Amoret Gray Cowan Barbee
Amoret Gray Cowan Barbee, 86, died peacefully at the home of her daughter and son-in-law in Staunton on Friday, December 16, 2011. Born on Christmas Day in Saint Paul, Minnesota, Amoret spent her childhood in Massachusetts. She was a graduate of Thayer Academy and Hollins University in 1946, with a major in art history. After graduation, she participated in The Experiment in International Living in Mexico. It was there she met her future husband, the artist Robert Barbee.
Bob and Amy spent fifty-three years of marriage in Charlottesville, where Bob taught studio art at the University of Virginia.
Amy was a long-time member of the Second Tuesday Book Club, the Spanish Club, the Orchid Club, and the Happy Hikers. She was a member of St. Paul's Memorial Church, where she served on vestry and completed the Education for Ministry program. A life-long Democrat and an advocate for civil rights, she delighted in the candidacy and election of Barack Obama for President.
Amy loved gardening, books, entertaining, bird watching, and travel. Orchids and rare wildflowers gave her great delight. She and Bob raised many orphaned baby birds; it was not unusual to find Amy working in her kitchen with a fledgling perched on her head.
She was a devoted daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend.
She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Robert Thomas Barbee; and her son, Gray Addison Barbee.
Survivors include daughter, Amoret Barbee Powers and her husband, Michael, of Charlottesville; daughter, Sarah Barbee Day and her husband, Douglas, of Staunton; her grandchildren, Lily Fox-Bruguiere and her husband, Anthony Fox, Kelly Powers, Seth Williams, and his husband, Micheal Schena, Ben Barbee, Megan Barbee Dawson and her husband, William, Cara Barbee, Robert Thomas Day and Emily Day; and two great-granddaughters, Maylea Marie and Piper Gray Dawson. A memorial service will be held in the chapel of St. Paul's Memorial Church in Charlottesville, 1 p.m. Monday, January 2, 2011. Crematory services are provided by Reynolds Hamrick Funeral Homes. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Hollins University, P.O. Box 9629, Roanoke, VA 24020, the Wildlife Center of Virginia P.O. Box 1557, Waynesboro, VA 22980, and the Hospice of the Shenandoah, P.O. Box 215, Fishersville, VA 22939.
This obituary was originally published in the News Virginian.