University Letter

UND's faculty and staff newsletter

Remembering Reine Victoria Freeman

Reine Victoria Freeman, retired UND Registrar’s Office staff member, passed away on Sunday, May 7, at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, N.D., following a brief battle with cancer.

She was born to Ernest Desautels and Rosalia (Fink) Desautels on Oct. 9, 1933, in Michigan, N.D. She was raised as one of 11 siblings.

Reine was united in marriage to Philip George Freeman on Sept. 8, 1953, after the two met as students at the University of North Dakota. Upon Philip’s graduation, the couple briefly lived in Illinois for Philip’s work. Missing their beloved North Dakota, the young family moved back to Grand Forks where they remained and raised their 10 children.

Reine, a loving wife and caring mother, spent most of her adult years as a housewife. Later as an empty nester, she went to work at the University of North Dakota in the Registrar’s Office, where she became known as the go to lady for scheduling professors in the right classrooms and buildings each semester. She later retired, enjoying her last years with her husband, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

Reine was an active member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church. For years, she and her friend Peggy Pientock sang duets at funerals at St. Mary’s, bringing solace to many. She was a long-term member of St. Mary’s Altar Society serving as Treasurer for several years. Reine was a volunteer on the first Board of Directors for the Listen Center and was part of the team that got the first Listen Center location off the ground. She was a supporter of St. Mary’s School and Catholic Education.

Reine is survived by her loving husband of 69 years, Philip Freeman. She is also survived by 8 of her 10 children: Jane Freeman, Grand Forks, N.D.; Mark (Teri) Freeman, Bismarck, N.D.; Jude Freeman, Grand Forks, N.D.; Joseph (Cathy) Freeman, Grand Forks, N.D.; Andrew (Peggy) Freeman, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Paul Freeman, Grand Forks, N.D.; Martin (Mary) Freeman, Apache Junction, Ariz.; Mary (Philip) Brady, Lewisville, N.C.; 25 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.

Reine was preceded in death by her parents, a son, Gregory (Marilyn) Freeman, a daughter, Kathleen (David) Moum, a grandson, Joseph Freeman, Jr., and granddaughter-in-law, Jenny Tone-Pah-Hote.

Mass of Christian Burial: 11 a.m. Saturday, May 13, 2023, in St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Grand Forks, N.D.

Visitation: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday with a 6:45 p.m. Rosary Service and 7 p.m. Vigil Service in the Historic Norman Funeral Home Chapel. Visitation will continue for one hour prior to the liturgy in the church on Saturday.

The online memorial registry may be signed at

(The Historic Norman Funeral Home, Grand Forks, N.D.)