Willa Vee Nugent Barker, age 84, of Natchitoches, LA, passed away Monday, April 13, 2009, at her home in Natchitoches, LA with her children by her side. Arrangements are being handled by Blanchard St. Denis Funeral Home in Natchitoches, LA, where the family will receive friends from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM Thursday, April 16, 2009. The funeral service will be at Blanchard St. Denis Funeral Home at 10:00 AM Friday, April 17, 2009, with Rev. Wayne Morrow, Rev. James Thomasee, and Rev. Ron Thompson officiating. Graveside services will be held at Liberty Chapel Cemetery in Williana, LA at 12:30 PM following the service.
Mother was born January 04, 1925 to Willie Hugh and Avey Nugent and was their only child. She grew up on a farm in Williana, LA in Grant Parish and attended school in Dry Prong, LA. Later she attended Normal College in Natchitoches where she met our father, Van Thomas Barker, Sr. They were married in January of 1944, and later started Barker Wholesale Candy and Drug Co. in Natchitoches. They also built and operated the Zoe-Jan Motel and restaurant in Campti, LA. Mother worked in both businesses with dad while raising five children. Willie Vee and Tom traveled extensively to Central America, Canada, and Europe; and greatly enjoyed their trips together.
She is survived by her children and their spouses, Van and Linda of Natchitoches, LA, Zoe and Tony Almond of Sugarland, TX, Len and Ginger of Sugar Hill, GA, Jan and Dennis Nolley of Athens, TX, and Meg and Malcolm Michael of Natchitoches. She also leaves behind her grandchildren, Andy Barker and Shelia of Jonesboro, LA, Jennifer Austin and Trent of Shreveport, LA, Alex Michael of Natchitoches, Ben Nolley of Athens, TX, and step-grandson, Spencer Almond of Sugarland, TX; as well as three great-grandchildren, two step-great grandchildren, and three step great-great grandchildren.
Also surviving are her sister-in-laws and brother-in-laws, June and Cecil Stringer of Natchitoches, Andrew Maggio of Natchitoches, and Beth Schultz of Sacramento, CA; and a close and dear friend, Alton Townsend, Sr.
Although mother was raised a Methodist and is a member of Liberty Chapel United Methodist Church, she regularly attended Trinity Baptist Church in Natchitoches where she truly loved her church family and especially loved her Grace Sunday School Class.
Pallbearers will be Andy Barker, Alex Michael, Trent Austin, Cory Rowe, Ralph Maggio, and Steve Harkins. Honorary Pallbearers will be Gerald Taylor, Cecil Stringer, Chris Stanfield, and Woody Cox.
The family would like to offer a special thanks to Dr. Philip Lindsay, Dr. Otis Barnum and his nurse, Susan, and Dr. Bassam Abi-Rached. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to St. Jude's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN, 38105.