Bobbie (Stapleton) Barbee, 90, passed into the arms of Jesus at her son's home in Grants Pass on Aug. 15, 2019.
She was born to Orin "Babe" Reeder and Mildred Gordon on Sept. 5, 1928 in Portland. Her early years were in Klamath Falls and in 1932, she moved to California with her mother and stepfather, Nick Burke. Her mother's death in 1934 precipitated her move back to Klamath Falls where she was raised by grandparents, Grace McCormick Reeder and county judge, U.E. Reeder. After graduating from high school, she attended the University of Oregon where she met and married Hugh Stapleton on April 3, 1948. After Hugh's graduation, they settled in Klamath Falls where their son, Ulys was born in 1949. Christie, their daughter soon followed in 1950. Bobbie's eyesight was "challenging" but it didn't stop her from sledding, ice skating, swimming or being the recreation director at the local park. She loved children and visiting neighbors.
A job change for Hugh in 1958 moved the family to Lakeview. Bobbie continued leading Cub Scouts and Pee Wee baseball. Sadly, Hugh was killed in a car accident in 1961 just months after moving the family to Hines for a new job. A move back to Lakeview ensued. Bobbie's home became the local "coffee shop-counseling center" and kids' hangout. She was a Girl Scout leader, girls softball coach, Camp Cottonwood counselor, avid bridge player, "Coffee Cup" bowler, Beta Sigma Phi and Eastern Star member. She even learned to snow ski at age 35 to keep up with the kids. The Lakeview community supported her and the children in numerous ways.
She began her love of nursing as a CNA at Lake District Hospital and went on to graduate in 1973 from Treasure Valley Community College as an LPN. Her first job was at Holy Rosary Hospital in Ontario.
Bobbie married Ron Barbee in 1973. She and Ron lived in Ontario, Lakeview and Burns where Bobbie worked as a nurse in the local hospitals. She was known for her sense of humor and her extra effort in making a patient comfortable. She retired from Harney District Hospital at the age of 70.
Although working fulltime she always had time for grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Camping, sightseeing, bowling and card playing were her specialties.
In 2013, she began living in a rotation with her son and daughter. In 2015, she moved to Pioneer Place in Vale, where she again became the life of the party. Always joking and sharing laughter with the staff and residents. She loved her new "home". In 2019 she moved to Grants Pass to reside with Ulys' family.
Bobbie's home was a welcome spot for neighbors and friends at all hours of the day, where the coffee was always on and thee were plenty of ashtrays. She was known by many as the one adult with whom they had way too much fun, and by her children as an incredible mother and father. Her outgoing personality and sheer enjoyment of life and people are remembered by the many whose lives she touched. She was blessed with an energetic family who called her "Gammie" (her grandmother's nickname), including her son Ulys, daughter-in-law, Cheryl and their children - Toby (Brooke), Ashley ((Travis), Brett and Stephanie (Ron), daughter, Christie, son-in-law, Michael and their children - Chad (Rachel), Bret (Tiffany), Kirk (Courtney), Dana (Brad) and 19 great-grandchildren.
Don't let adversity overcome you - be a "Gammie" in someone's life!
Donations may be made to Camp Cottonwood Inc., PO Box 126, Lakeview, OR 97630.