Freda Major, formerly of Sackets Harbor

LOWVILLE, NY —  Freda Major was a resident at Lewis County General Hospital Nursing Care Facility in Lowville, NY, for approximately two and a half years.  She died primarily from old age, on Friday morning, Jan. 10, 2020.

Freda’s only sibling, Twilla B. (June) Parker passed on December 8, 1989.  Twilla was 68 years old.  Surviving Freda are her son Phillip A. Goings (Marion), Constableville, NY, Laurie Jo O’Donnell (James), Huntington, Indiana.  Four grandchildren also survive: Geoffrey T. Goings (Cat), Gresham, Oregon, Jillian L. Goodrich (Scott), Sackets Harbor, NY; Gabriel J. M. Shepherd (Hannah), Syracuse, NY; and Carley Rae Shepherd, Adams Center, NY. There are several surviving nieces and nephews.

Freda Georgina Townsend was born in Enterprise, Ontario, Canada, daughter of Harold and Hazel Townsend, from Sackets Harbor, NY. There she was raised, attended school, and lived most of her life. She graduated Salutatorian of her 1938 Sackets Harbor class, and her class initiated the Alumni Banquette. Freda was active in basketball, tennis, swimming, bowling, cheerleading, glee club, and the school newspaper.  In high school, she met her first husband, Mayne D. (Joe) Goings, whom she married in 1943, while he served in the Navy. Joe passed away Nov. 18, 1975, from a stroke at the age of 55.

On Jan. 21, 1978, Freda married Barry M. Major, also from Sackets, who had retired as Captain in the Merchant Marines. Barry passed on April 27, 1998.

Freda was happily active in many things. She was a member of the United Presbyterian Church in Sackets Harbor, where she served as clerk on the session and belonged to the Women’s Fellowship Circle. She was a member of the Red Hat Society, Wanderlust, and a volunteer for the American Cancer Society. Freda belonged to the National Secretaries Association and was named Watertown’s Secretary of the Year in 1968. Freda was an avid bowler until she was 90-years-old and a golfer into her 80s! She was a member of the 600 Club in bowling; and in 1980, she was the women’s club champion at the Bedford Creek Golf Club.

In addition, Freda was a charter member of the American Legion’s Women’s Auxiliary in the Harold W. Townsend Post 1757 in Sackets Harbor.  Her father was the founder of the post and was honored to have the post named after him.

Freda worked in a variety of places over her many years. Her last employment was Office Manager for the Hudson River-Black River Regulating District, which is under the Conservation Department in NY State. She retired in 1986 after more than 25 years of service.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, at the Johnson Funeral Home in Dexter, NY. Burial will follow in Lakeside Cemetery in Sackets Harbor, NY.

In lieu of flowers, any donations may be sent to the United Presbyterian Church of Sackets Harbor, the American Legion of Sackets Harbor, or a charity of choice.

Online condolences may be made at