Betty Jean (Mather) Freeman was born on March 9, 1932, to Orval H. and Stella M. (Walker) Mather in Tarkio, Missouri. She graduated from Tarkio High School and married her high school sweetheart, Dean E. Freeman, on December 24, 1950. Betty passed away at her home in Merriam Woods, Missouri, on April 12, 2021, at the age of 89. Prior to her passing, Dean and Betty celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary.
After living in several places as young adults, they settled down on a farm near Oregon, Missouri. While Dean operated a bulldozer and raised cattle, Betty worked for Holt County Farm Bureau for 36 years. During that time, they also contributed to establishing the First Baptist Church of Oregon. She was a member of the Holt County Republican Club, the Garden Club, Holt County Historical Society, and Girl Scouts.
After retirement, they moved to southern Mis-souri where Betty became involved with the Bridge of Faith Community Church, Christian Women’s Connection, Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), and the Taney County Republican Women’s Club. Betty enjoyed learning and became the oldest student enrolled at Northwest Missouri State University. She also enjoyed country line dancing, watercolor painting, and sharing Jesus with others. The last resulted in her taking several mission trips both nationally and internationally.
Betty was preceded in death by her parents; a daughter, Pamela Shuman; and son-in-law, Richard (Denny) Shuman. She is survived by her husband, Dean Freeman; brother, Dean (Shirley) Mather of Rock Port, Missouri; son, Michael Freeman of Oregon; and daughter, Rebecca (Russell) Hendrix of Powersite, Missouri. Betty also had 11 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.
A visitation will be held on April 14, 2021, from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at Bridge of Faith Community Church in Rockaway Beach, Missouri. The family will also greet friends at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, April 16, 2021, at the Tarkio First Baptist Church, Tarkio, Missouri, preceding a celebration of life at 2:00 p.m. A graveside service at Tarkio Home Cemetery, Tarkio, will immediately follow.
Memorials to the Bridge of Faith Community Church, Merriam Woods Betterment Association, and the American Cancer Society in her name may be mailed to Betty Freeman Memorial, c/o Bridge of Faith Community Church, 296 Lake Street, Rockaway Beach, MO 65740. Online condolences may be left at www.chamberlainfuneral.com. Arrangements are under the direction of Whelchel Grace Funeral Home, Forsyth, Missouri, and Chamberlain Funeral Home, Rock Port.