The Obit For Bobby Freeze

Bobby C. Freeze

Published in The Desert Sun on 7/19/2008

Bobby C. Freeze, 71, of Cincinnati, OH, born in 1937, passed away June 30, 2008. After arriving from Arkansas in the late 1940s, Bobby Freeze attended Indio public schools.

He excelled in youth (and later, in adult) softball, and in the process established lifelong friendships on those dusty, wind-swept fields of the Coachella Valley.

He is remembered as a hard working and generous friend who, with that Arkansas twang and winning smile, was always ready to offer anyone a ride to the Burger Box or the Salton Sea in his '55 Ford.

A gifted athlete, Bobby participated in football and basketball while attending Coachella Valley Union High School. But it was his mastery of baseball that set him apart and gave him the unique identity as the "best...pound for pound" player of his CV generation ("a Bobby Freeze at bat was a line drive waiting to happen"). As a team captain and all-league performer, he helped lead the Chuck Pryor coached teams of the 1950s to three league championships.

Following graduation in 1957, Bobby enrolled at Riverside City College where he was the starting shortstop for two years. He also attended Pepperdine University on scholarship then enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve where he played for the MCRD Baseball team. That experience led to his signing a contract with the Chicago White Sox organization. He played for one year before an arm injury ended his brief professional career. But that did not diminish his affection for the game as he continued to play in city leagues for many more years.

An avid outdoorsman, Bobby settled in Weed, CA, for most of his adult life. He married and had three daughters, Kori, Kristi, and Karol. Bobby raised his family on a small ranch, in a small town, North of Weed, CA. Bobby worked in the lumber industry throughout his adult life ending his career in the mid-1990's at Roseburg Lumber Co. Many will remember Bobby driving that yellow Roseburg truck around town or seeing him heading out to Shasta Lake to go fishing on his boat.

Stricken with Parkinson's Disease, at an early age, Bobby's challenges were great. But given the strong man that he was, he met each challenge and overcame it. In 2000, Bobby moved to Cincinnati, OH, to be closer to his eldest daughter, Kori, as his health challenges escalated.

It is in Cincinnati where he died on June 30, 2008, and is survived by his 3 girls and their spouses, and his 8 grandchildren (Madison, Grant, Ashley, Hannah, Ainsley, Claira, Audrey and Donovan).

He was a strong, quiet, and very private man who was always there for his family and friends. We will miss his smile; we will miss his support. True to his nature, Bobby fought a courageous and gallant battle with Parkinson's. We honor him and pray that he rests in peace.

Services for Bobby will be held on Saturday, July 26, 2008 at 1:00 p.m. at the Winema Cemetery in Weed, CA. Immediately following, his daughters will honor him in a softball game located at the Bel-Air Park in Weed, CA, where family and friends can celebrate Bobby's life. Bring your glove and stories of Bobby.

In lieu of flowers, the family wishes donations to be made to the Davis Phinney Foundation, a non-profit organization whose mission it is to improve the lives of people living with Parkinson's disease as well as fund innovative research to prevent and cure the crippling disease.