Athens Review, Athens, Texas

November 1, 2013

A tribute to Fred Kurlander...Gone, but never forgotten

Kathi Nailling
The Athens Review

CEDAR CREEK LAKE — Fred Kurlander, 69, a larger than life personality in Henderson County lost his battle with brain cancer on Tuesday.

Kurlander has had many business ventures at Cedar Creek Lake, but his most recent and the one he was most proud of was Solar Screen located on Highway 198 at Cedar Creek Lake. More recently  Kurlander opened a second Solar Screen location in Athens on Hwy. 31.

Fred's wife, Viki, said “Fred loved Cedar Creek Lake. He never had a bad word about anyone or anything, he loved the lake and the people at Cedar Creek Lake.” “His positive attitude is why he survived three years with cancer.”

Fred was an active member of the Cedar Creek Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. He served on the Board of the Gun Barrel City Chapter of the Cedar Creek Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, served on the Tom Finley Park Board, a member of the Cedar Creek Lake Parrot Head Club, a   member of the Cedar Creek Lake Business and Industry organization (B&I), was on the Gun Barrel City EDC Board for a short time and a member of the Athens Chamber of Commerce. Fred held many Chamber Business After-Hours at Solar Screen in Gun Barrel City and visited many businesses during their events. He was very much an advocate for both the Cedar Creek Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and the Athens Chamber of Commerce.

Everyone who knew Fred talked about his smile. Some of  Fred's friends  commented on Facebook  “Seriously don't think I ever saw Fred without a smile on his face. Thanks for the laughs, love and dating advice,” “You are missed incredibly!!”  “Fred, thanks for the love and memories.”  According to Viki, Henderson County and Cedar Creek Lake was Fred's home and he loved it.

Fred's friend Greg Mason said “Fred's Place - will never be the same. Lost our buddy, Fred Kurlander. Great man. Wonderful mind. He came to Athens, looking to open a second location for Solar Screens almost 3 years ago. He hated the fact that everybody knew "his building" as the Flying Gatto or the former "filling station. He said, one day I hope everyone will remember that building as his. Sure enough, Fred is now gone, and he made a big impact on this little town. Viki Seelig, I'm heartbroken for your loss and envy his love for you. You meant the world to him. God Bless, Fred. Rest in Peace my friend.

Viki said “We knew he had cancer when we got married, but we had already made a commitment to each other.”

Fred was born in St. Louis, Missouri on June 22, 1944  and passed way  in Dallas on Oct. 29, 2013.  He is survived survived by his wife, Viki; sons, Todd Kurlander, Corey Kurlander; step-daughter, Jen Seelig.

A memorial service is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 1, 3 pm at Restland Memorial Chapel in Dallas.

Viki said “Later we hope to find a location to  have a celebration of his life, because Fred loved living so much.”