Grace Mary (Brown) Barber, 94, of Middleburgh, passed away peacefully on June 3, 2021.
Born in Carlisle, NY on June 30, 1926 daughter of Harold and Ethel (Russell) Brown, she grew up at the Old Brown Homestead on Corbin Hill Road. She graduated from Cobleskill High School in 1944 and worked at a bank in Cobleskill until she married J. Roger Barber on November 7, 1947.
Grace was a farm wife and homemaker with multiple talents. She helped in the dairy barn, drove tractor in the fields, grew plants in the greenhouses and spent thousands of hours on the road stand at the Barber Family Farm in Watsonville, NY. She fed a hot lunch every day to dozens of young people who worked on the farm during the summer months. She graciously opened her home to members of the community, foreign visitors, farm employees and friends of her children. For forty years, her Christmas card was a very creative poem called the “Saga of Embar Farms” which is now a wonderful collection of farm and family history.
Grace was always involved in church life having met her husband, Roger, at a Sunday School Rally. She raised her children in the Fultonham Union Church where she was a member of the Young Adult Club. She later became a member of the Middleburgh Reformed Church where she sang in the choir and was clerk of the consistory. Her squash recipe for 500 has been part of the MRC Ham Supper for thirty years.
Family was the most important part of Grace’s life. She provided taxi service and daycare for her children and then her grandchildren in addition to attending hundreds of concerts, plays and sporting events. Most of her extended family has roots in Schoharie County, so siblings, in-laws, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews were frequent visitors to her home.
Grace was predeceased by her husband, Roger, in 2002 and her daughter, Christine Becker, in 2014. She is survived by four daughters, one son, 17 grandchildren, and 24 great-grandchildren.
Children: Leslie (Gerald) Hooper, Susan Pendergast, Mary (Gary) Hamm, Jim (Cindy) Barber, Lori (Will) Van De Valk, son-in-law Christopher Becker.
Grandchildren and great-grandchildren: Tyler Radez, wife Michelle and sons Jude & Beckett; Jacob Hooper, wife Sarah and children Anna & Liam; Sarah (Pendergast) Bramer, husband Joel and children Luke & Megan; Courtney (Radez) Suyat, husband John and sons Jake Ryan & Emmett; Eric Hamm, wife Emily and son Connor; Carrie (Hooper) Smith, husband Dave and children Isla & Munro; Kathleen (Pendergast) Meredith, husband Jon and sons Noah, Asher, William, & Gideon; Tara (Hamm) Wright, husband Andy and children Owen, Finlay & Sadie; Joanne (Pendergast) Gravelle, husband Josh and children Ezra & Leona; Grace W. Barber; Ford Barber, wife Jessica and sons Forrest, Everest, Westley, & Sawyer; Dana Hamm; Elias Barber; Keegan Griffith; Case Van De Valk; Emily Van De Valk; Joseph Van De Valk.
Grace’s family would like to thank everyone who was part of her life including friends, caregivers and her farm “family.” Thank you also to Coltrain Funeral Home of Middleburgh for their compassion and care. At the request of family there will be no calling hours and no flowers please. A Celebration of Grace’s Life will be held this summer.
Memorial donations are requested to the Middleburgh Reformed Church, PO Box 112, Middleburgh, NY 12122 or to the Fultonham Union Church, PO Box 98, Fultonham, NY 12071
Middleburgh Reformed Church
PO Box 112, Middleburgh NY 12122
Fultonham Union Church
PO Box 98, Fultonham NY 12071