Russell T. Freeman
Russell T. "Wicker" Freeman, age 58, passed away suddenly, resident of Elmhurst, Owner and President of Coyne College, Served on Board of Directors with The Imagine America Foundation, Career Colleges and Universities and the Better Business Bureau of Chicago and Northern Illinois; Russell was actively involved in post-secondary education for over 30 years. His passion was helping others learn a skill and build up their trade. Russell was the beloved husband of Michelle, nee Konrath; devoted father of Christopher and Kyle; loving brother of Poppy (Dan) Bechtold, John Freeman and the late Posie Thompson; cherished son of the late John J. and the late Joan R. Freeman. Visitation Friday, 3:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and Saturday, 8:15 a.m. until time of funeral 9;15 a.m. from Gibbons Funeral Home, 134 South York Road, (½ mile North of Saint Charles Road), Elmhurst. Mass of Christian Burial 10:00 a.m at Visitation Catholic Church. Interment Saint Mary Catholic Cemetery, Evergreen Park. Due to COVID-19 guidelines, please note that the family thanks all attendees in advance for their show of support, however facility capacity is limited and we request all attendees maintain social distancing, wear a mask and be respectful of the time so all have a chance to express their condolences. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association, 7272 Greenville Ave., Dallas, TX 75231 or the Northern Illinois Food Bank, 273 Dearborn Court, Geneva, IL 60134. For funeral information please call 630-832-0018 or www.gibbonsfuneralhome.com

To plant trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published by Chicago Tribune on Apr. 7, 2021.
MEMORIAL EVENTS
Apr
9
Visitation
3:00p.m. - 8:00p.m.
Gibbons Funeral Home
134 South York Road, Elmhurst, IL 60126
Apr
10
Visitation
8:15a.m. - 9:15a.m.
Gibbons Funeral Home
134 South York Road, Elmhurst, IL 60126
Apr
10
Funeral
9:15a.m.
Gibbons Funeral Home
134 South York Road, Elmhurst, IL 60126
Apr
10
Mass of Christian Burial
10:00a.m.
Visitation Catholic Church
Funeral services provided by:
Gibbons Funeral Home
MAKE A DONATION
Please consider a donation as requested by the family.
GUEST BOOK
Add a Message
25 Entries
"The stars are not wanted now; put out everyone, Pack up the moon dismantle the sun. Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood. For nothing now can ever come to any good." -W.H.Auden Thank you for giving me and many others a good life, Wicker.
Cathleen Crawford
April 9, 2021
Wicker has been on the board of directors since I started with Imagine America back some 10 or so years ago. He went out of his way to get to know me when I first joined and has always been a great friend. He will be greatly missed.
Lee Doubleday
April 9, 2021
Jack Takahashi
April 9, 2021
McGraw-Hill Education Team
April 9, 2021
Russell (we called him Rocky) was a great dorm neighbor at IU. He was always friendly and engaged all of us as a group, He worked very hard for what he wanted. Reminded us all about happiness
Jeff Blackford
Classmate
April 8, 2021
Tom & Geralyn (Conway) Donovan
April 8, 2021
Whenever I attended the conference, Wicker was always there with his big smile. I really enjoyed talking with him about our schools and industry. I will miss my friend so much.
Jack Takahashi
April 8, 2021
I grew up in accreditation over the last 25 years. Wicker was my friend from the very start. He was supportive, kind, patient, and a driving force behind ACCSC's push for educational quality. I am thankful we had a chance to connect a few weeks ago. I'll miss my friend tremendously ~Chris
Christopher Lambert (ACCSC)
April 8, 2021
The entire Roth family
April 7, 2021
I will miss my friend Wicker very much. He was a lovely and caring person and he will be ever locked safely in my heart and the hearts of all who knew him. God Bless Wicker and give comfort to his family
Tim McMahon
April 7, 2021
I will miss my friend Wicker very much. He was a lovely, caring, person and he will be ever locked safely in our hearts. May God Bless Him.
Tim McMahon
April 7, 2021
I am so sorry to hear of the passing of a great friend and colleague, Wicker you will be missed my friend.
Michael Reynolds
April 7, 2021
Wicker and I had some great times together. He was a great friend and business associate. We spent hours discussing business and our personal lives. I will miss him. I am sorry for the loss and my heart and prayers go out to his loving wife, children and family.
Gregory Charles Gragg
April 7, 2021
Visited Russell at his then new Coyne location several years ago. He proudly gave me a tour and we talked shop. We connected on a common belief in the mission of schools such as Coyne. He was a natural who 'got it' - and for years demonstrated that to his students. He was a pioneer in the sector and will be missed. You done good Wicker. Thanks for being a class act.
Dave Pauldine
April 7, 2021
I am so sorry to hear of the passing of my friend Wicker. I really enjoyed meeting up with him at conferences, as he always had a smile on his face and a good laugh to share. He will be dearly missed. My condolences to his family...
Nathalie Mateer
Friend
April 7, 2021
On behalf of Mandl College and myself, my sincerest condolences for your loss. We wish your family peace and healing during this most difficult time.
Melvyn Weiner
April 7, 2021
First Institute
April 7, 2021
To the Freeman Family, I have known Wicker for many years, and served along side of him in a number of capacities, including the ACCSC Nominating Committee. Tireless, funny, and so smart, he cared so much for students and how we need to always continue to improve to help them achieve their own success. He will be missed...but watching over all of you. Prayers for Wicker.
Nancy Bradley
April 7, 2021
May your memories of the wonderful times you shared with your loved one comfort you and your family, today and always.
American Heart Association
April 7, 2021
My condolences to the Freeman family. At the beginning of my career, I had the pleasure of meeting Wicker on an accreditation visit. Some twenty years later, I vividly recall his passion and commitment to private, post-secondary education and the students it serves. The world is a better place because of his leadership and life's work.
Michael Zawisky
April 7, 2021
I will miss Wicker. Always enjoyed speaking with him.
Jeff Arthur
April 7, 2021
First American Bank
April 7, 2021
A good friend gone to soon. Thank you for all you have meant to so many.
Darryl Mattox
April 7, 2021
RIP Gods speed my friend. Prayers for your family. May God bring them peace and safety.
Paul Rontos
April 6, 2021
Offering our deepest condolences during this difficult time.
The Gibbons Family
April 7, 2021