On Sunday, February 9, 2020, Rev. Lloyd Edward Free, loving husband and the father of four children, passed away at the age of 92.
Lloyd was born on March 25, 1927 near the rural communities of Pea Ridge and Mud Creek, south of Cornelia, Georgia to Martin and Vadie Woodall Free. He joined the army in WWII at age sixteen, and began basic training at age seventeen, eventually serving at a logistics unit located near West Point in New York. All of his brothers served in WWII. When his father became gravely ill, Lloyd returned home to run the family farm. He later received his undergraduate degree from Piedmont College in 1950, and numerous graduate degrees from the University of Georgia in Athens. He was an educator in Northeast Georgia for 42 years. In his later career he worked with the State Board of Education for 11 years and taught developmental studies at Lanier Tech. He was a bivocational Baptist minister. He served as pastor of several local churches including: his home church Pleasant Hill, Broad River, Lula Baptist Church, Dewberry One, Belton Baptist, Enon, White Creek Baptist, Crossroads Baptist Church and Double Springs. On July 1, 1950, he married Clarice Cantrell, daughter of Jesse and Mae Cantrell. He and Clarice had three daughters, Mary Helen, JoAnne, and Carolyn, and one son David who passed away at age four after an extended illness.
Lloyd had a life-long love for learning, for Bible study, vegetable gardening, his friends, neighbors, and family. In addition to being known in schools and churches in the area, he was known for his quiet, compassionate, and generous spirit.
Lloyd was preceded in death by his beloved father, mother, and all his brothers and sisters, Earl, Everett, Dewey Lee, Hazel Free Crain, Nezzie Free Strange and Eunice Free Hulsey, and his sisters-in-law, Bernice Cantrell, Shirley Cantrell Free, Bonnie Harper Free, Evelyn Hulsey Free, and brothers-in-law, V.D. Crain, Clay Strange, Owen Cantrell and Telford Hulsey. He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Clarice, his three daughters, and sons-in-law, Dale Marsh, John Carter, and Phillip Bowen; granddaughter, Rebecca Mae Bowen; several nieces and nephews; sister-in-law, Betty Allison Cantrell Skinner; brother-in-law, Elwood Free.
Funeral services are scheduled for 11 am, Thursday, February 13, 2020 at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church with Rev. Jim Welborn, Rev. Guy Lee and Rev. Martha Jane Lomax officiating. Interment will follow in the church cemetery.
The family will receive friends from 4-8 pm on Wednesday at the funeral home and he will lie in state beginning at 10:30 am on Thursday at the church.
Flowers are accepted or donations may be made to Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, Building Fund or to the Georgia Baptist Childrens Home, 505 Water Works Rd., Palmetto, GA 30268.
An online guest register is available and may be viewed at www.mcgaheegriffinandstewart.com.
MCGAHEE-GRIFFIN & STEWART FUNERAL HOME OF CORNELIA, GEORGIA (706/778-8668) IS IN CHARGE OF ARRANGEMENTS.