Clark F. Freeman, 86, of Jonesville, a twin, born on March 11, 1937, to Hugh L. and Willie Alice “Bill” Freeman, and was called home to be with The Lord on Sunday, September 3, 2023.
Clark is survived by his wife, Patricia, daughters Theresa Carpenter and husband Dewitt, Dana Evans and husband Russell, and son Chris Freeman, all of Jonesville. Step daughters Teresa Frye and husband Scott and Anita Gable and husband Doug all of Jonesville. He is also survived by grandchildren Lee Carpenter and wife Caroline, Courtney Robertson and husband Dustin, Colt Carpenter and wife Annaston, Jessica Pentecost and husband Brad, Matt Evans, Brayden Freeman, Logan Freeman, and Brodey Freeman, Step grandchildren Kristen Pere and husband Tyler, Amber Hawthorne and husband Will, Ashley Frye, Landon Loyed, Will Gable and wife Ally, and David Frith and wife Mint. 7 great grandchildren, Kaylee, Kinley, Maddison, Korlee Mae, Corbin Grace, Witt, Thomas, Addilyn and Aubrey, and 8 step great grandchildren
Mr. Freeman is preceded in death by his parents, twin brother Curtis and his wife Gloria, sister Elizabeth Freeman Hill, grandson Corbin Carpenter, grandson-in-law Wyatt Kemp, and great grandchildren Hadley and Braxton Pentecost.
Funeral services for Mr. Freeman will be Wednesday, September 6, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. with Rev. Dustin Robertson, Rev. Larry Wagner and Rev Jack Knapp officiating. Visitation will be Tuesday, September 5, 2023 beginning at 6:00, all at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church, Jonesville. Burial will follow at Heard Cemetery in Manifest.
A member of Westside Baptist Church in Ferriday, Clark enjoyed teaching the adult Sunday school class. He loved the Lord, and his favorite books of The Bible were Psalm and Ecclesiastes.
Anyone who knew Clark, was certain of several things, he loved people and never met a stranger, he believed every word of the Bible, and was a hard worker having worked since the age of 5 on the family farm, dairy, and the feed mill. Later, he also custom baled hay, and sold commercial feed and seed. As young children, Clark and twin brother, Curtis, would milk cows at the dairy, bottle the milk, then deliver it to the residents of Jonesville, all before school started each morning. It was told that after arriving at school, the boys would often nap through the first class or two. Teachers knew the pair had been working since 3:30 a.m. each morning, and allowed them to rest before heading home for the afternoon milking and feeding chores.
As a young man, Clark served a short time in the U.S. Army before being honorably discharged. While there, he earned the respect of several high ranking officers, without a doubt because of his outstanding work ethics and cheerful personality. He once wrote a letter home to his brother Curtis that said something like,
“Dear Brother, Wish you were here. We get to swim twice a week and
sleep plum til 4 o’clock.”
Having been an accomplished farmer in Catahoula Parish raising cotton in the early years, later focusing on grain sorghum, corn, and soybeans, Mr. Freeman was nationally recognized for achieving top yields by the National Grain Sorghum Producers Association several times. Having sold feed and seed since the early 1970s, Clark was named a top dealer in the nation when he was recognized for Outstanding Sales Achievement by Dekalb Seed Company in 1973 and 1976. He was awarded the company’s National Dealer of the Year in 1988. For his outstanding sales and customer service, he was proudly welcomed into Dekalbs Winners Circle in 1988, 1989, 1990, 1992, and 1994. As an accomplished salesman, for not only Dekalb, but also for Moormans Feed Company and Agridyne, LLC (Mix 30 Liquid feed), Clark was often asked to speak at dealer meetings sharing his knowledge of products as well as tips for securing sales, always starting sessions with a joke or funny story.
In 1997 at the age of 80, Clark semi-retired” passing his Mix 30 liquid feed business on to his grandson, Colt Carpenter. However, he continued his hay business for a couple of more years until his health began failing. In recent years, Clark enjoyed his morning visits with friends at Larry’s One Stop until the business closed, then at Brad’s Barber Shop. He also enjoyed greeting the many friends and clients at his son’s business at Freeman Feed Mill, a business he, his father, and brother began in the 60’s, under the same name. More times than not, friends would be greeted by a huge smile shaded by his signature white hat, a firm hand shake and a hardy “What you say?” He was most generous and known for “giving the shirt off his back.” He found one of life’s pleasures in sharing sweet corn that first he raised, then after retiring, he shared the sweet corn raised by his son, Chris. He even shared with many people he didn’t know, being of the opinion that you didn’t give one person something without giving it to everyone there. Most recently, “Pappy” as his grandchildren called him, shared his stories with many by way of articles printed in the local newspaper, The Catahoula News Booster, because in his words, “I have something to say,” which was a well-known fact by anyone who knew him.
Clark loved making people laugh and had a gift of storytelling. He had a memory matched by few right up until the end. He had an unwritten list of never ending stories, and many times get so tickled while telling them, one may not understand what he was saying, but would laugh at him, maybe even forgetting about the tale itself. If you were in a hurry, Clark was not the person you wanted to run into at the store because you were in for a 30 minute (or longer) conversation…mostly a one-sided conversation where the listener couldn’t get a “word in edgewise.” Not only did Clark have the gift to talk, he was phenomenal with numbers. In his prime, he could figure a feed formula in a matter of seconds, many times in his head, or by scribbling the numbers on his signature white, pearl snap shirt.
To know Clark was to love him. He was a joy to be around, and considered everyone his neighbor. His word was his bond and to him, that, or his handshake, was better than any contract on a piece of paper. Clark Freeman will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved him, and his stories will no doubt live on through his countless friends and family.
Serving as pallbearers will be grandsons Lee Carpenter, Colt Carpenter, Matt Evans, Brayden Freeman, Brodey Freeman, grandson-in-law Brad Pentecost, step grandsons Will Gable, David Frith, and Landon Loyed. Honorary pallbearers are Chris Towell, Conley Manning, Chris Shivers, Buddy Rouse, Billy Rouse, Curt Freeman, Gerald Huffman, Brad Cockerham, Gordon Ray McCarver, Jimmy Smith, Dr. W. C. Coney, Pat McCaughy, Jimbo McMillin, Mark Fowler, Jack Jackson, Thomas Green, Nelson Poole, Jr. James Johnson, Bill Atkins and the rest of the Brad’s Barber Shop morning coffee crew.
In lieu of flowers, Mr. Freeman was adamant that memorials be sent to the Louisiana Baptist Children’s Home, 7200 Desiard Street, Monroe, LA 71203 or Westside Baptist Church, P O Box 877, Ferriday, LA 71334. Even in his passing, Clark Freeman was always thinking of others….A true testament to his character, generosity and love for people.
I’m 84 years young. I’ve always been called a farmer, and have wondered the real meaning of the word. When I was about 9 years old, my brother, Curtis, and I delivered milk to local residents in Jonesville, then the stores came later. Our morning started at 3:30 a.m. milking cows, then we delivered milk before daylight. We missed the first class of school each morning, and slept through the second class. I was in a café waiting on my daddy one day, and I overheard two men talking. One asked the other who my daddy was. The answer was “that’s just a poor old farmer.” With patches on his clothes he was considered a poor old farmer. That made me think, “what is a farmer?” I began to realize my daddy was a farmer – crops and dairy. So he was automatically considered poor, and sometimes ‘dumb.’ This was years ago when I was just a kid. But through the years, I still heard this. However, things have changed since then.
Through the years, I’ve learned this about a farmer: He believes in God and country, in that order. He takes his family to church. He may be a Sunday School teacher, he may even be a preacher. A farmer is a true American who believes in the Amendments of the United States, especially the first and second amendments. He’s active in the community. He is a multi-tasker, a veterinarian, a tiller of the soil, a mechanic, a doctor, a chemist, a meteorologist, welder, lawyer, bookkeeper, a visionary, a strategist, a teacher and a leader. A farmer is a statue of man who can perform the hardest of tasks that callus his hands while never complaining, yet he can reach down to a crying child, and comfort him or her with the gentlest of touches. Above all, he’s your neighbor, your friend, and his word is his bond.
A farmer never runs out of work. If he isn’t actually in the “doing” stage, working the soil, tending cattle, and so on, he’s constantly thinking of his next move that’s necessary to feed his family and provide the cheapest food source to feed our country.
A farmer’s ancestors were likely farmers too. In fact, they wrote the Declaration of Independence, beginning with “We the people….” It was written as the constitution of the land, the laws we are to live by. These laws applied in 1776 when the Constitution was written, and still apply today. Farmers wrote the Constitution, and farmers continue to stand by it today. Every 5 years, Congress approves what is called a Farm Bill. It is a common misconception of the use and purpose of the funds allocated in this Bill. Many think that all of this money goes to the farmer, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Approximately 80% goes to the “Nutrition Program” which is food stamp and other welfare programs. Only a small portion of those funds go to the American farmer. It is the farmer’s endless work and God’s grace that the American people are fed.
Now that you are reminded who a farmer really is, respect him for what he is and what he does. Never lose sight that he has always been the back bone of our country, and provides the very food you eat. Whether you realize it or not, you depend upon him. So remember, when you bow your head to thank God for your blessings and the food set before you, thank Him for the farmers who made it possible. After all, he is the true American farmer.
Clark F. Freeman,
Written October 2021