Fred A. Skellie, Jr, 92, passed away March 3 at home in Decatur, GA, with his devoted wife of 70 years, Lucille, by his side. Born in Cuevas, MS, he enjoyed childhood with his seven siblings on the Gulf Coast in Long Beach, MS, where he graduated from Long Beach High School in 1938. In 1942, he graduated from Tulane University with a degree in economics. While attending Tulane, he was a member of the Naval ROTC. After marrying Lucille McPherson, Fred served in WWII as a lieutenant and navigator aboard the destroyer USS Rodman. One of the ship's first duties was escorting President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Tehran Conference. The Rodman sank a German submarine and helped rescue the crew before taking part in the Normandy invasion. In January 1945, the ship was assigned to the Pacific where it was heavily damaged by Japanese kamikazes. His detailed account of his Navy experiences can be found at After the war, Fred and Lucille moved to Chicago where he worked in accounting while he completed graduate courses at Northwestern University. In 1948, he moved his growing family to Atlanta, where he qualified as a Certified Public Accountant and worked for Rich's Department store for 25 years, retiring as assistant treasurer. Fred then opened his own tax consulting and estate planning business, which he enjoyed until 2007. Fred and Lucille loved to travel, including trips to Alaska, Hawaii, Germany, Norway, Australia and numerous family reunions. Remembered for his generosity and servant's heart, Fred was a leader in his church and was active in the broader community, touching countless lives with his kindness and encouragement. He saw the best in people, enjoyed helping others, and was quick to thank those who helped him. Fred was a loving and patient husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend. Whether boating on Lake Blue Ridge, golfing, playing bridge, coaching Little League, or rooting for favorite college basketball teams and the Atlanta Braves, Fred enjoyed life with cheerful enthusiasm. In addition to his wife Lucille, Fred is survived by two sons, Bert Karen and Don Elizabeth; a daughter, Nancy Gerhardt Gary; four grandchildren, four step-grandchildren; and a sister, Anne Herrington. His Memorial Service will be Saturday, March 23, 2013 at 1 pm at Druid Hills United Methodist Church, 1200 Ponce de Leon Avenue, NE, Atlanta, GA 30306 with a reception following at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Druid Hills United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be expressed at

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  1. Uncle Fred is the most gentle and generous people I have ever encountered in my life. I am honored and grateful to have known him and his wonderful wife, my Aunt Lucille. He will be missed greatly, and I will always remember him as a kind and loving man. My love to Bert, Don, Nancy and Aunt Lucille, and all their families. jan

  2. Our heartfelt sympathy to you, Lucille, and all the Skellie family. We were privileged to know Fred in Rich’s and later as our friend and tax accountant for several years after our move to Sarasota. A favorite memory is Fred’s and your visit with us here a photo is still on our “VIP Board”. Fred was the consummate gentleman who was admired, and will be missed, by all who knew him. Blessings to you and all his loved ones.

  3. My deepest condolences on your loss. Fred was a great friend and neighbor of my parents as well as my Aunt and UncleBeth and Freeman Simmons. Sincerely , Phil

  4. I am so honored to have had Uncle Fred in my life along with Aunt Lucille. All I can think of is love, warmth in my heart and gratitude for all they did for us growing up in this wonderful Skellie family. Uncle Fred was THE WALK THE WALK AND TALK THE TALK. He will forever be in our hearts.

    With all my love,
    Beverly Anne Skellie Hiott & my husband, Joe#3 of 8 children of Richard Bethea Skellie FAM.

  5. Our hearts and prayers go out to the entire Skellie family on the loss of Mr. Skellie. I will be forever grateful to Mr. Skellie for introducing me to the CPA firm in a time that I needed their expertise. Thanks Bert for letting me meet your father and mother.

  6. Mr. Skellie was always a wonderful, dear neighbor. A trip to the Skellie’s household growing up was always a delight. All of the Skellie family is in our thoughts and prayers.

  7. Dear Lucille, Bert, Don, Nancy and your families,
    I remember all the good times that I had at your Chelsea house, and how Fred was always so welcoming to me, and I always admired him for that and the many other things that he did.
    When Susan and I had the WWII party, we both gained a whole new perspective on him and the way that he lived his life

  8. We will greatly miss our special Uncle who our children called Uncle Friend very appropriately. Nothing sums up a life adequately, but he can be deeply appreciated for being the special and kind person he was. Our love and prayers are with my very special Aunt Lucille and my cousins. Love from Anne and Charlie

  9. Bert, Karen and family. I did read your father’s obituary and clearly he had a very good and a life full of love and “life”. We can’t ask for more. Please accept our condolences on your loss.

    Joel and Pat

  10. Uncle Fred was a loving, generous and very “classy” man. He deeply loved Aunt Lucille and it showed every time they were together. He always had something nice to say and was always genuinely interested in others. He will be missed and we are all blessed to have had the opportunity to know him.

  11. Dear Bert –
    No wonder you are such a kind and generous soul! What a wonderful Dad for you, faithful husband for your Mom, and energetic peacemaker for his community. His travels with your Mom intrigue me – especially Norway.

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