Sandra (Ruhanen) Freeman, 65, formerly of Providence, died unexpectedly at home in Garrison, New York, on February 10, 2011. She is survived by and was the beloved wife of Robert Parke Freeman, her husband of forty-four years. She is also survived by her son and daughter-in-law, Robert Parke Freeman Jr. and Mara (Strasberg) Freeman of Ridgefield, Connecticut and her daughter, Saurin Clifford Freeman of London. England. She was the loving grandmother of Gabriella and Abigail Freeman.
Born in Alexandria, Virginia, Sandy was the daughter of Arthur and the late Pearl (Wright) Ruhanen of Gilroy, California. In addition, Sandy leaves two siblings, Patsy (Patricia) Schrupp of Lafayette, California, and Kimberly Bartlett of Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania, as well as nieces, nephews, and other extended family.
Sandy’s family moved to Northern California almost immediately after she was born and she grew up in Los Altos. She attended San Jose State University and, later, Simmons College.
Sandy and her husband, Rob, moved to Providence in 1969, where the extended Freeman family has lived for six generations. He practiced law for several years with Edwards & Angell, until he left to partner with Royal Little and engage in real estate finance and development.
Sandy raised her children in Rhode Island and was active in the arts: dance, music, and design. She danced with Festival Ballet and was on its board while in Providence. She was also a member of the Handicraft Club and the Junior League of Rhode Island. The Freemans were members of Agawam Hunt while their children were growing up. They spent summers in Rhode Island on the water, sharing their love of sailing, and at their summer home on Poppasquash Point in Bristol. They moved to New York from Providence in 1992, when Rob started an investment (opportunity) fund business for Lazard Fréres.
Sandy and her husband acquired Whippoorwill Farm in Garrison, New York, in 1998 and made it their home. She worked extensively on the restoration of the property and its grounds. In New York, she was a member of the Philipstown Garden Club and served on the board of the Constitution Marsh Audubon Sanctuary.
Sandy Freeman was an authentic beauty and a free spirit. She retained a fresh view of the world and a contagious enthusiasm for life that provided others with laughter and joy. A memorial service will be held on February 26 at 11 a.m. at St. Philip’s in the Highlands (Episcopal) Church in Garrison, New York, followed by a reception at the Freeman home, Whippoorwill Farm, also in Garrison.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Constitution Marsh, P. O. Box 174, Cold Spring, New York 10516.