Keeney & Basford P.A. Funeral Home
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Frederick, MD 21701
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Donald Charles Barnes Sr.

Mr. Donald Charles Barnes Sr., 68, of New Market, former Frederick County sheriff and renowned musician, died suddenly Tuesday, May 25, 2010. He collapsed at home and was taken to Frederick Memorial Hospital. He was the loving and devoted husband of Debbie Williams Barnes.

Born Sept. 4, 1941, in Cumberland, he was a son of the late Top Ellis and Pearl B. Hansrode Barnes Sr.

Mr. Barnes was dedicated and committed to public service for most of his professional life and began his career with the Maryland State Police in 1963, where he remained until 1969, when he went to work with the Maryland State Fire Marshal's Office. He continued with the fire marshal's office until he was elected to the position of sheriff of Frederick County in 1974.

Sheriff Barnes, elected to the office as the youngest sheriff in Frederick County history, went on to serve two terms, leaving office in 1982. Sheriff Barnes was the 1978 Sheriff of the Year and was active with the Maryland State Sheriff's Association and was instrumental in helping start the Maryland Sheriff's Youth Ranch.

During his tenure as sheriff, guidelines and policies were put into place for the education and accreditation of departmental staff and the patrol section was established and created.

In more recent years, he was a real estate agent with Long & Foster Realtors.

Mr. Barnes was a member of the Thurmont Church of the Brethren and did extensive volunteer work with his wife in the Patty Pollatos Fund activities and fundraising. He was an avid golfer and actively participated with the Hackers of the VFW Club.

In addition to his dedication to public service, he was an accomplished musician and for many years entertained at local events and carnivals as Don Barnes and The Countrymen Show. He was a Nashville recording artist and opened for many famous country music legends over the years and was especially proud of his support, performances and touring with the USO.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by two children, Debra Eggleston and husband, Michael, of Mount Airy, and Donald C. Barnes Jr. and wife, Laurie, of Adamstown; stepchildren, Regina Howell and husband, Stephen, Lisa Williams, and Sonny and Rebecca Williams, all of Johnsville; six grandchildren, Kristina Brady, Amanda Pollock, Erica Kearns, Allison Eggleston, Katie Barnes and Anna Barnes; stepgrandchildren, Todd Keyser, Savannah Williams, Sierra Howell, Jessica Roberts, Adam Howell and Samantha Howell; three great-grandsons; one sister, Ruby Pearl Nee of Cumberland; and numerous nieces and nephews. He is also remembered by his first wife and mother of his children, Mary Vigue; as well as close friends and associates, Allen Brown, Tommy Grunwell, Harvey Pollatos and Fred Spielman.

He was preceded in death by a brother, Top E. Barnes Jr.; half-brother, James Brown; and a sister, Norma Jean Kerns. He was also preceded in death by his beloved in-laws, Blanche Campbell, Victor and Charlene Campbell, and Larry, Shawn and Vivian Campbell.

The family will receive friends from 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 28, at Keeney and Basford, P.A., Funeral Home, 106 E. Church St., Frederick. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 29, from the Frederick Church of the Brethren, 201 Fairview Ave., Frederick. Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations to the PPF Inc., Family Crisis Recipient Fund, 11102 Eagletrace Drive, New Market, MD 21774.

Online condolences may be shared with the family at KeeneyBasford.com.

Published Online in The Frederick News-Post on May 27, 2010
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