COL (Ret) John E. Freeman, 91, of Shelbyville

COL (Ret) John E. Freeman, 91, of Shelbyville, passed away Tuesday, March 28, 2023, at his residence.


He was born October 15, 1931, in Martin Co., IN. to Frank Freeman and Marie (Bolton) Freeman.


John was a member of the Church of Christ in Shelbyville for many years.  His life’s pride and joy included his wife of over 69 years, his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.  He was proudly active in all their activities. Everyone’s lives he touched; he made feel special.  He was an avid gardener and took pride in sharing his harvest with family and friends.  He enjoyed his many convertibles, was involved in a local convertible club, and enjoyed restoring them. 


John’s career began with Milwaukee Railroad in 1948, retiring in 1968.  He joined the Indiana National Guard where he started his 40-year military career in 1951 with the U.S. Army.  In 1970 he became a Flight Instructor.  From 1977 to 1988, he was the Army Aviation Support Facility Commander.  He retired from Civil Service remaining a member of the Indiana National Guard until his retirement in 1991. After retirement, he continued his passion as a pilot working for Air Kentucky, Comair, and serving on the Shelbyville Municipal Airport Board of Aviation Commissioners.


He married Kathleen (Kopp) Freeman on June 13, 1953, and she survives.


John is also survived by his sons, Paul Freeman (wife, Valerie), Philip Freeman; daughter, Theresa Griffin (husband, Frank); grandchildren: Ted Freeman, Ben Freeman (wife, Silvana), Tim Freeman (wife, Marissa), Philip Wells, Natasha Merrick, Kodey Griffin (wife, Katelyn), Errick Freeman, Ryan Rhoades (wife, Christel), Alicia Rhoades; great grandchildren: Naomi, Adalynn, Harlym, Violet, Easton, Ian, Bowen, Christian, Zeya, Isla, Charley, Oliver,  sisters: Geraldine Jackson, Ruth Wininger.


John was preceded in death by his parents, his son Mark Freeman, grandson, Matthew Freeman and sister Maxine Lewis.


Visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m on Monday, April 3, 2023, at Murphy-Parks Funeral Service, 703 S. Harrison Street, Shelbyville, IN 46176.


Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, April 4, 2023, at the funeral home with Clovis Parsley officiating.


Burial will be in Whispering Hope Memorial Gardens in the Heroes of Honor & Glory section.  Military funeral honors will be conducted by the Indiana Army National Guard military funeral honor unit.


Funeral Directors, Greg Parks, Sheila Parks, Stuart Parks, and Darin Schutt are honored to serve John’s family.


Memorial contributions may be given to Our Hospice of South-Central Indiana, 2626 17th Street, Columbus, IN. 47201, and Honor Flight Program.


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