Donald Lee “Tiny” Freer, age 74, of Turtle Lake died peacefully on May 6th, 2022 at Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire, WI.
Tiny was born May 1st, 1948 in Frederic, WI to Leon Frank and A. Patricia (Quatrone) Freer. He was the middle child between his older sister Cherie and his kid brother Van. He grew up in the Hatfield area of eastern Pennsylvania and graduated from Souderton High School in 1966.
After one year at Drake University in Des Moines, IA, Tiny enlisted in the Air Force and proudly served for four years on active duty, including a tour in Vietnam. After he was released from active duty, he returned to Drake to finish his degree in Actuarial Science, graduating in 1975. While at Drake he met Jeanne Lair and they got married in 1976.
Following graduation, he spent a short time working in Rhinelander with insurance claims before moving to Madison where he attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison to get his math teaching certification. Tiny was a longtime resident of DeForest from 1983 to 2017 and was active in the community, serving as scoutmaster for Boy Scout Troop 35 for nine years, fundraising and organizing for the construction of the DeForest Veteran’s Park, a member of Christ Lutheran Church, and a member of the Lion’s Club. He enjoyed working with many members of the community through his role as financial advisor with Lutheran Brotherhood (later Thrivent) for over 30 years.
Tiny was the type of person who could form an instant connection with anyone he met. He would regale them with stories about deer hunting in Northern Wisconsin, sheep shearing in Pennsylvania, and all the big fish he had caught over the years. He loved fishing (especially in Perrault Falls, Canada), Mopar cars, living in the country and on the lake, and telling PG-rated and non-PG-rated jokes (especially Ole and Lena ones). Most of all, he loved helping people: snow blowing driveways and sidewalks in the neighborhood, helping his elderly clients with taxes, taking care of the cars for his family, and so much more.
Tiny is survived by his two children, son Matthew Freer of Fort Collins, CO and daughter Laura (Chau) Le of St. Paul, MN; his two grandchildren: Evan and Alex Le; sister Cherie (Barry) Alderfer; nieces and nephews; and his ex-wife Jeanne (Jack) Flickinger.
Tiny was preceded in death by his brother, Van Buren Freer, and his parents.
Funeral services for Tiny will be held on Saturday, May 14, 2022 at 11:00 a.m., Parkview United Methodist Church, 234 Maple St N, Turtle Lake, WI 54889. Visitation will be the hour prior to the time of service at the church, from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. at Parkview United Methodist Church.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Deforest Veterans Memorial Foundation, Inc at http://deforestvmf.org/ or by mailing DeForest Veterans Memorial Foundation Inc., Attn: Veterans Memorial Brick Program, PO Box 526, DeForest, Wisconsin 53532.
Skinner Funeral Home of Turtle Lake is serving the family.