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Date of Passing: Nov 09, 2013

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BEULAH (BUDDY) BARKER Beulah (Buddy) Barker (nee Barber) of Birtle, MB passed peacefully in her sleep in the early hours of November 9, 2013 at Sunnyside Manor Personal Care Home, where she had resided since February of 2010, following the death of her husband and soulmate, Harold "H" Barker. She was in her 98th year and had spent the last two days of her life on this earth with those nearest and dearest to her heart: daughter Faye (Gwenyth Faye Wowchuk) and son Fred (Harold Fredrick Barker). Faithful and loving toward her family, it became apparent that she did sense it was time to celebrate special moments with her soulmate, confident that those left would continue to live life to the fullest - a mantra that she both exercised and celebrated on a daily basis; her mind remained sharp which was a blessing for her children; her long-deteriorating hearing was the genetic predisposition that brought about an end to many activities that fulfilled her life. When she could no longer participate in church, Eastern Star or social events, Buddy and H gracefully retired to enjoy the comforts within and around their home, welcoming family and friends who took time to drop by and/or stay for short holidays. Buddy lived in Birtle for her entire life with the exception of a brief period spent hairstyling in a nearby community. The youngest of the three daughters born to Fred and Mina Barber, she was close to her father as a child, enjoying wood gathering/splitting and other athletic pursuits while also dedicated to her mother. She worked and learned the art of "colouring portraits" at the A. J. Lawrence Photography Shop on a part time basis until she completed her schooling. She and H valued the strength of an abiding love and a partnership that was founded in trust and a shared pride in their children, home and community. They knew a special bond in a marriage that lasted nearly 70 years; as years passed and their activities grew limited, they occasionally commented that they were the oldest couple in this little valley to enjoy the comforts of their own home and each other. Buddy cared for her mother, her husband and her children under one roof for as long as time permitted and following her mother's death, she and H did enjoy international travel, first as a family and later with friends, following his forever incomplete retirement; an arrangement that did contribute to their youthful attitudes, independence and longevity. When circumstances dictated that they remain close to home, they did continue to support one another to allow for their choice to live independently within their family home. Buddy did grieve for her beloved husband yet soldiered on, making peace with the swift changes that occurred following his death. She did take solace in their shared joy of birdwatching/feeding and thus, the feeder outside her window was regularly replenished. She was always highly interested in the lives of her busy children and grandchildren; 8 mm home movies were a highlight and she did look forward to Fred's regular visits and Faye's visits as weather permitted. In the short interims, she always enjoyed her correspondence and prepped for the happy times spent with her great-granddaughters and their parents; such visits provided her with the ultimate joy of knowing she was an integral component in their young lives. It became apparent that Buddy was preparing herself during recent weeks to move past this earthly plain and her children rallied, confident that her destination would reunite her with her partner along with all those close to her heart. Buddy was predeceased by her husband, Harold, son-in-law Wilf Wowchuk, her parents, sisters Thelma and Sadie, Harold's parents, siblings and spouses. She is survived by daughter Faye, her sons, Daren and Dean Wowchuk, their spouses, Colleen and Billie-Joe, along with four great grandchildren. She is also survived by son, Fred and his partner, Roxann along with many nieces and nephews, their children and grandchildren. A private graveside service was held on Wednesday, November 13, 2013 at the Birtle Cemetery, officiated by Elaine Dixon. Pallbearers included immediate family members, and Rae's Funeral Service of Shoal Lake offered their usual exemplary care of arrangements. In lieu of floral tributes, those who choose are welcome to contribute to a charity of choice or the Sunnyside Manor Personal Care Home.

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Nov 16, 2013

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