George Fraley

In memory of "Mr. F" - George Fraley, the Silver Fox


Brother George O. Fraley (Mr. F / Silver Fox) - Marshall University Financial Aid Director, Gamma Epsilon Chapter Advisor, mentor and long-time friend to many of us - died in Huntington on August 13, 2009.

George was a proud and loyal son of West Virginia, a proud and loyal alumnus of Marshall University and, most importantly, a proud and loyal member of the Gamma Epsilon Chapter of Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity.

Below are some notes sent in remembrance of "Mr F".  Add your thoughts by sending a note to Jim Summers, .






From: Jim Summers

Sent: Thursday, August 13, 2009

To: Zebe Gamma-Epsilon

Subject: Long Live the Silver Fox

It is with the deepest regret and a heavy heart, Brethren . . . that I report to you, per the ems below from Reid Fraley, the death, earlier this morning, of Brother George O. Fraley - Mr. F / the Silver Fox.

I am so glad that George and Mary Ellen got to attend the Gamma Epsilon Reunion last October and that we prepared the book of letters for him. George was far more than just a Chapter Advisor.

More to follow as we receive details of the final arrangements from Reid.



From: Thomas Hastie

Sent: Thursday, August 13, 2009

To: Jim Summers;

Subject: RE: Long Live the Silver Fox


As you may know I am one of the ER Chaplains at Cabell Huntington Hospital and I had the pleasure to spend several hours with George as he came thru the ER a couple of weeks ago. I recognized him immediately as the Para Meds brought him in and greeted him by name, which took him by surprise. I re introduced myself and his face lighted up as we began to reminisce about different ones of you...he laughed as he said that he can't even come to the hospital without running into one of his Brothers!

Reid arrived a short time later and during the course of the ER portion of George's stay we had a wonderful visit. Reid appreciates our Brotherhood and they way we have continued to care for his Dad and it shows.

George was a man of great personal presence and maintained his dignity throughout his stay, thanking me repeatedly for keeping an eye on him. We have lost a great friend and advocate.

C,F,& S, Tom



Date: Thu, 13 Aug 2009

Subject: Remembering my Little Brother

With sadness yet relief, I read Jim's message that Brother George Fraley passed away this morning. Sadness reflects over 40 years of memories of George, his smile, is warmth, and his dedication to all of us that surrounded him in his professional and personal career at Marshall. Relief reflects the knowledge that he is no longer suffering from the complexity of failing health that brought him close to his final hours on so many occasions over the past several weeks.

George was my Little Brother, an honor that I received because I was an officer in the chapter at the time. Unlike the rest of you who know me as "Bones," George always called me "Big Brother" and I addressed him as "Little Brother," including the time that we most recently exchanged hugs and smiles at the October 2008 reunion. I suspect many of us follow this convention, but there was a special feeling, an understanding, with George and me as I referred to a person with adult experience and knowledge as "Little" while "Big" was only beginning as a college student to face the challenges of adulthood and the life before me.

The reasons that George became our adviser say a lot about us and about George. The fact is that our Gamma Epsilon chapter had a higher proportion of members that needed some financial assistance than most of the other fraternities on campus. Our openness was understood in our origin and among the growing membership. Not surprisingly, brothers from diverse backgrounds were attracted to the kind of brotherhood that we felt for one another. Even though tuition at Marshall in 1963 when I first enrolled was roughly $125, there were many for whom this amount, combined with living expenses, was an insurmountable amount of money. George was there to help.

It was probably the distribution of "emergency funds" through which I first learned of George. I personally was fortunate enough to have my parents and my savings pay all of my undergraduate bills; but as pledge master, I advised many brothers to have a visit with George. Those visits, and now this does include me, often became advising sessions with discussion about financial planning, career goals, or just everyday life. With so many of us passing through his office, the invitation to become our adviser, and then a brother, was another expression of our openness and his charity.

To say that I will miss George is an understatement. I have written a few notes to him as I learned from this list about his declining health and complicated care. Those notes along with this one are my statement of the affection and respect that I felt for George over the years.

I also plan to remember George with a donation to the ZBT Scholarship Fund. For some, I fear that mentioning this way of remembrance will seem inappropriate from the person who has been urging contributions on many previous occasions. But for me, there is no better way to honor George's life than to help build a lasting fund that will carry on the work that defined his professional career and his dedication to all of us. I hope many of you will join me.

And while aging and mortality is on my mind and the memories of my days at Marshall are fresh, I would also urge each of you to consider joining Marshall's "Heritage Group"with a pledge to the ZBT Scholarship Fund at the Marshall Foundation for the time that you are no longer with us. A note to the Foundation and a hand written, dated note about your wishes placed with your will as a codicil is all it takes. At least a half dozen of us have decided that we want to be remembered in this way for the time when we will once again join George in brotherhood.

Sleep well, Little Brother. You live in the heart and mind of your Big Brother.

CF&S, Bones

C. Anthony Broh C. Anthony Broh

From: Stan & Dana

Sent: Thursday, August 13, 2009 

To: 'Reid Fraley'; 'john pauley'; 'jim summers'; 'janiebeth eades'; 'Manny Arellano'

Subject: RE: George

Reid, I was so saddened by your note that George had passed. However, we all know he is in a much better place and not suffering. How fortunate we all are that George was able to attend our last reunion and we could all tell him for one last time that we loved and cherished him as a true brother. He was indeed that to us all.

He was such a mentor for so many and I was perhaps the most mentored of his flock! As President in very precarious times of financial distress with the fraternity I looked to the "Silver Fox" for so much guidance and reassurance. He was always there and in times of personal need both George and Mary Ellen were there for me. So to both you and Mary Ellen I want to express our deepest regret for your loss.

Having said that I also want to echo "Bones" note relative to how many brothers George helped. I know when I was President and Vice-President I referred a lot of our new brothers to George and he was always there to help. We are going to miss his presence so much but we will always know he is with us always. You have our best wishes and tell Mary Ellen we are thinking of her in this time of loss.



From: bglandau@mindspring.comm

Sent: Thursday, August 13, 2009

To: C. Anthony Broh;

Subject: Re: Remembering my Little Brother

Tony {Bones}, No one could have described the loss we feel more eloquently. My gift to the ZBT Scholarship fund this year will be in honor and memory of George. It's hard to imagine what would have happened to many of us had he not been there to help. Thanks for writing the note.



From: Ken Cohen

Sent: Sunday, August 16, 2009

To; 'C. Anthony Broh'; 'Jim Summers'; 'Zebe Gamma-Epsilon'

Subject: RE: Remembering my Little Brother

 Tony, Well said.

Of course I worked with George for two years after I graduated. He was always an informal, helpful kind of guy who had other people's best interests in mind. I think he was genuinely frustrated that he could not offer help to more people. That speaks well of the way he thought about life.

Take care of yourself...having just survived a close call myself, I can say that all the BS is not worth it...and that keeping in touch with each other and helping others is the way to go.



From: John E Pauley

 Sent: Wednesday, August 19, 2009

To: ZBT Alumni List Subject: Remembering Mr. F

 I can't begin to thank Mr. F enough for all the things he did for me while I was at Marshall University.

He was always there for me as a friend and mentor .. even though he did that for everyone !! Somehow he always made us feel special and proud to be a ZBT. His unwavering guidance and support provided a group of young men with the opportunity to do something very special at Marshall University during an uncertain time. While most of us were only together for a few years, we developed a sincere respect for one another and created friendships that are still enduring after 40+ years .. and for that I thank him.

My Mom was a single parent who worked extremely hard to get me to college. The scholarships that seemed to always be there every semester helped keep me in school and the summer jobs provided money for fraternity dues and other necessities. I didn't know it at the time, but I was the only one in our family to ever graduate from college and I owe a lot of that to Mr. F.

I will always remember dinners with him and Mary Ellen, our road trips during the summer, endless campus and community service projects together but most all his enduring friendship and support of me no matter what. (There was that time Larry Rollins and I sent the entire list of incoming freshman to ZBT during rush and managed to get it back before Dean Jones found out !!)

Again, I just want to thank him for having a very positive impact on my life and for always being there when I needed someone to talk to or a kick in the butt !!

I am so thankful that I that I took the time to visit with him during his last days and that we honored him at the last reunion. He talked fondly about "his boys" and was really touched by the Book of Letters we presented him which he read often. We all have special people in our lives .. George Fraley was one of mine. He was a true friend and brother .. and I'll miss him. I pray that you have eternal peace and rest "Silver Fox" and look forward to the day we can be together again in a better place.

I plan to attend the memorial service on August 24th .. if you would like to send a note for the service, please email it to me asap. The fraternity is sending flowers .. yellow roses with a ZBT banner. I encourage you to consider a donation in Mr. F's memory to the ZBT-GE Scholarship Fund .. this would be a fitting honor for a man who spent his life helping others achieve an education.

Please continue to remember our other brothers in your thoughts and prayers and they continue to face their health issues and take the time to reach out to them and others to let them know how much you care.

Be safe and I hope to see you all soon.

John "Jeep" Pauley  



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