Obituary: Fred Giles, former director of Physical Resources

Fred Giles

Fred Alvin Giles, former director of Physical Resources, died Feb. 14, 2015. He was 75.

Mr. Giles was born on Nov. 15, 1939, in Duchesne, Utah, to Clifford Alvin Giles and Phoebe Helen Hale. He met Sanya, his wife of 56 years, when she was in kindergarten and he was in third grade. He proposed to marry her at that time, and he did so 11 years later.

Mr. Giles attended Weber State University for pre-med classes, but switched careers and became a machinist and production engineer. He worked for Sperry Rand and Hill Air Force Base in Utah before moving to California with his family to work at Convair for several years. He also was director of Rohr Industries in Chula Vista where he was in charge of projects such as the first turbine-powered trains in the United States, the BART rapid transit system train car for San Francisco, Amtrak Trains and the Hydro boat.

In 1978, he and his family moved to Arizona. He joined Northern Arizona University where he served as the director of Physical Resources for several years. He held many other positions including supervisor of maintenance, assistant director of physical plant, and Emergency and Management Preparedness planner prior to the end of his career at NAU in 1996. He later retired from ASU as associate director of Physical Resources after being in a life-altering car accident from a drunk driver.

Mr. Giles is remembered for his great belly laugh and a wonderful sense of humor. He loved long drives, celebrating holidays with his family, his wife’s animals, and working in the yard. He was kind and loving and always put his family first. His warmth, wisdom and humor earned him the respect of his family and friends.

Mr. Giles is survived by his wife, Sanya Giles; his brother Ned Giles; his children Shelly Ann Giles, Fred John Giles and Saunya Kay-Giles Lawler; and his grandchildren Ryan Giles, Ashly Michelle Lawler, Britney Ann Lawler and John Cory Lawler. He was preceded in death by his brother Frank J. Giles and his sister Jean Giles Chartrand.

Visitation will be held from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 19, at Westcott Funeral Home, 1013 East Mingus Avenue, Cottonwood, AZ. A funeral service will be held at Westcott Funeral Home at 10 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 20 with burial to follow at Sedona Cemetery.