Cover photo for Frederick "Fred" Robert King's Obituary
Frederick "Fred" Robert King Profile Photo

Frederick "Fred" Robert King

February 10, 1948 — June 12, 2024


Frederick "Fred" Robert King

Frederick “Fred” Robert King, of Prospect, Kentucky, passed away peacefully on June 12, 2024 at Norton Brownsboro Hospital. Fred, and his identical twin brother Frank, were born on February 10, 1948, to Frederick King and Ernestine Upchurch King in Columbia, South Carolina. 

Fred was a proud Eagle Scout, and graduated from Seneca High School, Louisville, KY, in 1966. He earned a BA in Speech/Education, from Kentucky Wesleyan College in 1970, and a Masters's Degree in Communications from Western Kentucky University in 1971.

From 1972 to 1976, Fred served as an admissions counselor for Kentucky Wesleyan College; he was then recruited by Green Coal Company and worked as a mine superintendent. In 1982, Fred was named as the Port Director of the Owensboro Riverport Authority. Due to his accomplishments there, he was named the Executive Vice President of Owensboro-Daviess County Industry, Inc. overseeing the economic development for Owensboro and Daviess County, Kentucky in 1987. Within this role, Fred’s hard work and business acumen, along with strong community support, attracted over 24 new companies, including Scott Paper Company, to the Owensboro/Daviess County, KY area. Following this, he was highly sought-after and hired as the Director of Economic Development in Saginaw, MI. Fred always loved Owensboro, and when the opportunity was presented, he accepted a position with Scott Paper Company, now the Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Owensboro, KY. 

Fred loved his career, but he also loved teaching. For several years, he taught Speech and Interpersonal Communications part-time at the Owensboro Community and Technical College. 

Fred’s greatest loves in life included boating on Kentucky Lake, enjoying Cape Canaveral, Fl sunsets, his friends, and his family. He was a devoted son, brother, husband, and father, but he excelled in his role as “Grampie” to his 6 grandchildren. Fred loved to laugh, was always up for watching a good ballgame, and truly never met a stranger in his 76 years of life. 

Fred was preceded in death by his father, Frederick King, his mother, Ernestine Upchurch King, and his identical twin brother Frank King. 

He is survived by his wife of 40 years, Cheryl Downing King , his brother, Greg (Cinda) King of Prospect, KY, his daughter Jennifer King Hayden (Richard) of Owensboro, KY., son Matthew King (Jennifer) of Louisville, KY, bonus daughters Laurie Kraft of Covington, KY, Leah Guy of Lambertville, NJ, his forever family John, Spence, and Tyler Kraft of Southern Indiana, and his grandchildren Reese Hayden, Sarah Hayden, Vince Hayden, Brooks King, Clarke King, and Jack Kraft. He also was a proud uncle to nieces Heather Higdon, Kristi King, Abby Willmott-King, and nephew Samuel King. 

Fred was a dual organ transplant recipient in 2012. This selfless gift gave him a second lease on life and the opportunity to witness major milestones of his children’s lives and the birth of all six of his grandchildren. To honor the beauty of the extra years brought to his life, the family is asking memorial gifts to be made to the National Kidney Foundation, 161 St. Matthew’s Avenue, #3, Louisville, KY., 40207. It is our deepest prayer that these gifts will continue to bless others with extra time through organ donation. 

Private funeral services will be held at a later date.

Memories and condolences for the family of Fred King may be shared at


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