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Cleo Vista Frederick

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Cleo Vista Frederick, 96, died Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012, at the Fort Scott Manor Nursing Home. She was born July 12, 1916, in a farmhouse north of Girard, Kan., the daughter of Perry Melvin Campbell and Letha Xavina (Hewett) Campbell. The family lived on a farm on Highway 7, just two miles north of Girard. The Campbell family soon moved to a farm northeast of Fort Scott for a year, and then to a farm known as the Hewett land located three miles north and a quarter mile east of Farlington, Kan. This was the place where her mother was raised, as well as Cleo, her brothers and sisters and her son, George Clinton Frederick.

She met and married George F. Frederick on Nov. 27, 1942. George was from Laurel Springs, N.J., and was attending glider pilot training in Pittsburg while Cleo was attending summer school for her teaching credentials. Capt. George F. Frederick was killed in the Admiralty Islands on March 30, 1944. The life of Capt. Frederick and Cleo is memorialized in the book written by their son George Clinton, "World War II: A Legacy of Letters -- One Soldier's Journey."

In 1952, Cleo moved to Fort Scott, Kan., to take care of her mother. She described the three year relationship as the most gratifying time of her life since she developed a mother daughter friendship that words cannot describe. After the passing of her mother, she became a model for television commercials for Hallmark Cards, and bridal shows for department stores for mother of the bride dresses. On June 22, 1985, following 41 years of being single, she married Woodrow Strader of Fort Scott. They spent 25 years together until his death on Dec. 7, 2010.

Survivors include her son, George Clinton Frederick and wife, Kathy of Scottsdale, Ariz.; three granddaughters, Randi Smelko, Scottsdale, Ariz., Kim Tuttle, Gresham, Ore., and Kari Points, Middleton, Idaho. Also surviving are four great-grandchildren, Zackary and Zoey Tuttle, Gresham Ore., Kampbell and Kade Points, Middleton, Idaho; local cousins, Fred Campbell and Barbara Hewett Stuart, Fort Scott; and a sister, Mary Lavon (Campbell) Marshall Malin, Salt Lake City, survives of the five brothers and sisters. In addition to her husband's, she was preceded in death by two brothers, Orville Clinton Campbell and Chester Lee Campbell; and a sister, Margaret Lorene Poff.

The Rev. Dr. Ken Van will conduct memorial services at 11 a.m., Tuesday, in the Cheney Witt Chapel. Burial will follow in the Farlington Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 10 a.m., Tuesday, until service time at the funeral home.

Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at cheneywitt.com.