Wilfred (Wilf) Michael Freeman was born October 21, 1917 in Vancouver B.C. and died December 23, 2012. He was the son of William George Freeman and Robina Steel (Manson) Freeman and brother to Elizabeth Jane May (Freeman) Ellingsen (born March 13, 1914); his grandparents were Michael and Jane Manson. Wilf grew up on Hernando Island until 1926 when the family moved to Vancouver. One of his first jobs in the early 1930s was in Powell River where, among other things, he was hand digging basements under some of the original Powell River townsite homes.
He gravitated to the logging industry, working for Sigurd Ellingsen and Eric Flescher in Phillips Arm through the late ’30’s and into the 1950’s. He was an excellent worker; strong, resourceful, thoughtful, humorous and thorough, and, as well, he enjoying hunting and fishing.
Wilf and his wife, May (Spence, died 1970) moved down to Smelt Bay on Cortes in the early 1950’s from Phillips Arm. He logged with Bill Mathews between 1954 and 1965 in the Von Donop Creek areas. As well, they both crewed on the seine boat “Courtenay Maid” with Pat Andrews for a few summers.
When the ferry came to Cortes Island, both Wilf and Bill worked as deckhands, always cheerful and busy throughout the trips, often chipping and repainting rust spots on the ship.
Wilf was active in many community affairs over all the years living on Cortes: among them the Ratepayers Association, the 1958 Centennial Committee, the Cortes Grapevine Telephone Assoc. (a local telephone system, 1959 - 1966), Cortes Days summer celebrations, Cortes Island Firefighters Assoc., Cortes Rod and Gun Club.
Wilf and his second wife, Nora, lived on in Smelt Bay until they moved to Willow Point, South of Campbell River, in 2002. There they lived until, on December 23, 2102, he passed away while shoveling snow in their back yard.