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Frederick Karl Schilling Jr. was a retired CIA senior officer and decorated World War II veteran.
Frederick Karl Schilling Jr. was a retired CIA senior officer and decorated World War II veteran. (HANDOUT)

Frederick Karl Schilling Jr., retired CIA senior officer and decorated World War II veteran, died of cardiac arrest April 27 at Howard County General Hospital. The Columbia resident was 93.

Born in Richmond, Ky., he was the son of Frederick Karl Schilling Sr., a World War I veteran and beverage bottling plant owner, and Ethel Glover, a homemaker and church volunteer. He was a 1940 Madison High School graduate. He joined the Kentucky National Guard and went into active duty in early 1941.

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He was assigned to England to prepare for the Allied invasion of France. He served in the infantry and was a tank officer. He landed on Omaha Beach on June 7, 1944. He was wounded in Cherbourg, France, and was awarded a Bronze Star for "heroic achievement" in Normandy, France, as well as a Purple Heart.

Mr. Schilling remained in the Army reserves and retired in 1972 as a lieutenant colonel.

After leaving military service, Mr. Schilling earned a bachelor of arts degree in history and mathematics from Eastern Kentucky State College. He then received a master's degree and a doctorate from Indiana University. He earned a literature degree from Trinity College in Dublin and did additional graduate work at the London School of Economics as an early post-war Fulbright Scholar.

According to a biography supplied by his family, Mr. Schilling retired in 1976 as a senior officer of the CIA's Operations Directorate. He joined the security agency in 1951 and held posts in Paris and Oslo, Norway. He became Scandinavia's branch chief for seven years and held career management staff positions before his retirement. He received the agency's Intelligence Medal of Merit.

He lived in Paris in the 1950s.

"He spent an unusually long time in both Paris and Oslo. He was well regarded for his work," said his daughter, Elin C. Schilling of Arlington, Va.

In 1964, when the Rev Martin Luther King Jr. came to Oslo to receive the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964, Mr. Schilling met the civil rights leader.

"It was a proud event of his posting in Norway," his daughter said.

While overseas, he attended opera and theater.

He moved to Columbia in 1977 and joined the Second English Lutheran Church on Briarclift Road in Hunting Ridge, where he became congregational president.

"The signature thing about Frederick Schilling was that after being a successful warrior and diplomat, he shifted gears and in later life became a man of peace," said his son-in-law, Bruce Woolman of Alexandria.

Mr. Schilling became active in the lay leadership of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, formerly the Lutheran Church in America.

Among his positions, he was elected to the boards of the church-wide Division for Professional Leadership and the Deaconess Community. For nine years he was chairman of the Division for Ministry of the Delaware-Maryland Synod.

He also was a board member of the National Lutheran Home for the Aged in Rockville. He was a board member of the Lutheran Historical Society of the Mid-Atlantic based in Gettysburg, Pa. He served two terms as president of the Congregational Councils of Rockville's Trinity Lutheran Church.

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A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at New Hope Lutheran Church, 8575 Guilford Road in Columbia, where he was a member.

His wife of 63 years, Lucille Cameron Schilling, a homemaker and community volunteer, died in 2009.

In addition to his daughter, survivors include a son, Frederick K. Schilling III of Eldersburg.

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