I write the following with pause and great sorrow, Fred was not family to me in genealogical terms, but was family to me in my heart and soul. We lost the best today, 95 year old Fred Archambault was my dear friend for 24 years, unlikely friends I guess, that a 20 something and a 70 something would have a unique bond from the start, but we did. I know Fred had that impact on everyone by making them feel special. He was impressed in one way or another by each and every person he met, he truly saw the best in people and would draw it out of them with ease, he was not overly impressed by himself and his own many accomplishments though. Humbleness at it’s finest was a pure trait of Fred’s but he did light up and would let others share in the joy of his achievements when nudged. Reluctant, but his persona and charm shone through when interviewed by a newspaper or local news channel regarding his fitness, longevity and power lifting World Records. In the sea of great great people I am lucky enough to have in my life, Fred was simply the most pure & kindest human being I have known.
In spending time with his wife Pat and son John last week I was so lucky to hear great stories and some little things that made Fred, Fred. As a young family man he would wake every Sunday and ride his 3 speed bike from South Lawrence to Salisbury beach and return in time for lunch. He loved the Red Sox & Patriots while enjoying Coors Light during games, red wine with dinner, and loved candy and had bowls all around the house. His beautiful wife Pat reminisced, “While watching TV Freddie would get up from his chair and I would hear him sneaking candy from a bowl and walk into another room to indulge”, followed by her giggling while holding Fred’s hand at his bedside. I couldn’t help but notice, she didn’t cry while I was there, she smiled, gazed at Fred with such deep love and happiness, joy of a life well lived I saw in her eyes, 71 years of marriage, what I witnessed was true love. I am forever impacted by the two hours I spent with Fred, Pat & John.
I could go on writing about my time spent with Fred over the past quarter century but I will end with this. As much as he impacted us all, you all impacted and impressed him, he would always tell me! Our community here at HHF is unique, we are certainly a family and although we lost a great one lets keep Fred close to our hearts, reminding each other of the way he lived his life and that his example may stay with us in its pureness, truth, integrity, love, balance, but most importantly, in expressing love for each other by sharing our lives through great conversations and truly listening to each other (I’m glad I listened to Fred). Fred truly loved you all. I know first hand that he was grateful to have you all as a big part of his life, as confirmed by his son John in an email to me over the weekend, “His whole being revolved around the gym and the many friends and acquaintances he made over the years”