William Patrick Freeney
Sept. 1, 1951 – Dec. 6, 2016
PORTLAND, Tenn. — William “Bill” Freeney, 65, died Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016, surrounded by his family in Portland, Tenn., after a courageous three-year battle with cancer. A private memorial service will be held in the spring. Mr. Freeney was born Sept. 1, 1951, in Jackson, the son of William S. Freeney and Evelyn D. Freeney of Rolling Fork. He grew up in Rolling Fork and was a graduate of Delta State University.
Bill loved his family, his dogs, plants, flowers, classic literature and going to sea. He left the rural Delta for a deck hand job at sixteen. Although he spent his career at sea he was an excellent and knowledgeable gardener who found joy in all living and growing things. When he died, Bill, was a Master Mariner with 49 years at sea and 34 years as a captain. He was a confident sailor and a natural leader of men throughout his lifetime of thrilling adventures, adversities, heavy storms and a variety of complex weather, mechanical and electronic failures and the inherent risk of fire and explosion associated with work at sea. His career ended with Gulfmark Americas as a captain of marine transportation services supporting offshore oil and gas industrial new construction and service for existing rigs in the deepwater basins of the Gulf of Mexico, North Pacific and Bering Sea, up and down the Eastern Seaboard and in the deepwater basins off the coast of Brazil and West Africa. His skills as a seaman, extraordinary ship handling and emergency response on many occasions brought his men and him to safety during his travels around the world. He loved the beauty and purity of the open sea and especially the view of it from the wheel house.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Survivors include his wife of 24 years, Susan Freeney and stepdaughter, Stacy Love, of Natchez; his beloved daughter, Abra Claire Pitt and husband, Tom, of Nashville; four grandchildren, Samuel and triplets, Georgia Rose, Benjamin and Jonathan Pitt; two sisters, Ebbie Crawford and husband, Darrell, and Nonie Freeney of Greenwood, Ind.; one brother, Carl David Freeney and wife, Sharon, of Lonoke, Ark.; one niece, Jessica Di Santo of Indianapolis, Ind.; and five nephews, Judd Crawford of Greenwood, Cal Freeney, Kirk Freeney and wife, Trisha, of Lonoke, Jason Sinkey of Sherwood, Ark., and Justin Sinkey of Little Rock, Ark.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Vanderbilt Children’s Cancer Research Center or to a charity of choice. Condolences can be sent to Susan at email@example.com or Claire at firstname.lastname@example.org and 2401 Vale Lane Nashville, TN 37214 or on Bill’s Facebook page.