Morton S. Fry, age 87 of Ephrata, Pa passed away on Saturday June 1st,
2019 after a lengthy illness. Born in Ephrata, October 17, 1931 he was the son
of the late Miles W. and Babette (Ruppin) Fry. Mort was the loving husband of
Rebecca 'Beckie' (Gill) Fry with whom he celebrated 64 years of marriage. He
was a graduate of Ephrata High School, 1949 and received a bachelor's degree
from the University of Kentucky in agriculture.
He served as an officer in the United States Air Force.
After service, Mort came home to farm dairy until 1970. He was the founder and president of Miles W.
Fry and Son, Inc., aka Frysville Farms where he operated a nursery and
greenhouse until his passing. He
pioneered the development and marketing of Hybrid Poplar trees and wrote
numerous articles and gave talks promoting energy independence using biomass.
He was president of the Association for the Support of Poplar for Energy
and Nutrition, Member of the Board of Directors for the National Wood Energy
Association, Pennsylvania Farmers Association, Pennsylvania Grange, International
Society of Arboriculture, American Nurserymen Association, Pennsylvania
Nurserymen Association, American Clean Water Association, North American Poplar
Council and Pennsylvania Flower Growers Association.
Mort was an active member of Bethany United Church of Christ where he
served terms as a Deacon, Lead Elder, Consistory President and Bible school
teacher. He served as Chairman of the
Church and Ministry Committee of the Lancaster Association of the United Church
of Christ and as President of the Association of United Church of Christ. He was instrumental in Bethany UCC's purchase
of the property on which the Ephrata Manor was built.
Mort enjoyed antiques and was a member of the National Graniteware
Society. He also enjoyed deep sea
fishing, baking and his family history about which he wrote a book "The Ruppins
Mort is survived by his wife Beckie, 4 Children, Vincent V. (Caroline)
Fry, Victoria L. Fry, Anthony D. (Denise) Fry, and M. Simon (Karen) Fry, a
sister Charlotte Poor of Peoria, Ill., 12 grandchildren and 10
great-grandchildren. In addition to his
parents he was preceded in death by a brother Jacob D. Fry and a sister Ida Ann
A viewing will be held Wednesday, June 5th, 2019 at 6:00 to
8:00 p.m. at Gravenor Home for Funerals, 100 West Main Street, Ephrata,
PA. Another viewing will be held 10:00
a.m. Thursday, June 6th followed by a funeral service at 11:00 a.m.
at Bethany United Church of Christ, 140 East Main Street, Ephrata, PA 17522. Interment will be private at Bergstrasse Lutheran
Cemetery, Ephrata, PA.
Those who desire may make donations in Mort's memory to Bethany UCC at
the above address.