Freda Lou Wilson Mobley was born April 1, 1933, and passed away at Parkway Village on Wednesday, March 2, 2016. Born in Greenbrier, Arkansas, Freda (or Sis, as her family and hometown friends called her) was the daughter of the late Fred and Lois Glenn Wilson and was married to the late Larry E. Mobley for 41 years.
A long-time resident of Little Rock, Freda graduated from Greenbrier High School in 1950 and Hendrix College in 1954. A very gifted and accomplished musician, she participated in many choirs and musical groups and performed solos throughout her life bringing life and joy to so many events with her beautiful soprano voice and amazing piano proficiency. Freda was a lifelong Methodist, beginning with her early years in Greenbrier United Methodist Church where she was a member and participated in many church activities, to being a member of Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church, where she previously sang in the sanctuary choir, and along with her husband, Larry Mobley, served as honorary life members of the Board of Stewards, co-chairs of the Cancer Friends group, members of the Evangelism Commission and Willing Friends. In her later years, the Friday night congregation of Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church held special meaning for her.
After graduating from Hendrix College in 1954, Freda was fortunate to receive a Danforth Graduate Fellowship, an internship in college student Christian work from the Danforth Foundation of St. Louis, and following training, served one year at Oregon State College in this capacity. This experience confirmed her goal to prepare and work with college students as a profession, more specifically Dean of Women, with the dream of returning to Hendrix College in years to come. After her service at Oregon State College, Freda received a two-year Student Dean Assistantship from the Syracuse University College of Education in Syracuse, New York, where she completed graduate work in Student Personnel Administration and served as Head Resident. Upon graduation, she became the Assistant Dean of Women at Bucknell University. All of these experiences and opportunities led Freda to achieving her dream of being named Dean of Women at Hendrix College from 1958 to 1973. Her years serving at Hendrix College were some of her favorite in her life as she immensely enjoyed working with the students, faculty, and staff. During this time, she also served her community by participating in professional and civic organizations, serving as president of the Arkansas Women Deans and Counselors, president of the Conway Orpheus Club, president of the District Music Club, American Association of University Women, and Governor Bumpers Commission on the Status of Women. While living in Little Rock, she especially enjoyed many wonderful years participating in Little Rock Musical Coterie.
Freda loved people and developing relationships with people; and she was always interested in equal opportunities for women, minorities, and physically, visually, and mentally challenged people from all walks of life. Her work in these areas led to being appointed to Governor Bumpers Loaned Executive Task Force to study the mental health facilities in Arkansas and to make changes in the area of personnel. It was through these interests and work in these areas that led to her job as personnel manager for eight years of Levi Strauss’s Panatela Division, and nurse recruiter for fifteen years at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. Recruiting and working with nursing professionals proved to be deeply satisfying and rewarding.
Freda was preceded in death by her husband, Larry E. Mobley; her parents, Fred and Lois Glenn Wilson; her brother, James Robert Wilson; her brother-in-law, David Mahan; and her stepdaughter, JeJo Mobley. She is survived by her brother, Jerry Wilson (Joy) of Conway; her sister, Margaret Mahan of St. Louis (Twin Oaks), Missouri; her sister-in-law, Nila Wilson of Mena; her stepdaughters, Jane Turney (Dr. Howard M. Turney) of Little Rock and Joy Williams (Grady) of Conway; her step grandsons, Bo Turney of Hampden-Sydney, Virginia, Keith Williams (Ashley) of Conway; her step granddaughter, Shannon Williams of Lebanon, Missouri; her step great- grandchildren, Connor and Lindsey Williams of Conway; her special nieces and nephews, LeAnn Fryar (Joey) of Mena; Amy Falleur (Jerry) of Dardanelle; Susan Short (Gary) of Maryville, Tennessee; Jeff Wilson (Laura) of Rogers; Laura Brown (Gene) of Labadie, Missouri; her great-nieces and nephews, Josh Fryar (Nicole) of Spokane Valley, Washington; Matthew Falleur of Dardanelle; Lauren Baxley (Matt) of Benton; Amanda and Allison Short of Nashville, Tennessee; Cheney Wilson of Rogers; her great-great-niece and nephew, Hudson Fryar of Spokane Valley, Washington and Beckett Baxley of Benton.
In addition to her family, Freda leaves behind many friends and colleagues. She valued personal relationships and went out of her way to be friendly, welcoming, generous, helpful, understanding, supportive and encouraging. She was an inspiration to so many people. She will be remembered not only for these personal traits, but also for her beautiful singing voice and accomplished piano playing ability.
The family would like to acknowledge the wonderful care given by the staff at Parkway Village Health Care Center, Baptist Health Hospice, and Happy Helpers.
A celebration service will be held on Friday, April 1, 2016, at 11:00 a.m., in the sanctuary of Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church with a reception immediately following in the Gathering Hall.
Memorials may be made to Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church Foundation, 4823 Woodlawn Drive, Little Rock, Arkansas, 72205, or Greenbrier United Methodist Church, 2 Tyler St., Greenbrier, Arkansas 72058.
Arrangements by Little Rock Funeral Home, 8801 Knoedl Ct., (501)224-2200.
Freda’s online guestbook may be signed at www.littlerockfuneralhome.com.