Helen Mae Freeman
Helen Mae Freeman
Jan. 30, 1918-Aug. 2, 2011
SOUTH BEND — Helen Mae Freeman was born at the home of her parents, Clarence and Hazel (Ritter) Hoover in Marshall County Jan. 30, 1918. She was the first of four children — Martha (Wheeler), Dwight and Dale, all deceased.
Helen graduated from Tyner High School where she met the love of her life — Roy Freeman. They were married at the Pine Creek parsonage April 16, 1938, and celebrated their 73rd wedding anniversary earlier this year. They lived in St. Joseph and Marshall Counties all their lifetime.
Helen was born and raised in the Pine Creek Church of the Brethren congregation and was active there throughout her lifetime until recent years when health issues restricted participation. She was active in Women’s Fellowship and served as their president on more than one occasion. She sang in the Ladies Chorus and was a Sunday School teacher. She and Roy were lifetime deacons and served conscientiously in that capacity.
Helen had four children: Duane (Joan Fricker), deceased; Gary, deceased; Shirley Braner and Mary Ann Haysley (David, deceased). She has 12 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and 8 great-great-grandchildren.
Helen was a very giving/caring person who cared for 38 newborn foster babies, occasionally two or three at one time. She volunteered one day a week for several years at the (then) Northern Indiana Children’s Hospital, working with handicapped children. She loved to sew and made numerous pajamas and gowns for the hospital residents.
Helen was a terrific cook and enjoyed sharing her meals with family and friends. Nearly every Sunday dinner included guests. Most of what she served came from their farm. A large garden was planted every year and vegetables were canned and frozen by the bushel. They raised their own beef, pork and chickens. Helen developed a door-to-door egg route in South Bend where she delivered eggs weekly.
She taught foods and baking to 4-H members. Active in Goodwill Auxiliary, Helen enjoyed sewing outfits for donated dolls. One year she dressed 130 dolls for Goodwill. In later years, she enjoyed sewing sleepwear and crocheting slippers and hats for the Neighborhood Center in Plymouth.
She and Roy moved from Plymouth to Southfield Village (South Bend) when they gave up driving. They enjoyed four years in Assisted Living before moving to Healthcare, more than two years ago.
A memorial service will be held Sunday, Aug. 21 at 4 p.m. at Pine Creek Church, corner of Pine and Stanton Roads, North Liberty, with Pastor Steve VanHouten (Pine Creek) and Chaplain Deb Hewitt (Chaplain, Southfield Village) officiating. The family will receive friends from 2 p.m. until time of service at the church.
Helen’s body was donated to Indiana University Medical School. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Pine Creek Church or to Center for Hospice Care, 111 Sunnybrook Ct., South Bend, 46637.
Condolences may be sent to the family through the website, www.johnson-danielson.com.
The Johnson-Danielson Funeral Home is assisting with arrangements.