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In Memory

Donald Eugene Barnbrook VIEW PROFILE


Adams 1944 Donald E Barnbrook

Jan. 11, 1926 - June 30, 2017


SOUTH BEND - Donald (Barney) was a loving husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, and a caring lifelong educator and coach with the South Bend Community School Corporation for 37 years.

He was born to the late Esther (Heierman) and Elmer E. Barnbrook, and was raised in South Bend. He married Marjorie A. Kirkendorfer, his high school sweetheart in 1946, who preceded him in death as well as a daughter, Lynn A. Barnbrook. He is survived by his children: sons, James A. (Kim) Barnbrook and Timm D. (Cindy) Barnbrook, both of South Bend; and a daughter, Marcia L. (John) Farron of Granger; seven grandchildren, Jill (Matt) Wander, Douglas, Ryan and Reid Barnbrook, Steven (Katie) and Matthew (Emily) Rudolph and Kristina Farron, and great-grandson, Lennon Rudolph.

Barney graduated from Adams High School in 1944 and went into the Navy Medical Corps and worked at the Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD for 2 years before his discharge. He married Marjorie and returned home to get a Teaching degree from Olivet College in Michigan. He received his Masters at Indiana University, Bloomington. He started his teaching career at Muessel Elementary and coached basketball, tennis, and track, and then to Riley High School. He taught Biology and Chemistry and coached Golf and led the team to 2 State Championships in the early 60's, and was inducted into the Indiana High School Golf Coaches Association Hall of Fame. The first tournament win was easily remembered by all those who participated because recent torrential rains left the course littered with dead fish when the White River receded. The smell was awful. He was also one of the organizers of the Ernie Kaeppler Memorial high school golf tournament, named after the former Mishawaka school coach and friend, which is still being played every year. He left Riley to teach at LaSalle High for eight weeks, when he switched to Adams High to teach and coach the Varsity Basketball team.

As an educator, he was instrumental in helping thousands of students and athletes throughout his career. Even though he was the head of the math department at Adams, he usually opted to teach many of the beginning level math classes because he was a strong believer in teaching the basic fundamentals in math, as well as athletics. Former students often commented that they would not have made it through high school without his extra help and tutoring after school and before school. He was just committed to encouraging and helping all students.

John Adams was a big part of Barney's life. He was a member of the first full graduating class in 1944. He participated in track and basketball, where Adams won their first basketball sectional, and was President of his class. In 1965 he began teaching Biology and Math when he transferred to Adams to be the varsity Basketball coach from 1965 to 1969. As a coach they won the Sectional Championship in 1967. He retired in 1988 after 23 years at Adams. Barney's children were Adams graduates, as well as two of his grandchildren. He and Marjorie enjoyed watching all of their grandchildren participate in their respective sporting events, as well as watching his grandson Doug coach JV basketball at his beloved Adams. He was very involved with the Central Core Committee during the reorganization and possible closing of Adams. He also supervised student teachers through IUSB.

Besides spending time with his family, he was an avid golfer and still played in his nineties. He was able to have 2 Hole-IN-Ones -- The first in 1967 at Eberhart and his last at age 88 at Whispering Pines. He enjoyed playing with his daughter Marci. His love of fishing he enjoyed with his sons, Jim and Timm. His biggest fish caught was a (30 inch) Northern Pike at Donnell Lake in Michigan.

He most of all loved his family and was so proud of the fact that all of his family is so close and all get along so well. His friends and acquaintances constantly made comments about the wonderful family that he had.

Visitation and funeral services are pending. Welsheimer Family Funeral Home North is assisting the family with arrangements. Memorial contributions in Barney's name may be made to Grace United Methodist Church, 3012 S. Twyckenham Dr., South Bend, IN 46614; or the Center for Hospice Care, 501 Comfort Pl., Mishawaka, IN 46545. Family and friends may leave email condolences at www.welsheimer.com.

Published in South Bend Tribune on July 2, 2017

jmc 2 July 2017

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09/25/19 01:20 PM #1    

Catherine Dance (1967)

Loved him as my biology teacher.  Still remember him saying: "Indiana is the only place you can stand up to your neck in water & have sand blow in your eyes."  When I moved to Michigan I learned I could apply his Indiana statement to Michigan, too.  

07/19/20 07:15 PM #2    

Judy Fiedler (Snyder) (1955)

Judy Fiedler Snyder '55

Barney was my math teacher at Riley High School and a great one! He lived across the street from me on Irvington so I babysat his kids a lot. He and I worked at James Monroe in the summer recreational program so he would swing across the street and pick me up to spend summer afternoons working there for the South Bend Park Department.  A wonderful family!

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