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William Arnold Frutig
Colonel, United States Army
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From a contemporary press report: July 1996

William Arnold Frutig, a retired Army colonel and auto industry executive from Detroit, died Saturday, July 20, 1996 in San Diego. Colonel Frutig, 80, died in his sleep and the cause of death hadn't been determined.

He began a 40-year auto career with Chrysler Corporation and later worked 20 years as a conference leader at General Motors' Detroit Technology Center and at GM training centers in Minneapolis and Milwaukee. He moved to Rancho Bernardo, Calif., after retiring in 1978.

Born in Detroit, Colonel. Frutig attended Michigan State University and received a bachelor's degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

He was a teenaged equestrian and a boxer and track team member at both MSU and Bowling Green. At MSU in 1936, he won the national Golden Gloves welterweight boxing championship. He was initiated into the Michigan Gamma Chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon the same year and remained a member for 60 years.

Colonel Frutig enlisted in the Army in April 1941, served in World War II and was recalled to active duty in the Korean War. A member of the Army Reserves for 23 years, he was in Genaral Lewis B. Hershey's elite selective service unit.

Colonel Frutig was stationed in France as a paratrooper during part of World War II and won a Bronze Star at the Battle of the Bulge in Belgium. He also helped document Nazi concentration camp atrocities.

He was a member of First Church of Christ, Scientist in Boston for 61 years and a founding member of First Church of Christ, Scientist in Grosse Pointe Farms.

Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Mary Kelkenney Frutig; two daughters, Judith and Dr. Jennifer Frutig, both of Newport Beach, Calif.; and a brother, Edward, of Dearborn and Vero Beach, Fla.

Private memorial services were held July 22 in Rancho Bernardo. Burial is at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.


Updated: 19 November 2000 Updated: 5 March 2003 Updated: 15 May 2006
Bronze Star Medal