Cover photo for Frank M. Grunwald's Obituary
Frank M. Grunwald Profile Photo

Frank M. Grunwald

d. August 30, 2023


Frank M. Grunwald, of Indianapolis, passed away on August 30, 2023 at the age of 90.  Frank  was born in Olomouc, Czechoslovakia to Vilma Eisenstein Grunwald and Dr. Kurt Grunwald in 1932.  He and his father were both Holocaust survivors.  His mother and older brother, John perished in the Auschwitz gas chambers in July of 1944.  Frank miraculously escaped the gas chamber (at the age of eleven) when another prisoner shoved him from the death row into a group of older boys who were saved in order to be part of the Nazi slave labor population.
Frank and his father escaped from communist Czechoslovakia in the fall of 1949 and lived in London, England for two years.  They immigrated to the United States in the spring of 1951.
He and his family’s World War II experiences were documented in the movie “Misa’s Fugue”. A significant part of the movie was produced by students from Fleetwood High School in Fleetwood, PA under the direction of Sean Gaston.
Frank was a frequent speaker about his and his family’s experiences during the World War II Nazi occupation and imprisonment.
Frank received his professional degree in Industrial Design form Pratt Institute of Brooklyn, NY and had a long, successful career in product design and new product development with the General Electric Company, Philco Ford and later with Thomson Multimedia in Indianapolis.  He enjoyed sharing is knowledge and experiences with industrial design students and was a visiting lecturer on design and design research at the School of Visual and Performing Arts, Purdue University.  He was also a frequent visitor/lecturer at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design.
Frank was an avid sculptor and artist.  His love for art and music accompanied him throughout his life. He and his wife of 62 years,  Barbara  belonged to the IMA’s Second Century Society and the Design Arts Society.  They were also members of the American Pianists Association.  Frank was also a member of the American Society of Industrial Designers and Broad Ripple Sertoma.
Frank’s greatest love was his family.  His wife, Barbara; his two sons, Tim (Dawn) and Andy, and his five grandchildren, John, James, Anne, Stephanie and Drew survive him.
There are no services planned for this time.  Friends may leave a message of condolence or a tribute to Frank at

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