Howard “Dean” Freije

Howard “Dean” Freije, 79, Grand Forks, ND, died Tuesday, March 17, 2020 in Altru Hospital of Grand Forks.

Dean was born on December 27, 1940 at Lawton, ND, the son of Shabel and Martha (Munyer) Freije. At a young age, he moved with his family to Edmore, ND where he attended school and graduated from high school. He attended the University of North Dakota at Grand Forks. Dean worked on area farms and spent winter months in California working for General Motors. Dean then worked as a heavy equipment operator, helping build missile sites in North Dakota and in the construction of roadways. He worked for 28 years as the Ground Maintenance Chief at the Grand Forks Airport, then worked at Bergstrom Electric and S & S Transport.

Dean’s pride and joy were his grandchildren and he loved attending their hockey games. He enjoyed golf, hunting and curling. Dean was a member of the Grand Forks Masons, Malta Lodge No. 131 and served as Grand Master of North Dakota Masons in 2000. He was also a member of the Grand Forks Kem Shrine.

Dean married Mary A. Hanson on November 12, 1966 at Fairdale, ND. She survives along with his children, Terrance, Warm Springs, Oregon, David (Michele) West Fargo, ND, and Timothy, Bismarck, ND; grandchildren, Kayla Beehler, Jace (Kate) Beehler, Matt (Kaylyn) Beehler, Cooper Freije and Kambelle Freije; great grandchild, Braxton Beehler; sister, Delores McCown, Grand Prairie, TX; sisters-in-law Patricia, Regina, and Gloria.

Dean was preceded in death by his parents, brothers George, Raymond, Alfred, Bud, Shabel Jr, Bob, John, and Arnie, sisters Sadie, Yvonne, Gloria, Devona, and Evelyn; and by a great grandchild, Grace Marie Beehler.

Private family services will be held. A public celebration of life will take place at a later date to be announced. In Lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials be directed to the Altru Cancer Center or American Diabetes Association. Arrangements are with Amundson Funeral Home of Grand Forks.

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