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Joy Barber
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Joy Paulus Barber, 87, died Monday, June 1.

She was born in San Jose to Fred W. and Ruth Paulus. She was a resident of Escalon for 49 years.

She attended schools in San Jose and Oakland, graduating from Oakland High School. While living in Oakland, during the Great Depression, she and her little brother took walks around Lake Merritt, feeding the ducks and having an ice cream bar on their way home. She attended San Jose State College.

It was while attending college that she decided to serve her country in World War II. She was one of 33 participants of the first all-California woman unit of WAC's (Woman Army Corps) to serve. She was the recipient of the State of California Bear Flag given to her by then Governor Earl Warren. She earned the rank of Sergeant while caring for wounded soldiers returning to the military hospitals from the European and Pacific Theaters. Her grandchildren are among the very few who can say their grandmother wore combat boots.

It was while she was stationed at Menlo Park in 1946, that she met the love of her life, Sergeant Kenneth F. Barber. They both loved to dance and worked together with the special services unit that entertained returning military wounded. They were married in July 24, 1946 in Palo Alto. Shortly afterward, they moved to Olympia, WA while her husband finished his tour of duty at Ft. Lewis Washington.

While living in Olympia, Mrs. Barber became a small airplane pilot, and enjoyed flying to different destinations. She earned the nickname "Yoyo Barber" at several landing strips.

During her time as an Escalon resident she contributed her time and energy to many community organizations. She was PTA president while her children attended Dent School. She spent much time with the then Delta Sierra Brownie Scouts and Girl Scouts troops as the troop leader and made sure that each girl in her troop attended the summer program at Camp Menzies and earned merit badges. She oversaw her Brownie and Girl Scout troops as the girls marched through the many festive Escalon parades.

She taught her seamstress skills to young girls as a leader with Enterprise 4-H. She was instrumental in making sure that the 4-H club placed the many American flags along Escalon's Main Street on holidays. She and her husband also chaperoned at the 4-H dances that their children attended and she helped with decorating the 4-H float for area parades.

She was a devoted member of the Escalon United Methodist Church and was an advisor for the church's Youth Fellowship, creating an annual Halloween hayride and Christmas caroling for the children in her group. She was a member of Bykota Bible study group. She enjoyed her time with the Methodist Women Club while they visited and prepared crafts and gifts to be sold at the annual Christmas Bazaar. She helped prepare homemade ice cream and cookies for the annual church ice cream social and frequently brought her homemade cookies after church for social time with the other parishioners.

She worked diligently seeking contributions for charity organizations like the March of Dimes, American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society and American Lung Association for over 50 years.

She was an active member of the Degree of Pocahontas, Hiawatha Council #21. She enjoyed entertaining her past Pocahontas friends "Jossakeeds" with their annual dinners at her home. She was a Past Pocahontas who worked to make sure that donations were made to favorite charities: The Alzheimer Foundation, Kidney Dialysis Association and the Veteran Hospital Organization. As a veteran, she made sure her military comrades received boxes of goodies from the lodge during the Vietnam War. She was a past appointed great chief for the State of California.

She enjoyed being a homemaker, entertaining her friends, baking and sharing her recipes. She loved sewing and crocheting novelty gifts that she shared with many. She particularly enjoyed traveling and seeing the many wonderful natural sights across America. She enjoyed her rose garden, orchids, and homegrown vegetables. She was readily seen cheering at her great grandson's baseball and football games.

She and her husband were honored by the City of Escalon as co-grand marshals for the 2004 Veteran's Day parade celebrating their service to their country and their community.

She will be missed by all whose lives she enlightened with her gentle smile, lively spirit and concern for others. The family extends special thanks to the many friends, neighbors, professional and personal caregivers who did so much to help with her care during the past few years.

She is survived by her devoted husband of 63 years, Kenneth Barber of Escalon; children, Gaylen Barber of Stockton, Chris Barber of Escalon and Christine Ballance of Fresno; brother, Fred Paulus Jr. of Escalon; nieces and nephews, Terri Paulus and Curtis Paulus, Kathy Barber, Michael Barber, Carl Crabtree, Larry Crabtree and Ray Crabtree; cousin, Juanita Hansen of Roseville; siblings-in-law of Donald Barber of Clarkston, WA, and Lauretta Crabtree of Kooskia, ID; grandchildren, Kenneth Gonzales, John Ballance, Jennifer Ballance and Ruth Balance, who called her "Ommie;" and six great-grandchildren.

Private services were held.

Remembrances may be made in her name to The Veteran's Administration Hospital, Palo Alto Fund 2202, 3801 Miranda Ave., Palo Alto 94304; or to Escalon United Methodist Church building fund, 2000 Jackson Ave., Escalon 95320.

Deegan Funeral Home, Escalon in charge of the arrangements.

The Escalon (Calif.) Times

June 17, 2009