H.W. “Bill” Fraas


July 9, 1931 - April 5, 2023 

H.W. “Bill” Fraas, DDS, 91, of Hot Springs, S.D., passed away April 5, 2023, at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Hot Springs.

Bill was born in Dayton, Ohio on July 9, 1931, to Harry and Margaret (Williamson) Fraas. He graduated from Worthington High School in 1949, attended the college of Dentistry at Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, in 1956. While on the OSU track team he set a record in hurdles which still stands. He was in the ROTC Armor Division. Bill went on to service in the Dental Corps with the United States Army in Albuquerque, N.M., from 1956 until his honorable discharge in 1958, at the rank of Captain.

Bill was a member of the Kappa Sigma Social Fraternity and a member of the Psi Omega Professional Fraternity.

Bill married Alice Jayne “AJ” Griffith on June 10, 1954. The couple lived outside Williamsport, Ohio, and Bill practiced dentistry in private practice in Circleville, Ohio for 15 years. In 1973, they moved to Hot Springs, where Bill was a dentist at the VA Hospital for 20 years.

Bill had a very active life as he was an Eagle Scout, member of the Kiwanis Club, in Circleville; Methodist Church in Worthington and Williamsport, Ohio (and member of the choir in Williamsport); S.D. State Chairman for Ducks Unlimited; S.D. State Chairman for the National Wild Turkey Federation; life member of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation; life member of the National Rifle Association; member of the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks 2005 West River Issues Working Group; a committee member for the “Turn In Poachers” S.D. Game and Parks;  member of the guidance committee for the Cascade Road Nature Conservancy (Whitney Preserve) project; Board Member of the Black Hills Playhouse;  Hot Springs School Board member; member of the Hot Springs, Chamber of Commerce Agriculture Committee; member of the Hot Springs BPOE; member and director of the Western South Dakota Buckaroo. Bill was a long time Red Cross blood donor. Bill established one of the first conservation easements in South Dakota, on his property, to protect wildlife. 

Bill loved fishing and hunting, especially bird hunting with his beloved bird dogs. He and AJ ran a small herd of cattle and he enjoyed helping rancher friends with their brandings. He loved his adopted state of South Dakota and took great pride in going out, always dressed in his best western attire. 

Bill was preceded in death by his father and mother, his loving wife AJ, and his sister, Ann Kramer.

Survivors include two sons, Wyatt (Jeanie) Fraas of Coleridge, Neb., and Douglas (Kelly) Fraas of Redmond, Oreg.; daughter, Tracy (Mark) Plessinger of Hot Springs; three grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

Visitation will be held Saturday, May 13, 2023, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at Chamberlain McColley Funeral Homes in Hot Springs. Private committal services will be held at Evergreen Cemetery in Hot Springs.

Memorials may be sent to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, RMEF.org or the Black Hills Playhouse, blackhillsplayhouse.com

Arrangements have been placed in the care of Chamberlain McColley’s Funeral Home in Hot Springs. Written condolences can be made at www.chamberlainmccolleys.com

Fall River County Herald Star

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