Walter August Frome, Jr.
December 2, 1924 - July 1, 2013
Walter A. Frome, Jr. was raised in the small town of Black Earth, Wisconsin, just outside Madison. Growing up, Wally attended Black Earth Elementary and High School where he excelled academically and athletically. He was the star of his high school basketball team.
After graduation from high school in 1943, Wally entered the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Soon after, he joined the U.S. Army Air Forces and served during World War II from 1943-1946, rising to the rank of 1st Lieutenant.
Upon his return from the war, Wally completed an undergraduate degree in accounting at UW. He continued his education and earned his MBA from Wisconsin with honors in 1954.
Wally met the love of his life Mary Ellen Hitt while working for First Wisconsin National Bank in Milwaukee. Soon after their marriage in 1949, Wally received an offer from a bank in Los Angeles and decided to move Mary and their two boys to Southern California.
In the early 1960's, Wally transitioned from his career in banking and finance to real estate development. After working for fifteen years with a leading Orange County development firm, he began to actively build his family-owned industrial development and property management business, Frome Investments.
Wally's philanthropic endeavors began with the expansion of facilities at Servite High School in Anaheim, where he served on the finance committee. He played a key role in the early days of the Catholic Diocese of Orange as an original member of the Diocesan Lay Advisory Committee, the Construction Board, and the Land Acquisition Committee, which was responsible for the acquisition of a number of properties used in the development of new parishes.
Wally's philanthropy continued with gifts to Hoag Hospital, UCLA Medical Center, the Orange County Performing Arts Center, Casa Teresa, and Orange County Special Olympics, just to name a few. His generosity toward others will continue for years to come with the aid of the Frome Family Foundation, which he established several years ago.
Wally was a founding member of Big Canyon Country Club in Newport Beach as well as the Vintage Club in Indian Wells. He was continuously involved in both of the clubs, sitting on several committees and serving as president of the Vintage Club in 1994.
Together, Wally and Mary successfully managed to raise seven children, travel to more than sixty foreign countries, found a thriving real estate business and create an enduring charitable giving legacy.
Of all of Wally's many accomplishments, he was most proud of his family. He is survived by his loving wife Mary, his sister Betty Leibe, brothers William and James Frome, children Greg Frome, Jeff (Lori) Frome, Stan (Mari) Frome, Jennifer (Rick) Watchinski, Matthew (Barbara) Frome, Walter (Lori) Frome III, Theresa (Chris) Sperle, and his 19 grandchildren. Grandpa Wally's smile and love will live on forever.
The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 AM, Wednesday, July 10, 2013 at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church, Newport Beach.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to charity of choice.
For more information & directions, please visit www.localtributes.com
Brown Colonial Mortuary, Santa Ana, 714/542-3949, assisting the family.
Walter August Frome, Jr.