Dr. Frederick "Fred" Sawchuk, MD

  • Born: October 4, 1938
  • Died: March 20, 2020
  • Location: Battle Creek, Michigan

Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care

105 Capital Ave NE
Battle Creek, MI 49017

Tel. (269) 962-5527

Tribute & Message From The Family

Dr. Frederick James "Fred" Sawchuk, MD, age 81, of Battle Creek passed away peacefully at the Rose Arbor Hospice Residence in Kalamazoo on Friday morning, March 20, 2020. Fred was born in Albion, Michigan on October 4, 1938, the loving son of Paul M. and Steffenida M. (Zaremba) Sawchuk.

Fred graduated from Washington Gardner High School in Albion where he played football and was on the tennis team. Fred received his Bachelor's degree from Albion College in 1960, where he played football and was named the team's Most Valuable Player his senior year. He then attended the University of Michigan Medical School where he received a Doctor of Medicine degree in 1964. After five years of residency and training, Fred faithfully served his country as an Orthopaedic Surgeon in the United States Air Force, and was honorably discharged in 1977 with the Rank of Major. In 2007, he retired after over 36 years of private practice in orthopaedic surgery in Battle Creek.

Fred married the "Love of His Life", Katherine "Kathy" Munk at the First United Methodist Church in Albion on August 24, 1962. He is survived by his wife of more than 57 years, Kathy; two children, Dr. Steven (Jennifer) Sawchuk, DVM of Lancaster, Ohio and Elisabeth (Joseph) Avery of DeWitt, Michigan; six grandchildren, Alexander, Benjamin, Nicholas, & Matthew Sawchuk, and Amelia & Isabelle Avery; a sister-in-law, Barbara Sawchuk of Albion, and nieces & nephews. He was sadly preceded in death by a daughter, Laura Kathleen Sawchuk in 1976; his parents; and his older brother, Paul Sawchuk.

Over the years, Fred was a member of the former Calhoun County Medical Society, the Michigan State Medical Society, the Clinical Orthopaedic Society and was board certified with the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons. He was also a former board member of the Music Center and longtime member of the First Presbyterian Church where he served as a Deacon, Trustee and on various committees. Fred was a Master Gardener and volunteered at Leila Arboretum.

A true family man, Fred enjoyed spending time with his family at his cottage on Little Long Lake, traveling with his wife, and special fishing trips to Canada with his family and friends. Fred's hobbies included gardening (especially with hostas), fishing, reading and playing tennis. Fred also enjoyed watching football, basketball, tennis and attending concerts with his wife, especially the Battle Creek Symphony Orchestra. He will be best remembered for his unique sense of humor, strong work ethic and love of his family.

Due to the recent Government Regulations and the large number of people who knew and loved Fred, a celebration of Fred's life will be held at a later date at the First Presbyterian Church of Battle Creek. In lieu of flowers, memorials directed to the First Presbyterian Church of Battle Creek, the Leila Arboretum Society and/or the Music Center of South Central Michigan, would be greatly appreciated. Arrangements by Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care, Battle Creek. Personal messages for the family and/or favorite memories of Fred may be placed at www.farleyestesdowdle.com.

Condolence & Memory Journal

This was one of my favorite doctors. He always had time for his patients and listened to them.

Posted by Barbara Shambach - Covington, IN - Coworker   January 03, 2021

I will always be Grateful for What Dr.Sawchuk did for Me. So sorry for the loss of A Good Doctor.

Posted by Sharon Hepler - Battle Creek, MI   April 16, 2020

Hi Kathy,
Sara and I are sorry to learn today, of Fred having passed. Not only was he a professional colleague, but a great friend. It seems a couple of life times ago that we played tennis together; then again, it was just yesterday in my mind. God bless you, Stephen and Elisabeth and all the family in the coming days. Love, Jack and Sara Hoffmann

Posted by Jack & Sara Hoffmann - North Richland Hills, TX   March 29, 2020

I was so saddened to hear of Dr Sawchuk's passing, my mother told me many wonderful stories of the team of three doctors who made it possible for me to walk and have a normal life. I will forever be grateful to Dr Sawchuk, Dr Amlec and Dr Allen for everything they were able to do for me. I hope his family is comforted by all the people's lives he was able to improve with his skill and knowledge and to know that his legacy lives on in those lives he helped.

Posted by Shawn Miller - springfield, MI   March 29, 2020

I was very sad to hear of the passing of Dr. Sawchuk. I worked with him at the Community Hospital Trauma Center. He was a very kind and compassionate doctor, and always a pleasure to work with. I pray that God gives his family strength, comfort and peace during this difficult time.
Sharon Paul

Posted by Sharon Paul - Macomb, MI   March 28, 2020

I was very sad to hear of Dr.Sawchuk's passing today. What an honor it was to work with this fine orthopedic surgeon (Orthopedic floor and Emergency Room) in Battle Creek. My sincere sympathy to the family. May God rest his soul.

Posted by Cathy Ilich - St. Joseph, MI - Coworker   March 26, 2020

I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dr. Sawchuk. He was a very skilled and kind doctor. In 1976 I was in a very bad automobile accident. I was a RN at Leila. To make a long story short I had a pulmonary embolism and Dr. Sawchuk came to my rescue, pounded on my chest and broke the clot up. He saved my life. He would never let me formally thank him for saving my life. Anyway, one day thirty years later he and I were on an elevator together and I got to thank him. Because of him I was able to live a full life. Recently I became a great grandmother. I will always be grateful for his actions.
In the workplace I never heard him raise his voice in anger . He always treated the nursing staff with respect.
I bet he was a great husband and father.
Wishing you peace and contentment as time goes forth.

Posted by Debbie Ware - Battle Creek, MI - Coworker   March 26, 2020

Kathy & family:

So sorry about your loss of Fred. Thoughts & prayers for each of you!!! We're very grateful for the each of the fun times shared with families of our East Hamilton Lane community. Loving prayers continue!

Posted by Maxi Nash-Thomason - Bonita Springs, FL   March 25, 2020

My sympathy to Kathy and family. A great neighbor and one time exploratory fishing partner.
Don Thomason

Posted by Don Thomason - Bonita Springs, FL   March 25, 2020

Our deepest sympathy to Kathy and the entire Sawchuk family. Fred was a special friend and neighbor and we will always remember the many lakehouse memories we shared together. He was not only a respected doctor, but a hard working family man, with a quick sense of humor and a love for fishing. We will miss him! Gary & Connie Katz

Posted by Gary Katz - Battle Creek, MI - Friend   March 24, 2020

Sorry for your lost JANICE McKAY

Posted by A friend   March 24, 2020

Kathy and family: My deepest sympathy. I am deeply saddened to read about Fred's passing. He was one of my favorite people to chat with at the Calhoun County Medical Society meetings. He had a kind and gentle demeanor. I also saw him as a knee patient. You all are in my thoughts and prayers.

Posted by Diane Cummins - Concord, MI   March 24, 2020

Kathy, please accept my deepest condolences at the loss of Fred. I shall miss him dearly. Know that I share in your sorrow and that he will be in my prayers.

Posted by stephen fedele - battle creek, MI - Friend   March 23, 2020

Our sincere condolences to Dr. Fred Sawchuk's family. Fred was a dear friend and partner in practice. We spent many hours together in surgery and the clinic. There was never a moment I couldn't count on his knowledge, surgical skill, and great sense of humor over the years we worked together. Sandy and I are very saddened by his passing. He will be greatly missed.
Our prayers to his family.
John and Sandy Morgan

Posted by John and Sandy Morgan - Chapin, SC - Coworker   March 23, 2020

I'm so sorry to learn of Dr. Sawchuk's passing. I worked for him at BC Orthopeadics in the 1990's. He was such a kind and gentle man, both to his patient's and his co-workers. My thoughts and prayers go to his family.
Marcia Wells

Posted by Marcia Wells - Mishawaka, IN - Coworker   March 23, 2020

My sincere condolences for the passing of Dr Sawchuk. I had the opportunity to work with Dr. Sawchuk both on the Leila orthopedic unit and in his office. A wonderful man and caring physician. He will be missed.My thoughts and prayers are with his family.

Posted by Joyce (Dowd) Byers - Kalamazoo, MI - Coworker   March 23, 2020

I am so sad to hear of the passing of Dr. Sawchuk. I had the privilege of working for him at College Street Orthopaedics and at Battle Creek Orthopaedics. He was a kind and caring physician, boss, and person.
My sincere sympathies to his wife, children, and grandchildren. He will be missed.

Posted by Dee Lind - BATTLE CREEK, MI - Coworker   March 23, 2020

Please know how deeply saddened I am and how much I respected and admired this man. He was not only my doctor, but a neighbor and friend for over 40 years. My sincere sympathy to your family.

Posted by Leslie Bowers - East Leroy, MI - Friend   March 23, 2020

I had the privilege, over sixty years ago, of being a classmate and fraternity brother of a very serious, bright and athletic Fred Sawchuk.

Posted by Felix Fliss - East Lansing, MI - classmate   March 22, 2020

We were very saddened by the loss of Dr. Fred Sawchuk. He was my very good friend, colleague, tennis partner and neighbor for over forty years.
We will miss him dearly.
Posted by Margaret, Kathy and Charlie Chen

Posted by Chihsing "Charlie" Chen - Battle Creek, MI - Friend   March 22, 2020

I am so saddened to learn of Dr. Sawchuks passing. My condolences to his family. Dr. Sawchuk was one of the finest men and one of the best surgeons that I had the privilege of working with in surgery for 30 years. I knew that if I had a day of surgery working with Dr. Sawchuk, it was going to be a great day!
He was kind, compassionate, skilled, and very funny. He was wonderful to his patients, and I loved how he always spoke so warmly of his family!
Prayers to his family,
Linda Cumback

Posted by Linda Cumback - Battle Creek, MI - Coworker   March 22, 2020

Dr Sawchuk was a fine orthopedic surgeon who served the community well. I often referred patients to him. My sincere condolences to his family.
Dr Kurt Barrett

Posted by Kurt Barrett - Battle Creek, MI - Coworker   March 22, 2020

Was very sad to learn Dr. Sawchuk had passed away. He was my doctor for several years. He was always friendly and caring with my treatment. Prayers for his wife and family.

Posted by Marianne Wells - Springfield, MI - Acquaintance   March 22, 2020

We are so saddened by the loss of Dr. Sawchuck. For several years we have enjoyed sitting near him and Mrs. Sawchuck at the BC Symphony concerts. We know how much he enjoyed the orchestra and beautiful music. We will miss him deeply.
Hon. Sam, Teresa and Michael Durham

Posted by Teresa Durham - Battle Creek, MI - Acquaintance   March 21, 2020

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time. I worked with him in surgery. He was such a wonderful man.

Posted by Charlene Snyder - Battle Creek, MI   March 21, 2020

This man, along with his partner, Dr. Timothy Linquist, essentially saved my life in 1984/85. Dr. Sawchuck was my secondary surgeon and he would always tell me that he wished all his patients were like me. He had the most dry sense of humor ever and always made me laugh, even during times when it was hard too. I loved this man. May he rest in peace.

Posted by Petra McGinnis Armstrong - Georgetown, KY - Acquaintance   March 21, 2020