|Birth: ||Oct. 21, 1944|
|Death: ||Apr. 25, 2008|
On Friday, April 25, 2008, where the Red and the Sulphur meet, Bradford Stanley Barber, passed from this life. He was with his family at home on the Two Rivers Plantation.
A memorial service celebrating his life is scheduled for 2 p.m. Tuesday, April 29, at Chicota Presbyterian Church, Chicota. Cooper-Sorrells Funeral Home of Honey Grove is intrusted with the service.
B.S. "Buddy" Barber was a man fully alive. He was cut out of that Old Texas Rock that is now difficult to find. All of us, his friends and family, are sad to see him go. The tears he leaves behind stop only when we look back and remember happy times; his boisterous laugh; the way he loved children, dogs, goats, cows and horses and listened to what they had to say; the way he shaved every morning of his adult life and smelled clean and fresh; the way he believed in and loved his family - they could do no wrong. In his youth, he was a pretty good team roper though he always insisted he was better in the pasture. He could spot a sick cow a mile away, especially if he was the buyer or if someone else was doing the doctoring; otherwse, he was smart enough to keep quiet about it. Hs thrift knew no bounds, another quality which made his friends laugh. But Buddy was complex. Despite the ruddy skin and wide-brimmed hat, one must not be fooled by his appearance. If so, you would be out-traded quickly, as was the case often enough for his closest associates to roll their eyes and smile, for they all knew better, and if you saw the tilt of his head, and his twinkling blue eyes peering froom underneath bushy eyebrows as if he knew something you didn't, then you were too late, he had you - whether it was the punch line of a story or a cow trade or the sell of a car. But he had a sophisticated core that was curious and probing. He read a lot and he loved talking to new people, from places he'd never seen. He might not embrace every new idea which came along, but he liked to hear about then and ask questions. Buddy loved his stories as much as anybody and cultivated through the years the fine art of storytelling. Never heard him tell the same story twice, they were always a bit different, for better or for worse. Great big hands, thick fingers, and dramatic expressions helped animate his stories, make them more real as they were spun and he always managed to keep them just within the limit of what a rationale person would find believable. We all laugh and know there could've been no other destiny for a man with those initials. When he would get that excited nostalgic look in his eye and almost seem to swell with anticipation, you knew he was recalling a funny story.
The spitcup would be drawn close to his mouth for the lead in: "I won't never forget it..." which was the call to attention as the maestro's baton tapping the podium. He would weave the story, the ebb and flow, dips and swells of a good one:"..well, anyway I was just standin' there mindin' my own business.." at the appropriate lead-in to the next part, the climax, which always ended with his characteristic ample guffaws then taper down to his adding "...aw lordy.." as he rubbed his eyes.
A raucous, motley line of personalities gravitated toward him at the car lot or domino table, but they were no testament to Bud's character. There were good ones and bad ones, outlaws and saints, wetbacks and gringos, cheaters and churchfolk (sometimes one in the same). But they came, and unlike most people, he drew no buffer to push them away. Sometimes he wished he had. But generally, with acquaintances, his motto seemed to be: "let thy hook be forever cast." Maybe he thought he had been all of those things at one point in life.
He is preceded in death by his father Williard Stanley "Bull" Barber, one of the greatest story-tellers of his time, by aunts and uncles, and numerous old friends.
He is survived by people who loved him very much; Kathy, his wife, fierce defender and the best friend he ever had; two sons, Lane and Loren, who are chips of that Old Rock unto themselves; his mom, Loel, who nursed him as a baby and massaged his legs during his polio; two sisters, Beverly and Shari, who share the twinkle in the eye inherited from good parents, numerous nieces and nephews who still wish they had recorded a few of the stories; and friends all over the tri-state area; all will miss him dearly. All take a memory with them to share with others.
If heaven is truly a state of eternal happiness,like everyone says, or even if it is only casual bliss, then it will surely include for him a plug of fresh tobacco, a spittoon and an audience. And is we're real quiet now, and listen closely to the west wind, and if we've said our prayers at night and been real good, we can just about hear the loud guffaws and the ping of quid hitting the cup.
Yes, his passing is for many of us the end of an era, the setting of a sun we are all loath to lose. It was one that warmed the face and awakened an awareness of the joys in life. And we take solace in knowing there will one day be another Dawn, and we'll all be there together again.
Buddy, was a past state director of the Texas High School Rodeo Assn., a member of the Roan Oak Masonic Lodge #860, Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, S.J.,U.S.A. and an elder in the Chicota Presbyterian Church. If desired, the family requests all memorials be sent to St. Paul's Children Foundation, P.O. Box 1238, Tyler, TX 75710, in honor of Drs. Duane Andrews, Ray Germany, Chip Jackson, Laurence Rosenfield, and Frank Ward.
Cooper-Sorrrells Funeral Home, 803 East Main Street, Honey Grove, Texas 75446
Created by: M E Evans
Record added: Mar 25, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 50203143
Added: Mar. 25, 2010
M E Evans
Added: Mar. 25, 2010