Albert H. “Al” Frey of Charleston passed away at his home on Wednesday, April 10, 2013.
Al Frey had a long association with music in Kanawha County. He served as band and orchestra director at East Bank High School and Stonewall Jackson High School and as curriculum supervisor of instrumental music for Kanawha County schools. Since his retirement in 1988 he had remained active in state and local educational and community activities. He served for over 30 years as executive secretary/treasurer for the West Virginia Music Educators Association and as an adjudicator for numerous festivals in Virginia, Kentucky and West Virginia. He was a past president of the West Virginia Educators Association, West Virginia Bandmasters Association, West Virginia Orchestra Association and the West Virginia Chapter of Phi Beta Mu National Bandmasters Fraternity. Frey served as director and co-founder of the Charleston Metropolitan Band and the Charleston Daily Mail Majorette and Band Festival. He was a member of the Charleston Lions Club, West Virginia Society of Association Executives, Charleston Elks Club, Kanawha Masonic Lodge No. 20, 33 degree KKCH Scottish Rite Bodies, Beni Kedem Shrine Temple, West Virginia Music Educators Association and the Music Educators National Conference. He was also a member of Phi Delta Kappa, Phi Mu Alpha and Alpha Sigma Phi fraternities. Frey played trumpet and string bass with several well-known dance orchestras in the Charleston and Lexington, Ky., dance orchestras through the 1950s and 1960s.
He served as parade chairman for the Charleston Festival Commission for 15 years and was the honorary parade marshal for the Charleston Sternwheel Regatta Festival Grand Feature Parade in 1994. Frey was selected as a Lions International Melvin Jones Fellow, received the “Charlie West Salutes” award by the Charleston Daily Mail and was inducted into the West Virginia Music Educators Hall of Fame. Frey held a bachelor and master’s degree from the University of Kentucky, where he served as director of the University Radio Studios Staff Orchestra, and certificates in advanced graduate studies from West Virginia College of Graduate Studies. He served as an adjunct professor at Morris Harvey College and West Virginia Institute of Technology. His high school bands won honors in many national events, including the Kennedy Inaugural; the Cherry Blossom Festival; Expo ’67 in Montreal, Canada; The Music Man Festival in Mason City, Iowa; the Indianapolis 500; and the New Orleans Mardi Gras. He was one of the founders and served as president of the Kanawha Valley Youth Orchestra, the predecessor of the West Virginia Youth Symphony Orchestra.
Frey was preceded in death by his wife of 33 years, Jewell Daubenspeck Frey. He is survived by several cousins: Kermit and his wife, Ruth Harris, of Charleston, Danny and his wife, Nancy Harris, of Elkview, James Harold Harris of Sutton and family; and special friend, Charlotte Dorsey and the complete music family.
Funeral service will be held Tuesday, April 16, at 1 p.m. at Charleston Baptist Temple with the Rev. Rex Whiteman officiating. Entombment will follow at Sunset Memorial Park Mausoleum, South Charleston, with Masonic graveside rites conducted by Kanawha Lodge No. 20.
Visitation will be from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Monday at Wilson Funeral Home, 420 Lee St. W., Charleston.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Charleston Lions Club Fund and The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation, Suite 1600, 900 Lee St. E., Charleston, WV 25301.
The online guestbook may be accessed at www.wilsonfuneralandcremation.com.
Wilson Funeral Home, Charleston, is in charge of the arrangements.