Nautical 21

Fred Dorman

November 6, 2021

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Fred Dorman, a lifelong Indianapolis resident, passed away November 6 at the age of 83. Fred was preceded in death by his beloved parents, Harry Robert and Dorothy Bilker Dorman.


Proficient in all sports, Fred was a member of the varsity tennis team at Shortridge High School, his alma mater, and was named a state champion in handball, racquetball, and tennis. His childhood backyard included a full basketball court, where his many high school friends gathered for raucous nightly games. In addition, he participated in the Tabernacle Presbyterian Church youth basketball leagues.


His love of sports was exceeded only by his affinity for cars, motorcycles, and boats. In fact, after attending Indiana University, Fred ventured into the family auto parts business and then started his own enterprise at just 20 years old, wholesaling heavy equipment and vehicles. He remained successfully self-employed until his retirement.


He proudly served in the U.S. National Guard and later married Sharon Cohen Dorman, his wife of 38 years, who survives him. Other survivors include his children Melissa Wittenbaum (Brad), Evan Dorman, Ryan Dorman (Lee), and Amanda Vela (Josh). They remember their father as fun-loving as he was attentive and remember with fondness his vocal coaching from the stands during their tennis games and waterskiing instruction from the boat to which they were tethered.


He also is survived by a brother, Dan Dorman, and two sisters, Judy Dorman Kaufman and Deborah Dorman Paul, who recall his many pranks and lessons, including how to throw underhanded basketball free-throws and drive seated on phone books well before their 16th birthdays. He was the doting grandfather of eight: Alex, Sarah, Jacob, and Andrew Wittenbaum; Rafael and Helio Dorman; and Jack and Lily Vela.

Funeral services will be private.

Memorial contributions may be made to Congregation Beth-El Zedeck, where Fred was a member; the Hasten Hebrew Academy of Indianapolis; and  

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Fred Dorman, please visit our floral store.


Private Service


Congregation Beth-El Zedeck
600 West 70th Street, Indianapolis IN 46260
Tel: 1-317-253-3441

Hasten Hebrew Academy of Indainapolis
6602 Hoover Road, Indianapolis IN 46260
Tel: 1-317-251-1261

Humane Society of Indianapolis
7929 North Michigan Rd, Indianapolis IN 46268
Tel: 1-317-872-5650

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