Freeman honored for musical leadership


Edward Freeman

By Kevin White

Bandmaster Edward Freeman was recognized at this year’s Commissioning for his 40 years of leadership of the Santa Ana/Tustin Ranch (Calif.) Band. Commissioner James Knaggs presented him with a commemorative conductor’s baton.

Freeman was honored earlier at a Musician’s Luncheon at the Tustin Ranch Corps, a celebration of over 100 years of combined service from three individuals: Freeman; Roberta Ames, retired songster, who served 59 years with the Inglewood, Santa Ana and Tustin Ranch brigades; and retired Songster Leader Bob Anthony, who led the Tustin Ranch Songsters for five years.

Special guests included Al and Christine Stickland, who surprised Freeman with a musical presentation. David Dunford and Sarah Koo Freeman also performed musical selections that were favorites of Freeman. Former corps officers Commissioners Joe and Doris Noland and Majors Lee and Michele Lescano also attended, along with Southern California Divisional Leaders Lt. Colonels Doug and Colleen Riley.

Freeman received a proclamation from County Supervisor Todd Spitzer (Orange County 3rd District), as well as a book of letters and a special “best of” music CD comprised of various tracks from all of the Santa Ana/Tustin Ranch band recordings, including the band’s first recording in 1976.

Riley spoke words of gratitude for Freeman’s leadership and example over the 40-year span, not only for the music, but also the lives touched.

“Ed, for 40 years you have been impacting lives spiritually,” Riley said. “Forty years of service as a bandmaster—that’s a lot of music, that’s a lot of practice, that’s a wonderful legacy of music ministry. You should be commended for your faithfulness.”

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