FMU remembers Howard J. Frye



Frye’s positive and caring spirit will be missed by his students and colleagues .

The Patriot staff would like to send our deepest condolences to the friends and family of FMU’s professor of art education and the coordinator of the art education program Howard J. Frye after his passing on Friday, Nov. 26.  

On Dec. 1, university provost Peter King released a formal statement regarding Frye’s passing, including further information. Many colleagues of Frye’s were able to leave small notes to commemorate his life and career through his online obituary.  

“His passing leaves a void in the Fine Arts department here at FMU,” said chair of the department of fine arts Keith Best. “He was an exceptional educator, a good friend and a kind soul. My condolences to the family.” 

“Howard loved encounters with novel cultures and travel to distant lands,” said fine arts center manager Joseph Sallenger. “Ever the fearless optimist, he was confident that if he were open and honest with strangers, they would reciprocate in kind. But he also savored his frequent trips home to West Virginia, and was as devoted to his aunt Beulah as he was to his animal friends Pebbles and Okie. In the 19 years Howard was my colleague at Francis Marion University, he became my mental image of the quintessential absent-minded professor. His mind was always racing, and he enjoyed nothing more than to veer off into a new discipline of study and relish the joy of learning new things about art, about nature, about culture, about music, about the mind, and above all about teaching and learning itself.” 

“An amazing colleague, teacher, and person,” said Gregory Fry, professor of visual arts and graphic design. “He will be greatly missed, and our loss is deeply heartfelt. Condolences to all of his family and friends.” 

“We are deeply saddened to hear of Howard’s passing,” said vice president of Student Life Chris Kennedy. “He was a dedicated professor here at Francis Marion University and he will be missed.” 

The success of Frye’s career at FMU resounds through the fine arts department and with his students. His legacy is one that will live on for years to come.