Fred A. Skellie, Jr., 92, passed away March 3 at home in Decatur, GA, with his devoted wife of 70 years, Lucille, by his side. Born in Cuevas, MS, he enjoyed childhood with his seven siblings on the Gulf Coast in Long Beach, MS, where he graduated from Long Beach High School in 1938. In 1942, he graduated from Tulane
University with a degree in economics. While attending Tulane, he was a member of the Naval ROTC. After marrying Lucille McPherson, Fred served in WWII
as a lieutenant and navigator aboard the destroyer USS Rodman. One of the ship’s first duties was escorting President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Tehran Conference. The Rodman sank a German submarine and helped rescue the crew before taking part in the Normandy invasion. In January 1945, the ship was assigned to the Pacific where it was heavily damaged by Japanese kamikazes. His detailed account of his Navy experiences can be found at http://tinyurl.com/codq89b. After the war, Fred and Lucille moved to Chicago where he worked in accounting while he completed graduate courses at Northwestern University
. In 1948, he moved his growing family to Atlanta, where he qualified as a Certified Public Accountant and worked for Rich’s Department store for 25 years, retiring as assistant treasurer. Fred then opened his own tax consulting and estate planning business, which he enjoyed until 2007. Fred and Lucille loved to travel, including trips to Alaska, Hawaii, Germany, Norway, Australia and numerous family reunions. Remembered for his generosity and servant’s heart, Fred was a leader in his church and was active in the broader community, touching countless lives with his kindness and encouragement. He saw the best in people, enjoyed helping others, and was quick to thank those who helped him. Fred was a loving and patient husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend. Whether boating on Lake Blue Ridge, golfing, playing bridge, coaching Little League, or rooting for favorite college basketball teams and the Atlanta Braves, Fred enjoyed life with cheerful enthusiasm. In addition to his wife Lucille, Fred is survived by two sons, Bert (Karen) and Don (Elizabeth); a daughter, Nancy Gerhardt (Gary); four grandchildren, four step-grandchildren; and a sister, Anne Herrington. His Memorial Service will be Saturday, March 23, 2013 at 1 pm at Druid Hills United Methodist Church, 1200 Ponce de Leon Avenue, NE, Atlanta, GA 30306 with a reception following at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Druid Hills United Methodist Church.