Fred Cervelli, 79, once a leading sports writer in Texas, and former public relations director of the Texas AFLCIO, passed away peacefully in his home on May 29. Fred was a 30 year resident of Orange, before moving to Austin in 1972.
Cervelli was educated with honors in journalism and leadership at Baylor University. In 1962 he was named Sports Editor of The Orange Leader. He was chosen Sports Writer of the Year by the Texas High School Coaches Association in 1963. Prior to his career in organized labor, Cervelli served as general manager of the Texas football teams that played Pennsylvania in the Big 33 All-Star Classics at Hershey, PA. in the mid 1960s. Texas won three of the four games in that series with Bobby Layne as head coach.
Before taking the journalism post for labor in 1962, Fred was an officer at Local 195, and the Gulf Coast District Counsel of Plumbers and Pipefitters.
As editor of Texas Labor’s monthly magazine that had a readership of 400,000, Cervelli won two national awards and a special achievement honor from civic groups. He and his wife were chosen to be part of a goodwill mission to Israel in 1977 where they met with Prime Minister Golda Mier and other dignitaries.
He is survived by his loving wife, Marie; his daughter, Charisa and his son Rhett all of Austin.
On April 7, Fred and Marie celebrated 50 years of marriage. Marie was his constant companion and caregiver, who selflessly gave her time, love and devotion throughout his life.
Fred was preceded in death by his parents Opal and Barney Cervelli.
Visitation will be held at Claybar Funeral home in Orange, Saturday June 1, from 1:00-2:00 pm, with services at 2:00pm. Interment will follow at Forest Lawn Memorial Cemetery.
Fred was known by his many friends and family to always have the perfect blessing, poem or quote. One of his favorites, by Henry David Thoreau, was “If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.”