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Sheldon Freedman

May 06, 1936 - July 23, 2021


Obituary For Sheldon Freedman

Sheldon Freedman, 85, of Lynn, passed away Friday, July 23rd at the New England Home for the Deaf, following a brief illness. He was the beloved husband of Janice (Kennedy) Freedman.
Sheldon was born in Chelsea, on May 6th, 1936, son of the late Barnett and Lily (Chipman) Freedman. He was raised and educated in Chelsea, attended the Horace Mann School for the Deaf in Roxbury, and went onto Chelsea High, where he would become the first deaf student to graduate a public High School in Massachusetts. He went onto attend Gallaudet University in Washington D.C.
Prior to his retirement, he worked as an offset pressman for over 40 years. After his retirement, he went on to work with people with special needs. He was an avid sports fan, especially of the Boston Celtics. He was also an accomplished athlete in track and field, having never lost a race running the 440 in his three-year career at Chelsea High. He then went on to compete in the Deaf Olympics in Milan, Italy, 1957, bringing home one Gold, one Silver, and one Bronze medal. In celebration of his accomplishments, his story was read into the Congressional Record by Congressman Lane of Chelsea.
Sheldon, born deaf, was very active in the deaf community. He organized many social and sporting events and served as the president of many organizations. His competitive nature in sports pushed him to insist on his right to serve on a jury in 1978, At which time he was credited as the first deaf juror in the United States. He always helped wherever he could, teaching people how to communicate through sign language, even teaching them profanities. At parties he could always be seen with the children, teaching them sign language or telling them jokes.
Some of his other interest included his love for animals, bowling, camping, snowmobiling, going to the beach, or just going out for a drive. He will always be remembered for the joy he brought people, his humor, and most importantly his love and dedication to his family, friends, and anyone he came in contact with.
Sheldon is survived by his loving wife Janice, by his three children, Scott, Debbie, and Brian; 3 grandchildren, and 1 great-granddaughter; his brother and sister-in-law, David and Muriel Freedman of CA; many nieces, nephews, brother-in-law’s and sister-in-law’s and mother-in-law, Rita Kennedy; and many friends. He was predeceased by his first wife, Beverly (Goulden) Freedman.
Visiting hours will be held on Thursday July 29th from 3-8 P.M. at the Conway, Cahill-Brodeur Funeral Home, 82 Lynn St., Peabody. His funeral service will be held privately. Memorial Contributions may be made in his memory to the New England Home for the Deaf, Development Office, 154-160 Water St. Danvers, MA 01923 or visit http://nehd.org/giving





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  • We were so sadden to hear of Sheldon's death, our thoughts and prayers are with the Freedman family and especially Brian who we considered an honorary member of our family. Andy & Connie Madura

  • May he Rest In Everlasting peace - wonderful memories growing up across the street , on a trip to Nova Scotia ,Sheldon (Mr.Freedman to me ) driving up in the family car he took his hands off the wheel put them in the air , and look no hands .thought it was magical, I have always drive with my knee on the wheel to this day ! (Not recommend 😊 ) , and fun times on the Arctic Cats , will always remember him ❤️ -Blessing to all the family ! Love & Peace Paul,Josie ,Emily & John

  • My husband and I are miss u and u are so funny and very kinds we play for ur family hug hug

  • Mr Freedmen was wonderful Man.Always Happy extremely athletic, Him joining us before a baseball game showing us His speed,He was the fastest person I've ever seen. Funny ,He told us that He got pulled over by a cop,The policeman said "I've been trying to pull You over why didn't You pull over what are You deaf? " He said Yes I am deaf .He was humble and competitive at the same time.He willie Dearly Missed

  • I have not seen Sheldon in perhaps 40years but I remember as young child and man he was bigger then life . always a great smile ,always beaming with joy . It would be exciting when he would come to visit our family . A truly wonderful Man

  • Janice, Scott, Debbie, and Brian, you are all in my thoughts and prayers as I just heard of the passing of Sheldon (Shelly). Such a great man, he was always like a second Dad to me growing up. I know he is sorely missed by many both in and out of the deaf community. Such a selfless man who did for many with his humor, kind words, and so much laughter as I recall the many memories. Know that he is up with the Angels spreading joy and laughter again. So sorry for this difficult loss. Love to all, Andrea Kass

  • So sorry for the loss of this wonderful loving beautiful soul. Sheldon was an awesome man and will be missed by all who knew him. I had the privilege of really getting to know him when he and Janice welcomed me into their home when I needed a place to stay. Love you Sheldon 🤟🏻

  • Thinking of you and wishing you moments of peace and comfort Glen Morrison

  • I'm sorry for loss Shelly . Prayer for Janice and Kids too Sending hug 😇🤟❤️

  • Remembering Sheldon and Bev and their many visits to Nova Scotia and teaching me as a small child to accept people as they are despite their differences...Sheldon thought me many signs as well and as I grew and had a son who was born deaf blind was much easier for me to accept because I had such great experiences with Sheldon,Bev and another cousin who was also deaf...it was a blessing for sure ....you have earned your wings Sheldon...now Rest In Peace...love and condolences to family and friends...Much love Cynthia GOULDEN

  • Hi.. sorry for ur loss.. he's very great guy, great sense of humor. Will miss that.. 🤟

  • I will miss Sheldon as my brother in law. He was always funny. Muriel

  • I will always miss Sheldon as my brother in law. He was always funny.

  • I sill miss him as my big brother in law. He was always funny.

  • Shelly was a wonderful big brother to me all my life. I missed him so much. A. David Freedman

  • I just may have learned a few of those profanities from Uncle Shelly... what a wonderful tribute to an amazing man! I love you all! -Lauren

  • Janice & Brian, I'm so sorry for your loss. You're in my heart and mind during this difficult time

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