Marshall Fredericks was born in Rock Island, Illinois and graduated from Cleveland School of Art. He studied extensively in Europe, taught at Cranbrook and served in World War II.
Over the years he has exhibited and won awards internationally and has important sculptures throughout the United States and abroad. His works include the thirty foot “Victory Eagle:, the five times life size “Spirit of Detroit”, and the “Fountain of Eternal Life”. One of his most famous pieces still remains the Cross and Crucifix, the centerpiece of this Shrine.
The concept of the Cross was first discussed by the founding Pastor, Msgr. Charles Brophy and Mr. Fredericks in 1950. The Cross was erected in 1954 and the Corpus added in 1959.
After the completion of this project and dedication, Marshall wrote, “it is difficult for me to express the happiness I have felt in producing this work for you. It has been the most satisfying thing I have ever done.” Mr. Fredericks donated his time and talent. The cost for the figure of Christ, $50,000, was paid for by donations. The full size plaster model of Christ now hangs in the Marshall Fredericks Gallery at Saginaw Valley State University.
Mr. Frederick’s last visit to the Shrine was in June 1996 on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Parish and Shrine. He died in Detroit in 1998.