Fred was born on a ranch near Carmen, Idaho on November 8, 1923, the sixth of seven children of Fred and Precious M. (Neal) Kohl. He attended the one-room Lower Carmen grade school through the eighth grade and graduated from Salmon High School in 1941. He worked at North American Aviation’s B-25 bomber plant in Inglewood, CA in1941-1942 before returning to the ranch.
Fred enrolled at the University of Idaho’s southern branch (now Idaho State University). While a student, he enlisted in the Aviation Cadets, and was called to active duty in 1943. He received his pilot’s wings at Luke Field, Arizona in March 1944. During a break in his training, he and Mertia Nelson met, having been introduced by their sisters.
During WWII, Fred became a pilot of the Northrop P-61 Black Widow night fighter and served in the Philippines, Japan and elsewhere. He finished his military service in 1946.
He attended the University of Idaho, 1946-1950 graduating with a B.S. in Agriculture. He married Mertia Ann Nelson on October 23, 1948 in Walla Walla, WA while both were students at UI.
Upon graduation, Fred began his career with the University of Idaho Cooperative Extension Service in Caldwell, Shoshone, Idaho Falls and Boise. Taking a leave for graduate work in 1964, the family moved to Wisconsin. In 1968 he earned a PhD in agricultural administration from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. In 1971 they returned to Moscow where he served as the assistant director of the Cooperative Extension Service in Moscow, retiring in 1983.
Fred and Mertia raised three children, Freddie Anne, Alice and David. One of Fred’s major interests was studying the Greek New Testament. He and his son David (also a Greek enthusiast) met weekly in this endeavor for many years. Fred also prepared a brief column for Christ Church’s bimonthly publication entitled “Fred’s Word Study”.
Fred was a member and elder of Christ Church. He had belonged to Toastmasters, Kiwanis and the Gideons. Fred loved to garden and do woodworking. He enjoyed studying and teaching the Bible and was devoted to his wife, his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. He was a member of the University of Idaho Retirees Association, National Association of Retired Federal Employees and Friendly Neighbors.
He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Mertia, at their home, a daughter, Alice (Dave) Dlouhy of Austin, TX and a son David (Janice) Kohl of Moscow. He leaves seven grandchildren, Jason and Alex Fuehrer, Devon Frank, Jade Miller, Mary Dohrmann, Brian Kohl and Kallie Kohl as well as 14 great grandchildren. He also leaves a brother, Meade Kohl in Boise. He was preceded in death by a daughter, Freddie Anne Fuehrer and brothers, Frank and Neil and sisters, Doris Young, Alice Neal and Loah Mulkey.
The funeral service will be held Wednesday, December 30, 2015 at 11:00 AM at the First Presbyterian Church in Moscow. Burial will follow at the Moscow Cemetery.
Viewing will be from Noon until 6:00 PM on Tuesday, Dec. 29th at Short’s Funeral Chapel.
The family suggests memorials be made to Gideons International, Palouse Hills Camp, PO Box 8553, Moscow, ID 83843 or to Logos School, 110 Baker Street, Moscow, ID 83843.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Short’s Funeral Chapel, Moscow, and online condolences may be sent to www.shortsfuneralchapel.net.