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It's a bird... it's a plane... it's SUPERFRED!


My grandfather, Frederick Yeager aka SuperFred, grew up in NYC during the Great Depression with a single mother and five siblings.  He spent his days playing stick ball and slowly walking through the Coffee District breathing in the aromas of coffee beans roasting. Summers were always enjoyed at a free boys camp in the NY mountains, where he went until he was too old to be a camper, then became a counselor and where he eventually was married.

Throughout his life, he took as many opportunities to advance his education as possible. After primary school (Fred could tell you the name of every teacher he had from Kindergarden to graduation), he went to city college for only five cents for a library card.  He then went on scholarship at West Point where he lettered in football, basketball, and baseball.

Fred then met the love of his life, my grandmother June Hartney.  June was the daughter of a famous WWI flying ace, Harold E. Hartney who wrote the novels "Wings Over France" and "Up and At 'Em."  They soon married and Fred was off to WWII, where he was stationed in the Philippines.

There, in the Philippines, Fred was captured and was taken Prisoner of War and proceeded in the Bataan Death March to Japan, and survived.  He was then interned in POW camps for three and a half years until then end of the war.  Living in the worst of conditions, SuperFred decided to stay positive no matter what, and to keep his mind active.  SuperFred then invented the I Like It Here Club.  He rallied the POWs and boosted morale through coming up with creative and imaginative reasons why they all liked it right where they were. Fred even met with a fellow POW regularly who taught him to speak Russian fluently.

After the war, Fred then took Russian Studies at West Point and became an Assistant Military Attaché in Russia.  After his military retirement where he lived everywhere from London, Berlin, Moscow, to the Virgin Islands; Fred became a Russian Professor at Rider College, where he started the Song Bird Hall of Fame.  This is where his classes competed against each other in foreign song and dance at the local pub.  He was always encouraging education, he believed it is the one thing no one can ever take away from you.



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