Fred Friedman Memorial
My father, Fred Friedman, was born in 1926 in Salzburg, Austria. In 1938, a family friend from Switzerland helped my Dad and his family escape from Nazi-controlled Austria – just avoiding the German Concentration Camps.
From Switzerland, the family traveled first to France, then Spain and Portugal before finally arriving in the United States in 1941. My Dad was 15 years old when his family settled in Queens, New York.
Shortly after he graduated from High School in 1945, my Dad joined the United States Army. After finishing his service, he earned an Accounting Degree from New York University in 1950. In 1954, he earned a Law Degree from Brooklyn Law School and was admitted to the New York State bar in 1955.
In the summer of 1955, newly-minted attorney Fred Friedman hung out his first shingle at his home on Clarence Center Road in Newstead, New York.
Back then, he didn’t have much more than a love for his profession, a manual typewriter and a clear vision of how to best serve the residents and businesses of Western New York.
Beginnings don’t come much humbler than that. But thanks to his commitment to stay true to that vision, the law firm that he founded, Friedman & Ranzenhofer, P.C., is still going strong serving the Western New York community from its six (6) offices.
Over the years, my Dad served the citizens of the Buffalo, New York area in many ways. He served as the Akron Village Attorney, the Genesee County Family Court Hearing Officer, and was Chairman of the Committee on Law & Public Safety of the Erie County Charter Review Commission. He was recognized for his community service when he was named 2006 Clarence Chamber Citizen of the Year
He served on many boards and organizations, such as:
- Clarence Chamber of Commerce (Director and President)
- Clarence American Legion (Judge Advocate)
- Akron-Clarence Kiwanis Club (President)
- Erie County Judges & Police Conference (Director and First Vice President)
- National Council of International Visitors (Director and Western New York Chapter President)
- Niagara Frontier Chapter American Youth Hostel (President)
- Buffalo Youth Hostel (Co-Founder)
- SCORE (Chapter President, Counselor and Assistant District Manager)
- Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo (Promoter and Fundraiser)
- Clarence Meeting House Board
- Attaché for the Austrian teams participating in the 1993 World University Games
- Advisory Board of the U.S. Attorney of WNY for the “Safe Streets Project”
As Austrian Consul for Western New York from 2002 to 2006, he provided information about visas, passports, pensions and other governmental benefits to both Austrian citizens and non-citizens. He also served as the Austrian interpreter and spoke to groups, schools and universities in the United States and Austria.
As a survivor of the Holocaust, my Dad was invited and honored to light a candle at the Jewish Community Center of Buffalo’s 2004 Yom HaShoah Observance in memory of the 6 million who lost their lives.
In his spare time, my Dad enjoyed traveling the world, especially returning often to his Austrian homeland. And in the Fall of 2007, he traveled to China which he’d been looking forward to for a long time.
But perhaps his greatest joy was spending time with his six beloved grandchildren.
Sadly, my dad passed away on January 16, 2008 in Hospice Buffalo after a short illness. He was 81.
Surviving him are my Mother, Fay Terris Friedman; three sons, attorneys Lawrence, Richard and me; six grandchildren and a sister, Margaret Kohlhagen.
My dad was a great husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend.
All those who knew him will miss him greatly.