Fred was born in Oshawa in 1926 and later moved to Whitby where he attended Brock Street Public School and Whitby High School. His early hockey memories include playing street hockey using a salmon can filled with water and frozen as a puck, and later, when he obtained skates, graduating, so to speak, to play on a frozen quarry pond.
In his high school years, Fred excelled in Track & Field, winning the Junior Championship (1940), the Intermediate Championship (1941 and 1942), and the Senior Championship (1943), capturing the Maundrell Cup, the Langevin Cup, the Bassett Cup and the King Challenge Cup respectively. All of these Cups were very coveted trophies at the time.
In 1943, Fred joined the RCAF and subsequently obtained a leave of absence so he could finish high school. During this period, he was a member of the Ontario Champion Juvenile B Hockey Team. After his discharge from the service in 1945, Fred enrolled at the Ontario Veterinary College while also resuming his hockey career, playing on the Whitby Red Wing Junior C team that won the Ontario Championship in 1945-46.
Fred received his DVM from the University of Toronto in 1949, followed by a Diploma in Veterinary Public Health in 1950. For the next several years, Fred worked in the field of Public Health in Toronto, Peterborough, and Belleville, improving the safety and quality of milk, meat and dairy products in Ontario. In 1962, he transferred to the Provincial Veterinary Services Branch Laboratory in Ridgetown and he became Laboratory Head in 1968.