Freeman, William N.
Arizona radio pioneer "Bill" Freeman, 88, passed away on March 27, 2014, while under the gentle and loving care of Tramonto Assisted Living and Sage Hospice. Bill was born in Battle Creek, Michigan to Norman J. Freeman and Ida M. Freeman (Brown). He attended Battle Creek Central High School and later graduated with honors from the NBC announcing school at Northwestern University. Bill then went to work for WOOD Radio in Grand Rapids, MI. On February 14, 1946, he married his wife of 65 years, Anne Marie (Naimo) Freeman. In 1947, Bill and Anne moved to Phoenix. Bill went to work for KARV in 1946 and KRUX in 1947. In 1950, he joined Gene Autry at KOOL radio. Bill's passion for hobbies and toy trains led him to open Freeman's Hobby Haven in 1952 while still working in radio. Bill purchased KUEQ AM 740 in 1962 and created a beautiful music format that was later shared by its sister station, KMEO 96.9 FM, which Bill also founded. Other stations Bill announced at included: KBUZ, KHEP, KONI, KTAR, KRIZ and KPAZ TV. In addition to his radio work, Bill performed with the Phoenix Little Theatre and the Sombrero Theatre. He broadcasted both the Phoenix and Scottsdale Symphonies. From 1979 through 1988, Bill provided marketing services to Turf Paradise and in the 1990s booked music events for El Gran Mercado. Bill is survived, loved and missed by his sons Norman W. Freeman and William M. Freeman. Services will be held at 1:00pm Thursday, April 3, 2014, at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, 100 W. Roosevelt, Phoenix. Burial to follow at Greenwood Memory Lawn Cemetery, 2300 W. Van Buren, Phoenix. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Trinity Episcopal Cathedral. Please visit www.hansenmortuary.com for online condolences.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Apr. 1, 2014