Colonel (Ret.) Frederick Rimmer Fowler has received his final orders. Rimmer died Saturday, 27 September, 2008 while attending the Army vs. Texas A&M football game at Kyle Field.
Frederick Rimmer Fowler was born 17 July, 1954. He was named for his great uncle, Dr. C. Frederick Fowler, a founding practitioner of the Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic at the University of Texas Medical School in Galveston and for his great-grandfather, Dr. Samuel W. Rimmer, a pioneer physician in San Saba County.
Rimmer graduated the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1976 and retired after 30 years of service to his country in August 2006. Rimmer’s military career, after West Point Graduation, included graduating from Airborne School, Ranger School, and the United States Army War College. He has served our great Nation from the icy cold of Alaska and Korea to the heat of the Sinai Desert in Egypt. His career was unsurpassed- as a Senior Parachutist he jumped from many “perfectly good” airplanes around the world; as an Infantry Battalion Commander, he led and trained Soldiers and later as an experienced staff officer, he went on to work in the halls of Washington D.C. at the U.S. Army Materiel Command and the Pentagon.
Since his retirement from the United States Army, Rimmer has lived and worked in Valley Spring, Texas on the family ranch in his beloved Texas hill country. Rimmer was a volunteer for the Valley Spring Fire Department. Those lands have been in Rimmer’s family for 115 years, having been acquired by his great-grandfather, Dr. William Young Fowler, a Vanderbilt-educated physician who established his Llano County practice in 1889. Rimmer’s ranch was later renamed as the R.A.C.E. Ranch, the initials standing for Rimmer, Andrea, Cassidy and Emily, his three beautiful daughters. The recent improvements on his ranch earned him the title of “Conservationist of the Year 2007” from Llano County. Rimmer, always the leader, continued to share his knowledge and experiences while shaping the young minds of students at Llano High School as he taught mathematics in the years after his retirement from the Army.
Rimmer was preceded in death by his father and mother, Prof. W.Y. and Mary Helen Fowler and also by his sister Jane Ann Gover. Rimmer was also preceded in death by his beloved aunt Jane Yates, and beloved Uncle, Colonel Jerry Green. Rimmer is survived by his three daughters, Andrea Greenbaum and her husband Kevin of Golden, Colorado; Emily Carter and her husband Josh of Abilene, Texas; and Cassidy Fowler of Littleton, Colorado. Rimmer is also survived by his brother, the Rev. W. Y. (Bill) Fowler IV and his wife, Deborah of College Station, Texas and his Uncle Tom J. Yates of Kingsland, Texas. He is also survived by Sergeant Major John T. Hawk of Colorado Springs, Colorado, who served as his “adoptive father” and mentor in the Army for many years. Also surviving Rimmer is his ranch manager, Wayne Homsley and Mr. and Mrs. Charles E. Phillips, who has managed Rimmer’s ranch for 20 years.
Rimmer is also survived by his second family that was created by their mutual love for each other and they are proud to call him their son and brother. His second mom and dad, Edgar and Yvonne Leifeste, have predeceased him and he is survived by his brothers, Fritz, Rae and Cole Leifeste and his sister, Whitney Leifeste Ruiz and many nieces and nephews.
Rimmer never failed to make an impression on anyone he met. As a result, Rimmer is also survived by a group of friends far too numerous to name, who would have given their life for him just as they knew he would do for them. These special men include Lieutenant Colonel Skip Munger, Major Charles Busbey, Lieutenant Colonel Clay Harrington, Otto Rusche, Dr. Leland Kassell, Colonel Scott Noble, Colonel Jay Hale, Colonel Dave Clark, Dr. Alex Pruitt, and Major Jay Land to name a few. No matter what group of friends or colleagues existed, it was never complete without Rimmer as a member. He was the perfect partner to have as your ally, as the enemy would certainly make the mistake of underestimating him. As in life, it is now after his death, that all of his friends know Rimmer is the one you want to “have your back.” He continues to be the friend he has always been by looking out for us now, and, when we all join him soon, be assured it will be a better place because Rimmer will have already gotten there and made his contribution.
Rimmer was a leader among brave men, a cherished father with unlimited love, and a friend of legendary proportions who will be missed greatly by all.
A private Eucharist was held for the family at Grace Episcopal Church in Llano, Texas on Wednesday.
A visitation was held from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Thursday, October 2, 2008 at Waldrope-Hatfield-Hawthorne Funeral Home in Llano, Texas.
A memorial ceremony, including rendering of Military Honors, and celebration of Rimmer’s life was held at the Valley Spring Community Center at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, 03 October, 2008. Pall bearers were Leland Kassell, Otto Rusche, Clay Harrington, Rae Leifeste, Charlie Busbey, and Bruce Lehmberg. To continue Rimmer’s work in education of our young students, donations can be made in care of the COL F. Rimmer Fowler Memorial Scholarship Fund at Llano National Bank, P.O. Box 190 Llano, Texas 78643 .
E-mail condolences to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Arrangements under the direction of Waldrope-Hatfield-Hawthorne Funeral Homes, Inc. in Llano, Texas.