Fraser was killed in an explosion aboard the motor vessel Sundance. The accident threw four other people from the boat.
Fraser founded the Sea Pines Co., which in 1957 proposed the idea of building a two-lane road and bridge that would span Broad Creek and open development of Hilton Head Island at the southern tip of South Carolina.
In the decades since, Hilton Head has become the ninth-largest city in South Carolina with a population of almost 34,000 and attracts millions of vacationers a year.
At the time of his death, Charles Fraser was president of Charles E. Fraser Co., which provides planning services to developers nationwide.
Among other projects, he provided consulting services to The Walt Disney Co.'s town of Celebration in Orlando, Fla., and the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California on a new $5 billion reservoir.