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Rev. Harold C. Freeman Jr.

Rev. Harold C. Freeman Jr. passed away Dec. 30, 2009, at the Trinity Care Center in Farmington after a year-long battle with major illness.

He was born in Horton, Kan., on Sept. 27, 1926, to Harold Sr. and Margaret Freeman. The family eventually moved to Los Angeles, Calif., where Harold enlisted in the U.S. Navy (1943-1946) and graduated from Whittier High School (1944).

In 1950, he married his dental hygienist Joella Wilson. After that, he received a bachelor of chemistry degree at the University of California Berkeley (1952). He worked for a short time at the Union Oil Company in San Pedro, Calif.

Soon thereafter, he felt called to do something more. He moved his family to San Anselmo, Calif., to attend the San Francisco Theological Seminary. He received his bachelor of divinity in 1959 and his master of divinity in 1971. In 1959, he moved his family to Minnesota where he pastored the Presbyterian churches in Baker and Downer (near Fargo, N.D.) In 1963, he was called to pastor the First United Presbyterian Church in Hastings, Minn. He remained the pastor there until his retirement in 1988.

During his career, he was active in numerous different causes. In 1965, he participated in the Civil Rights March from Selma to Montgomery, Ala. He was privileged to meet Martin Luther King Jr. during the march. He was involved in many ministries including Loveline and Paraclete Ministries. After retirement, he authored the book "He Turned My Wine Into Water." In the book, he used lessons from his own life to teach what the Bible says about freedom, alcohol and alcoholism.

Harold loved his family dearly. He is survived by his loving wife, Joella; sons, Mark (Pat), Chris, Tim (Mary) and Tom Freeman; grandchildren, Jeremy, Jason (Rachel), Jesse (Aasha) and Joy; great-grandchildren Natalie, Carter, Hailey, Luke and Ella.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Harold Sr. and Margaret; his stepmother, Katherine; and sister, Margaret.

A memorial service will be held 10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 5, at Mt. Olivet Assembly of God Church, 14201 Cedar Ave., Apple Valley, Minn. Friends and family gathering 1 hour prior to service. Interment Ft. Snelling National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials will be given to Teen Challenge.