Obituary: Fred Rose |

Obituary: Fred Rose

Services for Fred C. Rose, formerly of Grass Valley, are pending.

Mr. Rose died Friday, Dec. 28. He was 85.

He was born in San Francisco and began a musical career in the Navy in the 1930s. During World War II, he was Adm. “Bull” Halsey’s bandmaster in the Pacific Theater.

Following a short stint in civilian life after the war, he enlisted in the Army and rose to become the assistant leader for the U.S. Army Band in Washington, D.C. After leaving the Army in 1962, he moved back to the Bay Area and became the director of music for the San Rafael Military Academy.

In 1962, he led the nationally recognized Oakland Municipal Band, a position he held for 26 years until his retirement in 1987. Mr. Rose and his wife, Katie, were credited with keeping the band together after Proposition 13 budget cuts eliminated most city support for it in the late 1970s.

He was business representative for Musicians Union Local 6. He also operated a piano restoration shop and gave private music lessons.

Upon his retirement, the Roses moved to Grass Valley. He donated his extensive music collection to Sierra College.

He is survived by his stepson, Matt Lovett; daughter-in-law, Olivia; and grandchildren Lauren and Caroline, all of Pleasant Hill.

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