Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SR0122
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Full Text of SR0122  102nd General Assembly




SR0122LRB102 17260 LAW 22731 r


2    WHEREAS, The members of the Illinois Senate are saddened
3to learn of the death of Mary Ella Works Freiburg, Ph.D., who
4passed away on February 10, 2021; and
5    WHEREAS, Dr. Freiburg was born in Humboldt, Kansas to
6Clark and Leota Works on December 5, 1926; she earned her
7Bachelor of Science in Biology and Chemistry from the College
8of Emporia in Kansas in 1948; she obtained her Master of
9Science in Zoology from the University of Kansas in 1950,
10where she was the only female in her biology class; she married
11Richard Freiburg in Humboldt on November 20, 1950; she
12completed her Ph.D. at the University of Missouri-Columbia in
131971; and
14    WHEREAS, Dr. Freiburg was a scientist, educator, professor
15emerita, and former chair of the Biology Department at
16MacMurray College in Jacksonville; she started her career at
17MacMurray College teaching part-time in 1957 while caring for
18four children and working on her Ph.D.; she taught anatomy and
19physiology, introductory biology, and many other courses; she
20was known by scores of elementary education teachers for her
21"kiddie bio" class, where she taught them how to impart a love
22for biology to young learners; she loved teaching and took
23great pride in the accomplishments of her students, many of



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1whom became doctors, vets, dentists, nurses, and science
2teachers; she and her husband, a fellow professor, were
3lovingly referred to by students as "Ma & Pa Freiburg"; she
4served MacMurray College with distinction for 34 years,
5retiring as professor emerita of biology in 1991; and
6    WHEREAS, Alongside her husband, she enjoyed attending
7homecoming events at MacMurray College to reconnect with
8former students and faculty and traveling; together, they took
925 trips overseas for summer research projects and pleasure,
10with destinations including London, the Netherlands, the
11Galapagos Islands, Australia, Kenya, and Scotland; and
12    WHEREAS, Dr. Freiburg had a number of interests; she loved
13working with gourds and used them to make beautiful artwork,
14and she attended meetings and classes throughout the Midwest
15held by the Illinois Gourd Society; most recently, she enjoyed
16reading books about almost any topic, keeping up with what
17everyone in the family was doing, and talking about movies,
18politics, gourds, her childhood in Kansas, books, and many
19other topics; and
20    WHEREAS, Dr. Freiburg was known as a resilient,
21independent person; she knew how to make others feel
22appreciated and taught with style and passion, wearing pearls
23while conducting dissections; she was an inspiration and will



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1be sorely missed; and
2    WHEREAS, Dr. Freiburg was preceded in death by her husband
3of over 68 years, Richard Freiburg, and her three brothers,
4Bruce Works (Marcia), Paul Works (Barbara), and Clark Works
5Jr.; and
6    WHEREAS, Dr. Freiburg is survived by children, Ann (Gil)
7Opferman, Stuart (Emie) Freiburg, Jeanne Freiburg (Matt
8Bogenschultz), and Jane (Jim) Nickerson; her grandchildren,
9Sara Artega, Nathaniel Opferman, Eli Freiburg, Emily Opferman,
10Mary Ellen Nickerson, Molly Nickerson, Will Bogenschultz, Mary
11Freiburg, and Laura Freiburg; and her great-grandchildren,
12Alex and Isabella Artega; therefore, be it
14ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we mourn the passing of
15Mary Ella Works Freiburg, Ph.D., and extend our sincere
16condolences to her family, friends, and all who knew and loved
17her; and be it further
18    RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be
19presented to the family of Dr. Freiburg as an expression of our
20deepest sympathy.