Frederick Zane Albert, of Niles

Frederick Zane Albert, 91, of Niles, husband, father, grandfather, veteran, camper and builder died peacefully at 3:55 p.m. on Thursday, May 21, 2020, at West Woods, of Niles, following a brief illness.

He was born on May 18, 1929, in Bremen, Indiana, to Clayton F. and Mary L. (Dreibilbis) Albert.

He was graduated from the former South Bend Woodrow Wilson High School.

In 1951, he was inducted into the U.S. Army where he served for two years and was honorably discharged as a veteran of the Korean Conflict. He returned to South Bend and was employed at the former Studebaker Automobile Company.

In 1956, he moved to Niles and was employed at the former Tyler Refrigeration, in Niles, for 30 years prior to retirement.

Fred was a longtime member of the Huntly Memorial Baptist Church, in Niles, where he was affectionately known as “Papa Fred.”

He enjoyed camping with his family throughout the U.S., beginning with a pick-up truck mounted camper of his own design and manufacture. That first camper was replaced by a “store bought” camper, with successors of increasing size, culminating with a fifth-wheel camper suitable for winter residence in Florida.

Frederick Zane Albert

His knack for building included successfully adding a basement under the house in which they lived and leading a housebuilding project for his children. Fred’s self-taught craftsmanship included a level of creativity and ingenuity that became known as the “Frederized” technique.

On May 19, 1956, at the historic Studebaker Monson Chapel in South Bend he married the former Margaret Lucille Wood with whom he celebrated the remarkable 57th anniversary of their wedding prior to her death on Nov. 9, 2013.

He was also preceded in death by a grandson, Wendell Linde on April 6, 2018; son-in-law, Gary Shaw Sr. in 2016; and brothers, Frank Albert and Evan Albert.

Surviving family includes daughters, Donna Linde-Shaw, of Edwardsburg, and Gloria (Werner) Linde, of Niles, and son Paul (Donna) Scott, of South Bend; 10 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren; and several great-great-grandchildren; Fred’s siblings, Frank’s twin, John (Dorothy) Albert, of Fishers, Indiana; and Evan’s twin, Sally (Art) Poeske, of Gilbert, Arizona; and many nieces and nephews.

The funeral service for Fred Albert will be at 11 a.m. on Friday, May 29, 2020, at the Huntly Memorial Baptist Church, 1139 Huntly Road in Niles with Pastor Dale Welling of the church officiating. Committal services will follow at Mission Hills and will conclude with full military honors by the U.S. Army Honor Guard and American Legion Post #51 of Buchanan.

Relatives, neighbors and friends may prefer to witness the ceremony via the livestreamed broadcast available on the Halbritter-Wickens Facebook page:

Contributions in memory of Fred may be made to Huntly Memorial Baptist Church. Arrangements were made at the Halbritter-Wickens Funeral Home, 615 E. Main St. in Niles. Online condolences may be left at:

Many members of Fred’s family, neighbors and the church enjoy items with the custom Frederized touch.

More important was Fred’s faithfulness to his church and Jesus Christ, and his special love for his wife and family.

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