William John Jack Frye


William John "Jack" Frye

Sweetwater, Beckham County, Oklahoma, USA
Death 3 Feb 1959 (aged 54)
Tucson, Pima County, Arizona, USA
Burial Wheeler, Wheeler County, Texas, USA
Plot Section B-12, Lot 2 SW 1/4, Space 1
Memorial ID 36603252 View Source

(Published in Amarillo Daily News, February 5, 1959)

TUCSON, Ariz., Feb. 4 - Jack Frye, 54, an aviation pioneer who lent a big hand to formation of one of the world's largest air transport firms, died in a Tucson hospital Tuesday night of injuries suffered an hour earlier in an automobile accident.

A former resident of Wheeler, in the Texas Panhandle where his father and step-mother now live, Frye was fatally injured when his car smashed into the side of an automobile that pulled into the road in front of him.

Sheriff's deputies said the impact hurled his body 40 feet. The other driver, Rosabell M. Wright, 42, of Tucson, suffered minor injuries.

Funeral services for Frye, a former president of Trans World Airlines, will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in Adair Funeral Home Chapel in Tucson. Burial will be in Grantwood Memorial Park in Tucson under direction of the funeral home.

Frye died at 7 p.m. Tuesday in St. Mary's Hospital in Tucson. He was born March 18, 1904, in Sweetwater, Okla., and spent much of his early life in Wheeler, Tex., where his grandfather, Henry Frye established a ranch in the 1880's.

Frye and his brother, Don, left the ranch in 1922. The pair went to California to learn to fly. Frye was president of Standard Airlines of Los Angeles in 1927, when the firm pioneered airline service to the East.

He also served as a pilot for the company and flew the first commercial airliners into Phoenix and Tucson. In 1930 Standard merged into Western Air Express Corp. and later the same year into Transcontinental and Western Airlines, now Trans World Airlines.

He went with TWA as vice president and became president of the airline at the age of 27 when the company boasted a payroll of 600. When he left 13 years later the airline was a 70-million dollar operation with more than 17,000 employees.

Frye sold out to Howard Hughes and joined the management Chemical Dieworks, which he operated for the United States government. Later he became president of General Analine and Film Corp. of New York, makers of Ansco photographic equipment. Later he became chairman of the board for the firm.

In recent years he became associated with C.R. Smith in Helio-Courier Aircraft Company and came to Tucson eight months ago to negotiate transfer of the company plant to Tucson from Pittsburg, Kan.

The firm specializes in aircraft requiring smaller-than-usual landing space.

He attended schools at Texola and at the "old rock schoolhouse" near the family ranch in Wheeler County. He also attended school at Wheeler and Clarendon. His mother died when he was a youngster and he lived for some time with his grandparents on the ranch, about 11 miles northeast of Wheeler. His grandfather settled at the head of the Washita River in 1877 and moved to the present ranch site in 1882. The ranch is one of Wheeler County's oldest.

His father and stepmother, Dr. and Mrs. William H. Frye live on the ranch at present. Dr. Frye is a retired chiropractor.

Frye at the time of his death, was making his home at the Lodge on the Desert, a Tucson winter resort. His wife, Nevada Emely and a daughter, Lili NevaJac Frye, are both living at the lodge. His wife and daughter were visiting a brother of Mrs. Frye in Las Vegas, Nev., at the time of the accident.

Frye's brother, Don, died several years ago.

Also surviving is a sister, Mrs. Ople Thomas of Hermosa Beach, Calif.

Frye began taking flying lessons when he was 19. At the time he was working at a soda fountain in Los Angeles, Calif.

In February of 1947 he piloted a four-engine Constellation TWA airliner in a trans-continental non-stop record flight of 7 hours, 27 minutes and 43 seconds. The record was not his first. In 1934 he spanned the country with a plane load of mail in 13 hours, 2 minutes, and shortly after whittled the time to 11 hours and 31 minutes.

Recently he disclosed to friends plans of his firm, the Frye Corporation of Fort Worth, to design an airplane for economy flight in the world's underdeveloped areas.

At the time, his corporation was seeking 15-million dollars to produce the F1 Safari, a four-engine plane designed to carry 12 1/2 tons or 80 passengers. Many operating methods and techniques introduced by Frye at TWA are now standard procedure on principal airlines.

In addition to duties with the Frye Corporation and Helio-Courier, he also was a member of the board of directors of the Maryland Casualty Company.

**See further at: Sedonalegend
Link courtesy of Randall Reynolds, Creator of site

**See additional at: JACK FRYE - Aviation Pioneer
Additional link courtesy of Eric Johnson, Creator of blog

Jack Frye, son of Dr. and Mrs. W.H. Frye, was killed in an automobile accident Tuesday afternoon in Tucson, Arizona.

Jack is a former Wheeler County resident and is a past president of the Trans-World Airlines.

The accident occurred at 7:10 p.m. at an intersection in Tucson. He died at 8:40 p.m. Funeral arrangements are pending.

(Published in The Wheeler Times, Wheeler, Texas, February 5, 1959)



Family Members



In their memory
Plant Memorial Trees

Sponsored by Ancestry