Fred Cryer

My friendship with Fred Cryer goes back to 1967 as students at UNC. We have remained very close through all the years and miles. Fred moved to Denmark in the 70’s and remained there until 2001. There he earned his Ph.D. in theology, married and raised 5 beautiful boys. Fred was such a complex mix of accomplished scholar and author, bad boy, choir boy, sports enthusiast, comedian, guitarist as well as having the amazing knack of bringing out the talent in everyone around him.

            He was always a wealth of information and inspiration. He was interested in everything and could not forget anything that he ever heard or read - literature, science, theology, music and sports. I never bothered to test that theory. It never failed that when I would wonder something out loud, he would respond with a soliloquy completely organized and more riveting than an action feature. I witnessed his powerful effect on young students, empowering them and inspiring the unteachable to become voracious readers and determined seekers of knowledge. It gave Fred and me great pleasure to while away hours discussing a topic and drinking our way through our current favorite libation (many phases here, scotch, rye, bourbon or his dad’s man-eaters - a Cryer version of Manhattan).

            Fred was my staunchest advocate, supporting my position to a fault. His support and love is greatly missed. Fred died of a massive heart attack in the fall of 2001, leaving a hole in my heart and my flanks unguarded.

Fred, I think of you daily
and will myself die still wanting the opportunity to thank you
for the richness that you gave my life.