July 30, 2014
To “Barby” :…and to All of your Loving Family and Friends:
My name is Kay Kobbe, and I was fortunate to be Barb's “roomie” at Mount Union College for our first two years. Since graduation, I have lived and taught both in Florida and New York where I currently live. Barb and I have been in touch at least once a year since graduation and I was grateful to visit her for a day last summer, at which time we shared our lives from our 20's through 60 plus. What precious time spent.
The historic “stewardess years” were just like the movies of old and Barb was there!
The photos of her lined up with the rest of the group, are priceless and very beautiful of her. High cheek bones, lovely smile, and blonde hair gave her the stewardess look, with an extra and very typical bit of flying spirit in her eyes!
All I knew about Barb in college brought a smile and humor to our shared memories of that time. Barb was a pip…She loved to issue pranks like placing a wooden carved clown on the toilets of the dorm restrooms, cracking quick-witted quips about life, and simply laughing with deep joy at situations that could make others hesitate.
I was completely irritated and amazed that Barb would often pull all- nighters at her desk before a major test and always…get that A! That's all she needed for her level of intelligence, amazing memory and ability to integrate information, no matter the subject!
When Barb met “Mood” she went at it as if he were the test. I don't know about all-nighters, but I do know that she relished and loved that man from the start! Barb had no doubts, and this devotion continued for Mike and her children and grandchildren throughout her life. I know from her letters and from her family ethic, that this was by far, the most important part of her life's journey. In addition, her love of books, children, and reading poured fluidly into her bookstore, I am certain. The many ideas that emerged for the benefit of others, gave way to new energy and the desire to act.
As someone who loves her, I am grateful that her life was so full of happiness and life lived.
The real gift to me, was Barb's open heart and compassion on the day we most recently met. In the face of a horrendous disease and random snag within a giving life that seems unfairly cut short, Barb emitted peace and an open heart. She gave me the lesson of living the moments through her expression and experience. She gave me the advise to take advantage of life's goodness, in spite of its difficulties. Barb exuded gratefulness of each day, of each recognition of life's beauty surrounding her beautifully and thoughtfully constructed home. As she was honoring this journey with Grace, she inspired us all.
My clear intention was to give her something that day…something of my Heart to take with her; something to bolster her strength. What I remember was that she gave me hers and more.
Thank you, Barby. Your contributions here were meaningful in such a variety of ways. You lived life lovingly and givingly , full of your unique energy and a true zest for life…. something that is a lesson for us all. Thank you for touching our lives.
Your friend and room-mate,