Jay Frye was born to Helen and Glenn Frye in Belleville, Kansas on June 15th, 1953. He attended Haddam Elementary school in his formative years, graduating from North Central High School in 1971, continuing his education at Cloud County Community College and eventually Emporia State University, graduating with a degree in Business Administration in 1976. He spent his youth traipsing the rural countryside with friends and helping his dad at Frye Motor Co, which Jay took over in the 1990s. Jay married Donna Duncan on November 5th, 1976. Jay and Donna met while both in college at ESU and being coworkers at IBP. To this union four sons were born.
Though each of Jay’s sons took his own path into life and adulthood, Jay was in each decision supportive and affirming. He was equally available for a call seeking car advice as he was dating advice; he never failed to lend a hand for an auto or home project. Grandpa Jay attended many of his granddaughters sporting and musical events, sometimes giving an unsolicited singing tip or two.
Besides Pontiacs, Jay loved tinkering with other antique vehicles and vintage motorcycles. He took many trips with Donna, wandering backroads to small town destinations. Jay also enjoyed motorcycle trips down rural highways and over mountain passes with his sons, building a library of stories for future sharing. The exploring and ‘getting there’ was always the best part of the adventure!
Jay loved history and was an avid ambassador for Haddam. He knew and shared many stories of not only Kansas and transportation history, but also the colorful anecdotes of western Washington County life. He found himself an accomplished grassroots artist late in life, assembling a large display of ‘Bobs’ and other automotive-related artpieces in his shop. Jay exuberantly shared his love for his community by honoring first time Haddam visitors with actual medals he had commissioned for just such a purpose. He recently represented Frye Motor and Haddam on the US 36 Highway Association board, serving to help preserve the history and businesses of north central Kansas.
Jay passed away on September 9, 2021, at the age of 68.
Jay is survived by his wife Donna of Haddam, sons Todd E. Frye and wife Rachel of Marysville, Bryan Frye of Belleville, Mitchell Frye and wife Chelsea of Brookfield, Illinois, Clint Frye of Oakland, California, as well as granddaughters Kayenta, Dahlia, Astoria, and Edna. He is also survived by his sister Glenda Mullen and her husband Mike of Lincoln, Nebraska. He was preceded in death by his father Glenn and mother Helen.
Private, family services will be held at a later date.
Memorials are requested to the Haddam Cafe and/or the Lee Dam Arts Center in Marysville, and may be sent in care of Tibbetts-Fischer Funeral Home, PO Box 566, Belleville, KS 66935.
Tibbetts-Fischer Funeral Home assisted the Frye family with these arrangements, www.tibbettsfischerfuneralhome.com
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