(717) 733-6181
Click here to return to listings

Morton S. Fry

Morton S. Fry

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 of Rawitsch" 

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 Fish.

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.

Share |

Send a Condolence

If you would like to send a condolence message to a family please
fill-out the form below and we will deliver it to them

Your message will be displayed on this page after review by one of our staff
unless you select the private message checkbox below:
Your Name: *
Email: *
Condolence Message: *
Private Message?: If selected, your message will be shared only with the family.
Verification Code:
Retype Code Above:


We are so sorry for the loss of Morton. He was always jovial and had a positive outlook he valued friendship and he will be missed.
~ James Hensel
We are so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. Woman’s Club of Ephrata
~ Woman’s Club of Ephrata
Dear Fry Family, Dave and I are very sad to learn of Mort's illness and death. He was a man of great faith and inspired us so much. Please accept our deepest sympathies. Dave and Patti Jo Hibshman
~ Patti Jo Hibshman

Gravenor Home for Funerals, Inc. • John A. Leonhard: Licensed Supervisor • 100 W. Main at Church St. • Ephrata, PA 17522
Phone: (717) 733-6181 • Email: info@gravenorhomeforfunerals.com

©2019, Gravenor Home for Funerals, Inc. All Rights Reserved.