Saturday, February 23, 2013

SSG Willie James Freeman, Sr., United States Army, Ret.

Willie James Freeman, Sr., was born July 17, 1953 at Vredenburgh, Alabama, and passed away January 26, 2013, aged 59.

Willie married Lorraine Freeman on July 12, 1975.

Willie proudly served his country in the United States Army as a cook.  He served for 17 years, and retired in 1988.

On February 1, an interment service was held at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery at Killeen, Texas.  In attendance at the committal were the Patriot Guard Riders who had posted fifty American flags along the roadway.  As the hearse passed through the flags, the Riders stood at attention and saluted.

After the flag draped coffin was moved from the hearse to the committal shelter, the Riders formed a line of flags along the front of the shelter during the service.

Major Perez, of the United States Army Chaplain Corps, addressed the gathered family and friends.  He said that they were there to celebrate the life of Willie Freeman.  He invited the family and friends to share their memories of Willie.

Willie was described as being a dedicated husband and Dad, who would help anyone.  He was an avid sports fan and loved to cook.  One of the young ladies told of how Willie had taught her to add milk to scrambled eggs to make them better.  A tale that drew a good laugh.

Major Perez read scripture from the Bible and led the gathering in The Lord's Prayer.  He concluded his remarks with the observation that Willie had served his country and his family, and that they were all here to close this chapter in his life.

The United States Army Honor Detail rendered full military honors.  The detail of five rifles fired three volleys of fire, representing Duty, Honor and Country.  The detail stood at attention, with rifles at present arms, as the Army Bugler played taps.  All in attendance, facing the coffin, and offering the appropriate salute.

After taps, the detail moved to the committal shelter and folded the American flag that covered the coffin into a tight triangle.  The folded flag was passed to a Non-Commissioned Officer who presented it to Willie's wife of 37 years, on behalf of a grateful nation and the United States Army as a token of appreciation for his honorable and faithful service.

SSG Willie Freeman, Sr. was laid to rest on the sloping plain of the cemetery hill.  The American flag at the top of the hill flew at half-staff in his honor.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, four children, two grandchildren, other dear family and friends, and over 30 nieces and nephews that he loved dearly.

A Prayer for Dad

Lord, Shepherd my dad today
In green pastures let him lay
To still waters guide his way
Restoreth his soul, I pray

Lead him in the paths of right
Through the valley give him light
When he's afraid ease his fright
 With Thy rod and staff lend might

Prepare a table of spoil
Annointest his head with oil
Give to him a cup that's royal
Let goodness follow his toil

And Thy mercy cease never
May he dwell in Thy house forever
This I ask in Jesus' name, Amen.

John 14:2  -  In my Father's house are many mansions:  if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you. 

With thanks to the family for biographical information.

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