Frederick R. “Fred” Lange, 73 years of age passed away on Sunday, April 16, 2017 at UH Portage Medical Center surrounded by loved ones. He had bravely battled cancer for eighteen months.
Fred was born December 17, 1943 in Freedom Township to Robert A. and Rose (Pinter) Lange. He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Robert G. Lange.
Fred grew up on the family farm where he resided until his death. Fred graduated from James A. Garfield High School in 1962 where he was a member of the wrestling team. Fred worked with his family on the family farm and was a member of the National Guard. After briefly working at the Ravenna Arsenal, he went to work for his lifelong friend at Otto Falkenberg Excavating as a heavy equipment operator and mechanic in the early 70’s.
Fred was an exceptional mechanic. He could start the morning with a tractor in pieces and be plowing a field with it by the afternoon. Fred was gifted with an analytical mind. He was an innovator and could fix anything. Fred operated a hydraulic excavator with remarkable precision. He loved work and was dedicated to his job. Despite his grave illness he was still on the job two weeks before his passing.
Fred was a farmer at heart and had a great interest in tractors, driving many miles with his dear wife Betty to attend tractor shows. He was an avid reader and very intelligent. He was always willing to lend a helping hand. Fred will be remembered for his great laugh. Fred cared deeply for his family and friends and often would seek out and renew old acquaintances. Even in his last days, his thoughts were of others.
Fred married his loving wife Betty (Hawkinberry) on August 6, 2004; she survives at their home. He is also survived by his son Thomas Lange of Canton, step-children Lisa Wilson of Nevada, Karen Hawkinberry (Donshay) and Orlin Hawkinberry of Ravenna, five step-grandchildren, sisters Elaine (Charles) Duffield of Freedom Township., Louise Styron of Ravenna, Carolyn (Edward) Unaitis of Medina, Barbara (Barry) Crawford of Marshallville, sisters-in-law Beverly Lange of Freedom Township, Barbara (Carl) Shaffer, Connie Graves, mother-in-law Ruth Hawkinberry all of Ravenna and many cousins, nieces and nephews.
At Fred’s request cremation has taken place. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 2:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M. at the Freedom Township Hall at the intersection of State Routes 88, 303 and 700. Fred’s advice to everyone is to take care of yourself, enjoy life and eat three salads a day!