Fredrick C Wolfley (Fred) passed away peacefully at home in Anchorage on July 17, 2020 at the age of 78. Fred was born on April 13, 1942 to Delbert and Beulah Wolfley in Corvallis, Oregon. He spent his youth in Star Valley, Wyoming. Fred lost his father to a heart attack at the age of 7, followed by the loss in 1959 of his beloved sister Sally Gene in a traffic accident at the age of 21. His mother never got over Sally’s death and is said to have died of a broken heart soon after. Fred worked at a dairy farm while attending college and often spoke fondly of families that mentored him, gave him opportunities, and strengthened his beliefs to always help others along the way. Fred attended Utah State where he graduated with a teaching degree in 1964.
A truck stop poster soliciting teachers for Alaska was a pivotal point for him. Fred applied and was accepted on the spot – he Arrived in Hoonah in 1965 as “The Wyoming Cowboy Reborn in Hoonah by the Sea” – he soon fit into the local village social structure of hunting, teaching, school sports, and fishing. With the purchase of an old wood boat, “HER HEIGHNESS”, he started commercial fishing during the summer months. In 1969 Fred accepted a teaching job in Glennallen, Alaska. A fire at his Glennallen cabin was a setback as he lost everything and soon moved on to Anchorage in 1970 to teach 6th grade. In 1973 Fred went on to teach at the new Bartlett High School. Fred’s story telling abilities allowed him to spin a tale to make the most mundane civics lesson seem compelling, he could make the shyest kid feel secure and special in his class. Fred taught and coached sports at Bartlett until retirement 17 years later – he reflected that thousands of kids call him Mr. Wolfly, and he tried hard to remember all their names.
Fred met Jan (The love of his life) at a party in 1970 – Jan was in a neck brace due to an auto accident and Fred was in a full leg cast due to a snow machine accident – they soon found they had much in common – the were made for each other and were married in 1972. This started the “Alaska Dream” with the purchase of land on Lore Road with dreams to build a house and a horse ranch in the meadow. The F-Bar-J Ranch soon began to take shape with a barn, fences, stables for the horses, and a new home they designed together. They had dogs, cats, horses, and many new friends to enjoy.
Fred’s love of the ocean soon resulted in a new boat “THE MEDALLION” that was kept in Seldovia for fishing along with an airplane to get there and back. As the stables grew and prospered, Jan reminded Fred’s greatest treasure. It was her skillful guidance, and his jovial spirit that built the F-Bar-J Ranch. They traveled throughout Alaska to fish and hunt while Fred’s flying abilities and knowledge of the Alaska Range and remote airstrip provided content for colorful stories with his favorite line of “Pull up on the Throttle!”. Together they went on adventures to Africa, Australia, and Europe creating lifelong friendships along the way. Fred was preceded in death by his beloved wife in 2013 from which he never fully recovered from her loss.
Fred is survived by his special cousin – JP Robinson and his honorary daughter Christina Eneix. His passing is felt deeply by loved ones from Alaska to Wyoming to Las Vegas to Australia. A special Acknowledgement to Mary Shields, Frank Dunham and Evelia Sanchez for always looking out for Fred and caring for him when he needed it most.
Due to the Pandemic, we are unable to schedule a Celebration of Life. Please send stories or pictures for a later memorial book and Video to firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be contacted for a later memorial service.
was the primary driving force behind the F bar J Ranch. She passed away in early 2013 leaving a big hole in the heart of the ranch. She is sorely missed. Here is a short clip to remind us of who she was and why she was so important.