Dental 01

Dr. David Hales Freshwater

August 8, 1935 ~ January 12, 2021 (age 85)


Dr. David Hales Freshwater, 85, of Morehead City, passed away on Tuesday, January 12, 2021, at Carteret Health Care, surrounded by his loving family.

Due to Co-vid 19 concerns, an outdoor funeral service will take place at 11 a.m., Saturday, January 23, 2021, at Gethsemane Memorial Park, officiated by Rev. Powell Osteen.  A private interment will take place at Bayview Cemetery in Morehead City. Friends are welcome to attend the funeral service. However, in order to provide social distancing, we ask friends to remain in their cars, the service will be broadcast through a sound system. For those unable to attend, the family invites you to view the webcasting of the service through his obituary page on Munden Funeral Home’s website. Friends are also encouraged to leave words of comfort to the family through the website.      (See link below for the Service Bulletin including the Order of Service.)

David was born on August 8, 1935, in Morehead City, North Carolina, to the late David Willis Freshwater and Lunette Meadows Freshwater. He was taught Christian values and the Golden Rule by his parents, and he belonged to, and attended, First United Methodist Church his entire life. 

After graduating from Morehead City High School, he completed a degree in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and then graduated from the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry with his degree in Dental Surgery. David’s goal was to return to his hometown of Morehead City and practice dentistry. He practiced in an era in which he sometimes traded dental work for oysters and collards as well as made house calls. He loved his work and helped where he could.

A person of great energy and enthusiasm, he had an interest in his community. He was active in many local causes and endeavors. He was a member of the Carteret County Board of Education, the Health Systems Administration, Carteret County Board of Health, Farmers Home Administration Executive Committee, and the North Carolina Port Authority.

Professionally, he was awarded the Order of the Longleaf Pine for his work in children’s dentistry. He was Secretary, then President of the North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners, and Secretary, then President of the North Carolina Dental Society. He was also a member of the International College of Dentists and the Academy of General Dentists.

Dentistry was not his only interest; he was also a businessman. He was part owner in White Oak Properties in Swansboro, Crystal Oaks properties in Morehead City, and Tidewater Dental Partnership in Washington, NC.

David is survived by a loving and beloved family: his  wife of forty years, Rita Harris Freshwater; children: Beth Freshwater-Smith (Richard) of Wilson; Sara Freshwater Duncan of Wilmington; David Wilson Freshwater (Kim) of Wilmington; Dave T. Willis II (Hope) of Morehead City; grandchildren: Ali Duncan Grimes (Thomas) of  Greenville;  Lauren Elizabeth Duncan of Los Angeles, California; Eliza Darden Smith and Richard Thorp Smith IV of Wilson; Morgan C. Willis and Michael Locklear (Caroline) and great-grandson; Davis Locklear all of Morehead City.

David was always happiest on his boats.  He loved all kinds of fishing and picnicking with his family at Cape Lookout in the summer.  He was an avid tennis player and played in various leagues and tournaments in eastern North Carolina for many years.  He volunteered at the Morehead City Port, and Fort Macon State Park.  He provided dental services in missions in South America in his later years.

As an expression of sympathy, flowers are welcome or memorial contributions, in memory of Dr. David Freshwater, may be made to First United Methodist, 900 Arendell St., Morehead City, NC 28557.

Family and friends are welcome to submit online condolences at 

Arrangements by Munden Funeral Home & Crematory in Morehead City, NC.  

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Dr. David Hales Freshwater, please visit our floral store.

 Service Program


Funeral Service
January 23, 2021

11:00 AM
Gethsemane Memorial Park
700 Highway 24
Newport, NC 28570

Video is available for this event

Private Interment

Bayview Cemetery, MHC
North 20th Street
Morehead City, NC 28557


First United Methodist, Morehead City
900 Arendell St., Morehead City NC 28557
Tel: 1-252-726-7102

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