Gail Hamilton Barber

NEW BERN - Gail Hamilton Barber, beloved mother, grandmother and neighbor, 77, awakened Friday morning, February 7, 2014 in the arms of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Born July 30, 1936 to the late Reuben M. Hamilton of Atlantic, NC and Nellie G. Hamilton of Craven County, she lived all but two years of her life in New Bern.

She began attending Tabernacle Baptist Church as a child and at the age of 15 gave her heart and life to the Lord. She has since loved and served Him. She served in Tabernacle over the years as Sunday school and Training Union Teacher, nursery worker, choir member for 35+ years, and she headed the "hug" ministry.

Gail was a cheerleader her junior year of high school and graduated in 1954 with plans to attend nursing school, but God had other plans for her. In January of 1955 a young marine, William R. "Dick" Barber, stationed at Cherry Point saw her picture in a friend's yearbook and said, "I want to meet that girl." They met and 8 days later he proposed to her. She prayerfully considered the proposal over the next 2 weeks and on April 3, 1955 they were married and so the love story began. They were happily married for over 55 years when the Lord called Dick home.

After graduation from high school she worked as a receptionist/office assistant for Dr. Roy Miller, dentist and Dr. Davis, pediatrician. She was a receptionist at New Bern Urology Clinic for 13 years. She was then self-employed for 21 years with her home business "Love and Care Child Care."

Her retirement years have been spent loving and caring for her family and providing visits, hugs and meals for her neighbors. She loved working in her yard and spending time with her German Shepherd, Abby.

Gail is survived by her son, Steven Barber; daughter, Gretchen Heckman; grandchildren, Reba, Adam and Ethan Heckman, all of New Bern; brother, Enrico Hamilton of Rockingham, NC and brother, David Hamilton of Leland, NC.

A memorial service will be held 3 p.m., Sunday, February 16, 2014, at Tabernacle Baptist Church in New Bern with the Reverend John B. Thompson, Dr. Jack Hinton and Dr. Scott Gleason officiating.

The family will receive friends at the church immediately following the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the STAFF House, PO Box 12661, New Bern, NC 28562, Eastern Pregnancy Information Center (EPIC), 2602 Neuse Blvd, New Bern, NC 28563 or to Religious Community Services, 99 George St., New Bern, NC 28560.

Online condolences to the family may be made at

Arrangements are by Bryant Funeral Home & Crematory, Alliance.

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Published in Sun Journal from Feb. 13 to Feb. 16, 2014