Gainesville community mourns loss of activist for the homeless population

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB)- The Gainesville community is mourning the loss of a woman who was a longtime activist for the homeless population.

St. Augustine Church members held a funeral mass for Arupa Freeman Wednesday afternoon.

For years, she spent her time at several homeless camps lending a hand.

Freeman started what she called "The Home Van" with her husband in 2002, bringing food and bags of toiletries to the homeless.

"If they were hungry, we fed them if they had a blister, we gave them Band-Aids. Arupa knew them very well because the whole van runs out of Bob and Arupa's house so they would come by at all hours,” Elizabeth McCulloch said.

Arupa Freeman passed away last month after a short illness at 74 years old.

Arupa Freeman's husband and several volunteers plan to keep "The Home Van" running in her memory.