Carroll County CCC - Biography

 

Fred J. Powers, Sr.

Fred Powers was born September 20, 1914, in Albany, Delaware County, Indiana, the oldest of nine children born to Harlan Dent and Susie Minerva (Evans) Powers. Fred  moved to Carrollton, Kentucky, in 1934 to join the Civilian Conservation Corps. The CCC was a public program that put over three million young adults to work during the Great Depression of the 1930s and 1940s.

He was assigned to Camp General Butler, in Carrollton. He worked as a cook and was a member of the baseball team and continued his love of cooking and sports throughout his life. While in the CCCs, he met Mildred Hendricks. They eloped and married February 8, 1936, in Vevay, Indiana. While away from home, Fredís father, one brother (to whom he was closest friends), and two sisters died from Tuberculosis.

While in the CCCs, Fred was Chief Cook; however, when he eloped without permission, his rank was busted down to regular cook. Being in the CCCs was like being in the military, with barracks, officers, etc. Fred was making $25 a month, $20 of which was mailed home to his mother in Indiana because the purpose of the CCCs was to provide jobs to support families. Since most of his wages were mailed home, Fred and Mildred had just $5 a month to live on when they first married.

When World War II began, Fred was past the age to be drafted, so he worked a swing shift as a security guard at the Jeffersontown Proving Ground in Charleston, Indiana. Here they made and tested artillery shells. Fred didn't own a car at the time; however, he car pooled and came home to Carrollton at the end of his shift.

After the War, Fred began working for Kentucky Utilities in 1947 as meter reader. He was promoted to service crew and then local manager in Owenton. At that time, Fred and Mildred moved to Owenton with sons J.O. and Fred Jr. Their sister, Carolyn, married after completing her nurses training at Baptist Hospital in Louisville and remained in Carrollton. In Owenton, Fred and Mildred made many friends. He was active in the community, serving as president of the Owenton Rotary Club, a member of the Owen County Chamber of Commerce, and a trustee of Owenton First Baptist Church. Fred moved back to Carrollton to become the KU District manager and retired from that position in 1981.

Fred was a big University of Kentucky basketball fan and never missed game on television. He loved dancing and was very good at it. He and Mildred were members of the Butler Generals Square Dancing Club.

Mildred passed away February 18, 1993, and Fred lived at home on Comamnche Trail in Carrollton for several years before moving to New Horizons Assisted Living on September 22, 2002. He passed away January 11, 2004, at the Carroll County Hospital. Besides his children, he left behind several grandchildren, great grandchildren and other family who love and miss him.