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Virginia Monsul-Barnes

Virginia Monsul-Barnes Obituary
Virginia Monsul-Barnes

AGE: 54 • Sea Girt

Surrounded by her three sons and husband, Dr. Virginia Monsul-Barnes of Sea Girt, a practicing dentist, and a former director of clinical research at Colgate Palmolive Company died early Saturday morning at Jersey Shore Medical Center from complications related to her four -year struggle with brain cancer. She was 54.

Born and raised in Somerville as an only child to a local family physician and a practicing nurse Dr. Barnes inherited from her parents a piercing intellect, steely fortitude and dazzling good looks neatly tucked into a five foot four inch frame. After graduating from Somerville High School she earned Bachelor of Science Degrees in Biology and Chemistry from the University of Delaware in 1984. In 1989 she graduated from Georgetown University School of Medicine earning a Doctoral Degree in Dental Surgery.

In 1990 she opened a dental office in Hillsborough where she practiced family dentistry for about nine years before selling the business. In 2000 at the invitation of VP James Norfleet she joined Colgate Palmolive as a clinical research manager and became associate director of research in 2010. While there she came under the tutelage of Drs. Bill Devizio, Tao Xu, Susan Herles and Mack Morrison. These scientists-among the most respected and accomplished in the field of periodontal care- breathed in her an animated vigor toward finding cures for periodontal disease thought to affect everything from diabetes and heart disease to low birth weight babies.

Those relationships culminated in the conferring of US Patents to her and her Colgate colleagues for the development of oral composition products aimed at inhibiting proteins that degrade oral tissue and bone. Under the direction of these and other scientists she conducted and supervised the company's world-wide clinical research programs in periodontal disease, overseeing a network that stretches from Asia to South America. In 2006 Dr. Barnes earned a Masters of Science Degree in Biochemistry from Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital.

For the past three years while Dr. Barnes was confined at home to a hospital bed she was comforted by her wonderful care givers particularly Kelly Calandra, Judi Terri and Cindy Vanderbeck, by her childhood friends Jennifer Kushinka, Ruth Rapkin, Alice Cotton and by her beloved Georgetown Girls particularly Dr. Karen Desimone and Dr. Brenda Jenkins. She especially loved her adopted sisters Denise and Mary McEvoy and their father Larry McEvoy. She loved and was loved by her mother in law Barbara Barnes of Edison.

Dr. Barnes was active in community and civic affairs. Though a lifelong Republican she served on the Executive Council of the Hunterdon County Democratic Party. She was a volunteer member of the Clinton Township Board of Adjustment. She served as treasurer to her husband's NJ Assembly candidacy. She was a volunteer high school biology and math tutor. She is also remembered as a pioneer and fearsome advocate in identifying and addressing auditory processing disorders in children.

Dr Barnes was a licensed pilot, scuba diver instructor, competitive skier and tennis player. In May 2012 she completed her first half marathon in Buffalo, NY with her oldest son Jack. She is predeceased by her parents Dr. Robert Monsul and Loretta Joan DeMars and by her favorite Aunt Dee Dee Monsul. She is survived by her Uncle John Monsul of Alexandria Virginia, her Uncle Jim of Columbus, Ohio, her husband John Patrick Barnes and her three college aged sons Jack, Michael and James of Sea Girt whom she adored.

The family thanks Nicholas and Cathy Sewitch of Monroe, Eileen Malloy of New York City and the faith community of St. Marks for their devotion, particularly Msgr. Sean Flynn. The family also extends its thanks to the Sea Girt Police Department and local EMT units for the many times they responded to her medical challenges. Dr. Barnes was blessed to have three boys who sacrificed their teenage years in the service of their mother's care. Despite the ravages of cancer these years were the happiest of her life.

Visitation will be on Thursday from 4 pm to 8 pm at the Orender Family Home for Funerals 2643 Old Bridge Road in Manasquan. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday at 9:30 am at St. Mark's Catholic Church 215 Crescent Pkwy, Sea Girt. Entombment will follow at St. Anne's Cemetery in Wall. In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorial donations be made to the 's , 132 W. 32nd Street, New York, NY 10001.
Published in Asbury Park Press on Mar. 21, 2017
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