Fred Andrew Hodgson
October 3, 1936 – June 22, 2020
Fred grew up across the street from Carter Lake. As a young man, he fished, caught frogs, learned to sail and went canoeing. He worked in a greenhouse as a teen and learned about growing things from the owner, forming his love for the outdoors, flowers and plants. He spent so much time outdoors that his mother would always be calling him to come home. Their neighbor had a parrot that sat on their screened porch and learned to mimic Fred’s mother’s call, thereby forcing Fred to come home sooner than he wanted. He joined the Marines and learned much from the different assignments he was given. He delighted us with his stories about their strict training and discipline but through it all, you knew he was a proud Marine and patriot. He met his wife shortly after his return from the service. Their friendship developed into love and they shared 60 years of a blessed marriage, filled with much laughter and fond memories.
His father and uncle worked for Kehm Construction Co and helped him get a job there as a laborer. Under their guidance and Kehm’s encouragement, he became a bricklayer. His craftsmanship can be seen on many buildings in Omaha and Iowa. He later worked for Seedorff Masonry until an injury kept him from working. It was then that he devoted his time to building a beautiful yard and enjoying the wildlife that came to visit. He planted flowers and trees, built a large fish pond, stone bird bath and outdoor resting areas where he and his wife relaxed and spent many hours enjoying the fruits of his labor.
Over the years, he learned to be a taxidermist and produced beautiful specimens for family and friends. He introduced Mary Alice to the joys of camping, fishing, canoeing and sailing. Fred loved animals and enjoyed their two barkless African Basenji dogs even though they could be a handful. Later, they rescued two very sweet Dachshunds. The only animal he couldn’t handle was a Spider monkey he brought home when they were first married and living in an apartment. They were truly blessed to have such wonderful, understanding landlords after the monkey escaped his cage and almost destroyed their apartment. Fred definitely learned you stick with domesticated animals.
There was only one thing he hated and that was “ONIONS”. No matter how hard you tried to conceal them, he knew they were there, so everyone lovingly cooked a separate dish for him.
He was not much of a party person but always enjoyed seeing people and sharing stories and interests. Fred was a strong Christian man, who loved God and all the beauty that God placed on this earth for us to enjoy.
Survived by wife of 60 years, Mary Alice; sisters, Toddy Ann Manson and Nancy Cushion (Gene); sisters-in-law: Charlotte Young, Jovita Bramhall and Rita Covich; nieces and nephews: Tammy Ullsperger (Terry), Jennifer White (Justin), Steve Heaton, Roger Young (Margaret), Russell Young (Kathy), Rodney Young (Sue), Harold Young, III (Beth), Andrew Bensalah (Kelli), David Covich (Darlene), Susan Beaton, many great-nieces and nephews. Preceded in death by parents, Richard and Mary Todd Hodgson; sister, Barbara Heaton and her husband, Richard; brothers-in-law: Cary Manson, Joseph Covich, Harold Young, Jr, and Frank Bramhall, Jr.; nephew, Greg Heaton; great-nephew, Dwight Beaton.
CELEBRATION OF LIFE: Thursday, August 13th, 11am, at the West Center Chapel. INTERMENT: 2pm, Omaha National Cemetery with military honors by Millard American Legion Post 374 & VFW Post 8334. Memorials will be directed by the family or to a charity of your choice.