Blecher, Freda Fiedler

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Freda Fiedler Blecher, of Blacksburg, Va., passed away on Monday, September 15, 2008.

She is survived by her husband, Marvin; her three children, Jennifer, Michael and Lee; and their spouses, Clay, Robin and Mia; her two granddaughters, Dara and Sydney; and others in her extended family.

Freda was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., on September 15, 1942, and moved to Blacksburg in 1971. She was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother who always put her family first. She also gave much love to her many friends and creative service to the community she so valued. Freda put a smile on everyone’s face when they saw her in her red, white and blue sequined baseball cap driving her blue Miata around with the top down. She loved nothing better than being out and meeting people. If you lunched with Freda you would have to stop between bites to meet all the other people at the restaurant who knew her. She loved going to the Blacksburg Farmer’s Market, the summers she and Marvin spent in Vancouver, and the trips she took to Europe, Israel and Asia, and especially the safaris in Africa. This summer all the family was lucky enough to spend a beautiful beach vacation together. Nothing could have stopped her from that!

Among the many contributions she made to the community were her years of service to the Blacksburg Jewish Community. She was one of its founders and served twice as congregation president. She also served on the board of directors of the Free Clinic of the New River Valley, an organization that provides medical care to those who cannot otherwise afford it. She was one of the ‘founding mothers’ of the Valley Interfaith Child Care Center, which provides reduced-cost child care for low-income working families. She was also president of the board of Musica Viva, another non-profit organization that presents chamber music concerts in the New River Valley, featuring internationally acclaimed musicians. In addition to her community service, Freda founded the Stanley Kaplan Test Prep Center in Blacksburg and served as its first director; she later became Southwest Virginia State Director for Kaplan Test Prep before she retired.

May her memory be a blessing to her family and all who knew her.

The family will sit shiva, a formal period of mourning in Judaism, at home through Sunday, September 21, 2008, with the exception of Friday evening and invites friends to visit them from 7 to 9 p.m. at the home.
A memorial service to honor and celebrate Freda’s life will be held at the Blacksburg Jewish Community Center 2 p.m. on Thursday, September 18, 2008.

Those who wish to honor Freda with a charitable donation may consider The Free Clinic of the New River Valley, Valley Interfaith Child Care Center, Musica Viva or the charity of their choosing. Arrangements by McCoy Funeral Home, Blacksburg, Va.