Frederick W. Thul, 88, a
lifelong resident of North Plainfield, N.J., died Saturday, May 1, at
the Hunterdon Care Center in Flemington, N.J.
Thul was a graduate of North Plainfield High School, class of 1940,
where he excelled in academics and athletics. He was undefeated in the
high jump for three years and set new records for North Plainfield High
School and Somerset County. He was inducted into the North Plainfield
High School Hall of Fame in 2004. Thul continued his studies at Newark
College of Engineering, where he lettered in track his first year.
Thul was a veteran of World War II, having served as a sergeant with
the 298th Antiaircraft Artillery Ordinance Co. and 106th Infantry in
Europe. After the War, he joined his father, Nick Thul, in the family
business, Thul Auto Parts in Plainfield. Under Fred’s reign, he
expanded the business from a single location into three separate
companies, Thul Auto Parts with seven locations; Thul Engine &
Equipment, which was one of the top distributors of remanufactured
engines in the country; and Thul Machine Works, which enjoyed a
reputation as one of the finest contract manufacturers in the tri-state
area. Thul retired in 1991 and turned the businesses over to his sons,
who continue his legacy today.
Thul was a founder of the NJ Automotive Wholesalers Association and
longtime member and former President of the Mid-Jersey Automotive
Wholesalers Association and a member of the Plainfield Chamber of
Commerce. Thul was also one of the founders of Regional Automotive
Warehouse Corp. in Newark, N.J., which became one of the leading
wholesale auto parts distribution companies in the northeast. He was a
founder of the Plainfield Curling Club and served three years on the
North Plainfield Board of Education. He was passionate about his
family, family history and genealogy.
He is survived by his wife, Louise; four sons, Rick and his wife,
Bonnie, Nick and his wife, Marjorie, Jim and his wife Lorna, and Larry
and his wife, Jennifer; nine grandchildren, Melissa, Eric, Dana, Karin,
Nicholas, Lauren, Garrett, Larry and Alex; and one great grandson,
Those who wish may make memorial contributions, can donate to:
Wyckoff House & Association
5816 Clarendon Road
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11203
Hunterdon Medical Center
2100 Wescott Drive
Flemingto, N.J. 08822
For additional information or to express condolences, visit www.fanwoodmemorial.com.