Sunday, October 31, 2004

Richard K. Fritsche, 84, model maker

Also an expert woodworker

By Mary Lu Listermann
Enquirer staff writer

FORT THOMAS - Richard K. Fritsche took great joy in crafting model airplanes and ships. Some of his works even wound up in museums.

"His love for woodworking began as a young boy," said his daughter, Christina Fritsche of Cincinnati. "Having a woodworking shop was as natural as having a stove. He built cabinetry for a local church, designed and hand-cut all the crown molding in our home, and built furniture for friends and family. He often gave the models he built to others for their private collections."

Mr. Fritsche, a lifelong Fort Thomas resident, died Wednesday at the Highlands of Fort Thomas. He was 84.

Three of the models Mr. Fritsche built, the Nieuport 28, a model of the first fighter plane used in World War 1; a Fokker D VII, a German fighter plane; and a SE-5A, a British fighter plane, were donated to the Glenn Curtiss Aviation Museum in Hammondsport, N.Y. A model of a 1940 Chris-Craft boat can be found in the Great Lakes Historical Society Museum in Vermillion, Ohio.

"My father enjoyed the planning and creating process almost more than the final result," his daughter said.

Mr. Fritsche served during World War II as a captain in the Army Air Corps. During his service he was trained in engineering. After the war, he worked as an engineer and plant manager for the Miami Margarine Corp. in Cincinnati.

In addition to his daughter, survivors include his wife, Audrey Palmer Fritsche of Fort Thomas; son, Randall P. Fritsche of Fort Thomas; and two grandchildren.

Services were held Saturday. A. C. Dobbling Funeral Home in Fort Thomas handled arrangements.

Burial is in Evergreen Cemetery in Southgate.


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