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Dorothy Ellen (Gish) Freeland
Apr 30, 1918 - Aug 25, 2016
Posted by Janet Laubhan Flickinger


Dorothy Gish Freeland was born April 30, 1918 to parents Mary Ellen and David Wood Gish in Frederick, Oklahoma.  She passed peacefully from this world after 98 beautiful years on August 25, 2016.  

Dorothy experienced a unique childhood with two working parents.  The family owned the Gish Funeral Home as well as a furniture store and a farm.  They were able to survive the Great Depression and the days of the Dust Bowl because of these businesses.  Dorothy would proudly share that it was her mother who encouraged her father to press on through those challenging years, convinced they could persevere.   Because of a willingness to barter with their community, accepting livestock, produce or services as payment whenever possible, they were able to survive that difficult time.  
Dorothy attended the University of Oklahoma, graduating in 1940 with a degree in Elementary Education.  However, she would never use that degree to teach.  Instead she had to return to Frederick to help her mother run the funeral home and furniture store following her father’s untimely passing.  She remained there until her dear husband-to-be returned from service in WWII in 1945.  William Hillyer Freeland and Dorothy were married February 3, 1946.  They made their home in Norman, Oklahoma where Hillyer worked as the Director of the Oklahoma Memorial Union for the remainder of his career.  During that time they had two children, Judith (Judy) Diane and William Hillyer Jr.  

Dorothy served two years as president of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority while attending OU and remained active in alumni activities her entire life, with service on the House Corporation and as the District Alumna Chairman.  In addition to these Alpha Chi activities, she enjoyed membership in many different clubs and civic groups including the Norman Regional Hospital Auxiliary, PEO, University Women’s Club, sewing, book and garden clubs.  She was also a long time member of McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church.   In their retirement, Hillyer and Dorothy enjoyed many international trips as well as summers in Colorado.  They particularly enjoyed time with their grandchildren.  They never missed a ball game or concert and hosted every holiday dinner to bring the family together.  Dorothy could be quoted many times with how much she loved and appreciated her family.  She was so dearly loved by them as well.  

Dorothy is preceded in death by her husband of 60 years Hillyer, her brother David, her parents and her son-in-law Lawrence Agent. 

She is survived by her daughter Judy Agent and her three children Megan Curry (Jay), Kristin Meier (Scott), and William Agent (Marcie), as well as their children, Lillie and Steven Curry, Laurel Kate Meier, and L.J. and Wesley Agent.  She is also survived by her son and daughter-in-law Bill and Libby Freeland and their daughters Ellen Queen (Mike) and Emy Freeland, all of Arkansas.  

Services will be held at McFarlin Memorial UMC at 2pm Monday August 29, 2016. 

In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to be made to McFarlin Memorial UMC for student ministries missions or the church ministry of your choice. 

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