Obituaries » John L. Freeman
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September 19, 1937 - August 5, 2020
John Lee Freeman, 82, a long-time resident of DeSoto, Missouri passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, August 5, 2020.
Born in Iron Mountain, Missouri to the late Mr. Glen and Mrs. Irene (Gross) Freeman, John was a beloved brother to Vernon (Gaye) Freeman of Irving, Texas, Margaret Freeman of Joplin, Glenda Johnson of Festus, Ray (Martha) Freeman of Benton, Arkansas, Jerry (Donna) Freeman of Farmington, Sara Edmundson of Hillsboro, and Elaine (Dennis) Gannon of DeSoto. Sister-in-law Frances (Howard) Clark of St. Charles, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by brothers Wayne Freeman and Jack (Erleen) Freeman and sister June Ann (Joe) Blanton.
John is survived by his loving wife of 57 years, Arlena Sue (Norton) Freeman. Father to cherished children Martha Freeman (Tom Butzen) and Kathy Langdon and dedicated grandfather to Jenna Freeman, Samantha Lee and Brendan Lee. His latest joy was his two great grandchildren, Lani and Lila.
After earning both a Bachelor of Science and a Masters of Science from Northeast Louisiana State University, John went on to earn his PhD at Saint Louis University. A staunch believer in the power of education, John spent his lifetime teaching, leading, and influencing the future of K-12 education in Missouri. John began his career as a teacher in Lesterville, Missouri. After two years, he moved to DeSoto, where he spent the next 29 years as a teacher, coach, and served as Assistant Superintendent. After retiring from public K-12 education, John became dean of education at Missouri Baptist University in St. Louis where he was a leader in shaping the future of teacher education.
He was a long time, faithful member of the First Baptist Church of DeSoto. Upon retiring, John dedicated himself to both his family and to making an impact on his much loved DeSoto community by volunteering with the local food pantry and the DeSoto chapter of Rotary International. John also was an active member of DeSoto P.R.I.D.E., people really interested in DeSoto environment; and served several terms on the De Soto School Board.
John L. Freeman’s life of service and dedication will be remembered and celebrated on Saturday, August 8, 2020 at 2:00 pm at Dietrich-Mothershead Funeral Home, 220 North Main Street, DeSoto, Missouri. Visitation will be held on Saturday, August 8 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm for the public at Dietrich-Mothershead Funeral Home, DeSoto. Attendees need to wear a mask.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a contribution in John’s memory to the DeSoto Food Pantry, the DeSoto Rotary, DeSoto Contact or the First Baptist Church of DeSoto.