125 North White Horse Pike, Lindenwold, NJ 08021
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Sunday, September 23, 2018
Danks-Hinski Funeral Home
125 N. White Horse Pike at South Ave.
Lindenwold, New Jersey, United States
Obituary of John Freiermuth
John Michael Robert (Mike) Freiermuth, of Voorhees, NJ, on September 9, 2018. Predeceased by his parents John R. Freiermuth and Mary Jane Freiermuth (nee McClernan), and by his brother Anthony F. Freiermuth. John is survived by his siblings Dorothea (Darcy) Cummings (Henry J.), Mary Jane McLaughlin (The Late Joseph), and Edmond P. Freiermuth. He is also survived by his sister-in-law Kathy Freiermuth ( Anthony) and 15 nieces and nephews.
Mike died peacefully after a five-year battle with Alzheimer ’s disease, surrounded by his loving family.
John was born in Philadelphia on November 17, 1938, at the end of the depression; his family moved to New Jersey several years later. He attended Sacred Heart School in Camden, and Camden Catholic High School. After a year at Drexel University, unable to pay tuition on a part-time bus boy’s pay, he joined the Navy, serving as navigator on flights from an aircraft carrier over the Pacific ocean. While serving in the Navy, he began taking correspondence courses from Santa Monica Community College, earning an AA in Math. After his discharge, he earned a BA in Math and Philosophy from UCLA. Mike enrolled in a PHD program in Philosophy; soon realizing that he didn’t want to teach, he switched to the Graduate Engineering program at UCLA and was awarded an MA in Civil Engineering, beginning a life-long pursuit of knowledge.
He worked for the City of Los Angeles, where he innovated and planned bicycle trails. After working in other US cities on engineering projects, he began working in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Abu Dhabi, planning and supervising road construction. In every country he lived, he developed friends outside the American Compound. He studied the language, culture, history, and religion of Saudi Arabia. While there he began a newsletter, Words of Wisdom (WOW), writing about his ventures into the local markets, festivals, and his experiences in the desert, once meeting a tribe of nomads while riding his bike down an unfinished road. He sent WOW free to anyone who would write him at least one letter per year, amazing his coworkers with the number of letters he received. Writing soon became a passion, and Mike developed a witty, sardonic and keenly observant style. Returning to New Jersey, he became engineer for Gloucester County NJ. Retiring at fifty five, he returned to school and earned a BA and MA in English Literature from the University of North Carolina. The rest of his life he devoted to reading, to learning, and to writing poetry, memoirs and short stories. He became an expert on the writer Charles W. Chesnutt and specialized in 19thCentury African-American and feminist writers. He also began writing, editing and publishing a small literary magazine, Timber Creek Review.
Mike was a generous and supportive son, brother, friend and an entertaining and encouraging Uncle Mike. Always interested in childhood learning, he was also a generous supporter of education, especially the Education/Scholarship Fund of Sacred Heart School in Camden and the Save the Children fund in Thailand, where he often visited the school and the children he sponsored and contributed money for supplies and books.
Calling hours from 12 pm – 1pm. Celebration of his life and sharing, from 1pm to 2pm. Please no flowers, but if you wish, in Mike’s memory, contribute time or supplies to your favorite elementary school. Condolences at www.dankshinskifuneralhome.com .