BiographyFreeman, Helen (Feinberg, Frieman); b. March 19, 1914, NYC; Jewish; AMB; Nurse; Received Passport# 3610016 on January 12, 1937 which listed her address as 597 Ocean Parkway, Brooklyn, New York; 25 years old; Sailed January 16, 1937 aboard the Paris; Part of the AMB Group #1; Served in the Medical Service as an Operating Room Nurse; Wounded during a hospital bombing in March 1938; Returned to the US on June 6, 1938 aboard the Ile de France; d. February 22, 1999, Newport Beach, Orange County (Los Angeles), California, buried in a Mausoleum, Chapel of the Roses Cemetery, Atascadero, San Luis Obispo County, California.
Sources: Sail; Scope of Soviet Activity; Repatriation List (5/30/1938, ll. 194); Find-a-Grave# 37599609; (obituary) Len Levenson, “Helen Freeman Fineberg,” The Volunteer, Volume 21, No. 2, Spring 1999, p. 20; (obituary) Myrna Oliver, "Helen Feinberg, 84, Nurse, Social Activist," Los Angeles Times, February 24, 1999; L-W Tree Ancestry. [Need to get the photo of her post Spain] Code A
Obituary: “Helen Freeman Fineberg” Helen, a nurse trained at Brooklyn Jewish Hospital, volunteered for Spain at age 22. She was in the first American Medical team that reached Spain in January 1937. She was a frontline nurse through the battles of Jarama, Belchite and Gandesa in the late winter and spring of 1937- 38. At Hijar in March 1938 when the base hospital was heavily bombed, Helen received a fractured skull and severe arm wound. To assure her recovery she was invalided home two months later. Helen’s SCW injuries prevented her from serving as a military nurse in World War II. She managed nevertheless to spend the war years in Ecuador after its border war with Peru had ended. Working for the U.S. Government Emergency Rehabilitation in devastated mountain and jungle villages, she organized clinics and trained nurses. When WWII ended, Helen spent time in Europe with the American Joint Distribution Committee and later served as a public health nurse in Oregon. In 1952, while on the staff as a public health nurse at the Union Health Care Center of the ILGWU in New York City, Helen married Charles Fineberg, an organizer and public health administrator. Twenty years later, they moved to Orange County, California, where they continued their public service careers. Helen’s work focused on the children and families of migrant and immigrant workers. In 1985, the Newport Mesa Unified School District honored Helen and Charles by naming a new elementary school the Costa Mesa Fineberg. Helen Freeman Fineberg headed the Los Angeles VALB post from 1988 until it was disbanded in 1998. She died in Newport Beach, California, on February 22, 1999. - Len Levenson
Photograph: Postcard of the AMB in Barcelona on their arrival, Helen Freeman is the nurse facing the camera in front, surrounded by six other nurses (Rose Freed, Ray Harris, Ave Bruzzechini, Helen Freeman, Frederika Martin, Fanny Golub(?) and far right, Lini Fuhr). Frederika Martin photo collection ALBA 1:1:42:1, Tamiment Library, NYU