, Salem, MA

October 20, 2012

Fred K. Finkel, 64

Marblehead, MA — Fred Finkel,well known jeweler, goldsmith/silversmith of Marblehead, Mass., died Oct 17, from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident several days earlier. He was 64. He was born and raised in Meriden Conn., son of Faye and Jack Finkel, and graduated in 1966 from Platt High School. While attending Brandeis University, he developed an interest in metals and gems and took a jewelry-making course on his way to graduating in 1972, majoring in Music. After college he apprenticed with a jewelry maker in Cambridge, Mass., learning his craft in the traditional style of apprenticeship.

In 1976 he moved to Marblehead where he opened his first shop. Thirty-six years later, he was a renowned craftsman not only working in silver and gold but also in bone, ivory, bone and shell. He was one of a small handful of craftsmen who was trusted by local clergy to repair religious ceremonial pieces and ornaments (chalises, torah breast plates) and also by museum directors to repair silver pieces fashioned 200 years ago by Paul Revere. All his pieces were done by hand using techniques that are hundreds of years old. For the past 20 years he has expanded his craft to include repair of antique walking sticks requiring intricate, precise, painstaking detail work.

Fred studied classical violin since Middle School and continued to play violin until the end of his life. He was a proficient classical violinist, but his passion was improvising on the 'fiddle' in the genre of traditional American and Northern European music. He played fiddle with 'the boys' who accompanied him on guitar and banjo almost without fail every Tuesday night for several years. He also dabbled with mandolin, washtub bass and spoons. Fred leaves loyal and loving friends who have been close for over forty years, ‘new’ friends from Marblehead from the past thirty years, uncountable scores of local customers who cherish his creations and were 'saved' by his repairs, and above all, Fred leaves the children he adored, and loved, Serena and Dario of Marblehead, and now three grandchildren, Jordan, Michael, ad Brooklyn. Whether you knew Fred Finkel for 47 years or 47 minutes, your life was blessed after meeting such a warm, honest, curious, talented, crazy-funny, and genuinely caring person. Among the people we call ‘one of a kind’ he was truly one of a kind.

ARRANGEMENTS: A Visitation will be held for Mr. Finkel on Sunday, October 21, 2012, at the Murphy Funeral Home, 85 Federal St., (Corner of North Street) Salem, from 4 to 8 p.m. His Funeral Service will begin during the visitation at 7 P.M.. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend. Burial will be held privately at the request of the family. For additional information, please see our online guest book, call 978-744-0479 or visit