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Rev. Frederick "Fred" Dudley Sawyer 1898-1989


Posted By: Merllene Andre Bendixen (email)
Date: 9/9/2012 at 20:24:42

Rev. Fred Sawyer
Estherville – Services for long-time Estherville clergyman Rev. Fred Sawyer, will be held Saturday, February 25th at 10:30 a.m. at the First Christian Church with Dr. Robert Kunz officiating. Burial will follow in Estherville’s Oak Hill Cemetery with military graveside services by the Estherville VFW Post 3388 and American Legion Post 91. Masonic Services will be at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Henry-Olson Funeral Home. Family and friends may call at the funeral home from 3:00 until 9:00 p.m. Friday. Dr. Sawyer, 90, passed away Tuesday, February 21, 1989 at his home in Estherville.

Reverend Fred D. Sawyer was born April 4, 1898 to Spencer Aaron and Sarah (Tate) Sawyer at Urbana, Iowa. He graduated from Urbana High School in 1917, the Minneapolis Bible College in 1921 and received an advanced degree from Drake University in 1932. On June 13, 1922 he married Alice Helen Fisher.

Rev. Sawyer’s first pastorate was at Ladysmith, Wisc. In 1927 the couple moved to Hollandale, Minn. where they served until called to Bondurant in 1930. Five years later they moved to Estherville where Rev. Sawyer served as pastor of the First Christian Church until 1946. Following WWII and his service in the Pacific as a transport chaplin, the Sawyers moved to Bloomfield, Iowa where he completed nine years of pastoral service. Rev. Sawyer was then called to the staff of the National Headquarters of the Christian Church in Indianapolis, Ind. for three years. During that time he covered the United States and Canada organizing men’s groups in the churches. He then joined the State Staff of the Iowa Society of Christian Churches in Des Moines where he remained for twenty years. The Sawyers moved back to Estherville in 1966 where they have spent their retirement. Rev. Sawyer remained active in church affairs at the First Christian Church teaching Sunday School, serving as president of the Adult Fellowship and as financial secretary for many years.

Rev. Sawyer was active in the community as well, serving as Chaplin for both the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3388 and the American Legion Post 91. He was a lifetime member of both posts as well as the American Legion Post in Bloomfield. Rev. Sawyer was a fifty year member of the North Star Masonic Lodge and a member of the White Shrine.

Survivors are his wife Alice of Estherville; three daughters: Mrs. John (Virginia) McCurdy of Elk Grove, Calif., Mrs. Duff (Hilda) Weede of Bloomfield, Iowa and Mrs. Robert (Helen) Gray of Estherville; one son, Willard Sawyer of Elk Grove, Calif.; ten grandchildren and fourteen great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by one daughter, Lorraine who died in 1945; one grandson, Willard; his parents and seven brothers and sisters. (Estherville Daily News, Estherville, IA, February 23, 1989)


Emmet Obituaries maintained by Lynn Diemer-Mathews.
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