Alicelee Freeman Ewan closed her life on January 12, 2020 at her home in Boulder, Colorado. Born November 5, 1921 in San Francisco, Alicelee spent her earliest years in Honolulu and Garden City, New York. Alicelee’s parents divorced in 1929, and Alicelee journeyed through the Panama Canal to San Jose, California with her mother and siblings where she resided with extended family and in an Episcopal orphanage in San Francisco. She graduated with honors from the stage of the San Francisco Opera House in the first class of George Washington High School. She recalled participating in the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge. As a student at San Jose State University during World War II, Alicelee was the first woman Chief Justice of the Student Court and a member of the student teachers’ honor society, Black Masque. Her final degree was a Masters in Education, Counseling & Guidance from Oregon State University in Corvallis, where she was employed as the director of campus Episcopal life.
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Alicelee became a public school teacher and also worked for the Episcopal Church to support herself and her family. She was indeed a teacher all of her life, even in her last days, as she exemplified diligence, warmth and compassion, intellectual curiosity, and a willingness to learn through experience. Having known profound loss at a young age, Alicelee was a person who brought dignity and humility to every situation. She provided solid ground for each person in her life to be authentic.
Alicelee loved the beauty of the earth and hiked up Half Dome in Yosemite on July 4, 1948, with only her husband and one other friend in sight. She taught her children to be proficient out of doors, and the early camping trips led by this then-single mom have created a legacy of continued adventures for her children and grandchildren. In retirement she relished travel to many countries including Greenland, Russia, and Central America. She made dozens of visits to Alaska for family celebrations at all times of the year, where she rode in a dogsled, visited walrus haulouts on Round Island, kayaked to Bristol Bay salmon fishing cabins and in the glacial waters of Southeast Alaska, and became surrogate grandmother to many Alaskan outpost families.
Although fully self-sufficient, Alicelee believed that all lives are enriched by the communities we make. She and her husband Ray were beautiful dancers and taught folk dancing for many years. She volunteered in retirement as a docent for History San José, the Episcopal Church, her tennis and hiking clubs, and at her beloved home for the last ten years of her life, Frasier Meadows Retirement Community.
Alicelee is survived by her children Sara Roberts of Pinole, California (Maria Carlson), Richard Caulfield of Juneau, Alaska (Anne Caulfield), Sharon Caulfield of Boulder, Colorado (Ned Andrews), and Jan Caulfield of Juneau, Alaska (Tom Paul). Her extended family includes Harolyn Caulfield; Helen Ewan Storrey; Pat Ewan; and Debbie, Laura, Patrick and Mary Caulfield. Her cherished grand-children and great-grandchildren are the families of Brian Caulfield, Jason Caulfield, Caitlin Cosmian, Michael Caulfield, Julia Caulfield, D. Graham Andrews, Caroline Andrews, Riley Paul and Sally Paul. She was predeceased by her two beloved husbands, Edward Nelson Caulfield and Raymond Joseph Ewan, as well as her parents Elmer Stone Freeman and Lillian Marshall Freeman Ferris. She will be remembered with love by many friends around the world.
Private services are being held. If you are moved to a contribution, please consider History San José (historysanjose.org) or the Chaplaincy program at Frasier Meadows Retirement Community (frasiermeadows.org).