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Kathleen Hughes Barker

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Kathleen Hughes Barker Obituary
Kathleen Hughes Barker

Kathleen Hughes Barker, born February 6, 1935, passed away February 17, 2012 at Torrance Memorial Hospital after a long and courageous fight with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, she graduated from Shaker Heights High School and attended the University of Michigan. In 1956 she married Frederick Barker who was in the automobile business in Cleveland. Together with their first son they moved to Shelby, Ohio in 1957 and opened a successful Chevrolet dealership. Working together with Fred, Kathy ran the office and managed the money while he sold the cars. Looking for new opportunities, in 1971 Fred and Kathy sold the dealership in Ohio and moved to Southern California and beautiful Palos Verdes with their five children: Rick, David, Kelly, Bo and Mike. Kathy loved the "Hill" for the rest of her life. While dealing with personal challenges that might have broken a less strong willed person, Kathy worked tirelessly to make a future for her family. She attended law school at night and graduated with honors while working as the full-time office manager at Gunnell Aviation at Santa Monica Airport. She was admitted to the California Bar in 1976 and practiced law in Torrance for an amazing 35 years, until her reluctant retirement in August of 2011. During her years of practice which focused on estate planning and family law, with compassion and professionalism she helped countless people in times of personal difficulty. She was past-president and a member of the board of directors of the South Bay Bar Association. In 2005 she was honored by her peers when she received the "Jeannie" award for distinguished service. She volunteered her time on the Pro Bono Panel, Guardianship Panel, and the Family Law Mediation Panel helping to provide free legal services to those in the community who were in most need. Kathy loved cheesecake (classic New York style only), golf, Sudoku puzzles, reading novels, walks by the cliffs, playing "spit" and traveling with her family that had grown to include twelve grandchildren. She dedicated her life to her family and raised her children to be strong, successful, independent adults who loved and admired her very much. She enjoyed bragging about all of them and telling them what to do; her children loved her for it. Her family legacy is a tribute to her strong will, commitment and perseverance. A memorial service will be held at the Los Verdes Golf Course, 7000 W. Los Verdes Dr., Rancho Palos Verdes, Saturday March 24, 2012, 11:00 a.m. to remember and celebrate Kathy's life. A reception will follow. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions may be made to Pulmonary Education Program, 20929 Hawthorne Blvd., Torrance, CA, www.peppioneers.org, where Kathy was a board member. Please sign the guestbook
at www.dailybreeze.com/obits.
Published in Daily Breeze from Mar. 4 to Mar. 24, 2012
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