Orian D. Freeman
? - 1968

From Loris Centennial 1887 - 1987 Souvenir Book

Orian D. Freeman, owner of Freeman's Insurance Agency, moved with his family to Loris in 1934. At that time he entered the insurance business with Davis 0. Heniford. Their office was in the back of the Loris Drug Store, which was owned by Heniford. A few years later he opened Freeman's Insurance Agency and was in business until he retired July 1, 1949 because of ill health.

In 1950 Freeman with James P. Stevens opened an L.P. Gas Corporation and Gas Appliance Store. They were the first to install gas curers in tobacco barns in the area.

During his years in Loris Freeman was very active in civic affairs. At the start of World War II he began a valuable contribution to many phases of the civilian effort. His service as county chairman of the War Bond Drive earned him the U.S. Treasury Award for Patriotic Service. He was vice chairman of the Horry County Red Cross Chapter and was secretary and treasurer of the Loris branch chapter. At the end of World War II Governor Olin D. Johnston appointed him Horty County Service Officer and he served in that office for five years.

An active and influential member of the Loris Post of The American Legion from 1943, he served as commander for two years. In 1950 he was elected South Carolina State Commander. Olin D. Johnston had a speech that Freeman gave, "The American Legion Has a Job to Do," printed in the appendix of The Congressional Record. A member of the 40 & 8, he also served as Chef de Gare of Waccamaw Voiture 1316.

O.D. Freeman received many honors. Due to his active and constructive interest in his community, county and state he was chosen as "Man of the Week." He was appointed colonel to the Governor by J. Strom Thurmond. As an outstanding citizen of Horty County he was awarded the "Distinguished Service Award."

Freeman, along with Mance Watkins and the Reverend G. Fenton Miller, was instrumental in starting The Loris Sentinel. A barbecue supper was held and a free ticket was given to anyone who subscribed to the newspaper. 1500 subscriptions were needed to start printing The Loris Sentinel in 1952.

Freeman was ordained as an elder in the Presbyterian Church in 1942. He and his family were members of the Loris Presbyterian Church. He was president of The Men of the Church of Pee Dee Presbytery in 1961-1962, and was secretary-treasurer of The Men of the Church of the South Carolina Synod in 1963.

When World War I was declared, he was a member of the National Guard at Oxford, NC, and was called into active service in 1916. Sgt. Freeman was sent overseas in 1918 and participated in breaking the Hindenberg Line. A severe wound received during that action cost him his right arm.

He married Ruth Williams of Sparks, Georgia, in 1919, and they had two daughters, Virginia Miller Medlock of Atlanta, GA, and Ann F. Dawes of Loris. Freeman died in 1968. Mrs. Freeman died in 1984.

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