James Lawrence Free, 90

by | April 25, 2012 2:23 pm

   James Lawrence Free, 90, passed away on Saturday morning, April 21, 2012. Services were held at First Baptist Church of Swainsboro on Tuesday, April 24, at 10 a.m. with Rev. Daniel Hoover and and Rev. Ray Jenkins officiating. Interment was in the Swainsboro City Cemetery with Dr. Bob Blankenship officiating with military honors.

   Pallbearers will be Tommy Howard, Gene Simmons, Willie Gunn, Scotty Nasworthy, David Kent, Dr. James Ray, Bobby Reeves and Kerney Lamb.

   Honorary pallbearers will be members of the Progressive Fellowship Sunday School Class, the Old Codgers’ Coffee Club, Jimmy Morgan, Theron Moore, Ed Bolton, Charles Drake and Bobby Sasser.

   Mr. Free was born in Moultrie, Ga., and was a graduate of Moultrie High School.  He served his country in the Army Air Corps during WWII from September 9, 1942, until his honorable discharge on October. 25, 1945.  He was a Tech Sgt. and flight engineer for a B-17 flight crew and became part of the newly formed 457th Heavy Bomb Group. His unit was sent to England where they became part of the Eighth Air Force, known as the Mighty Eighth, flying missions over France and Germany. On his 10th mission his plane was shot down, and he spent the next 13 months in a German Prisoner of War Camp. When he returned home, he met and married Mary Fields, and they were married 58 years before her death in 2004. Jim  owned and operated a plumbing and wiring business until his retirement, and he spent his latter years doing what he loved best: spending time with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  

     He was a member of First Baptist Church of Swainsboro where he enjoyed being a part of the Progressive Fellowship Sunday School Class. Over the years, he was an avid reader, loved music, and enjoyed crossword and jigsaw puzzles. He helped form the Lanier-Moore Post of VFW in Swainsboro, and was a member of the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum. After his retirement, he joined the Old Codgers’ Coffee Club.  

   He was preceded in death by his parents, James Fleming and Bessie Napier Free; his wife, Mary Fields Free; sisters, Virginia Free Hardy and Elizabeth Free Farmer; and a brother, John W. Free.

   Mr. Free is survived by his children: Jim and Tot Free and Carol and H.G. Yeomans, all of Swainsboro; grandchildren: Bonnie and Daniel Hoover of Dallas, Ga.; Russ and Stacy Yeomans of Nunez; Jamie and Michael Graston of Orange Park, Fla.; Bill and Haylee Free of Statesboro; and Beth and Blake Adams of Nunez; great-grandchildren, Josie and Colby Hoover of Dallas, Ga.; Kate Yeomans of Nunez; Luke, Jacob, Joshua and Noah Graston of Orange Park, Fla.; Peyton and Tucker Free of Statesboro; and Jake and Libby Adams of Nunez; a brother, Robert F. Free, of Savannah; and several nieces, nephews, cousins, and special friends.

   Memorials may be made to the charity of your choice.

   Durden-Hudson Funeral Directors of Swainsboro was in charge of arrangements.

  • James Lawrence Free, 90
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