Bobby Gene Barker 1930-2021

Bobby Gene Barker was born September 23, 1930 in Eckley, Colorado at the family home to William H. and Myrtle Campbell Barker, the youngest of their six children. He passed away surrounded by his family on February 5, 2021 at the Wray Community District Hospital. He attended country schools through the eighth grade and later received his GED when he worked for FSA.
He served in the Marine Corp from February of 1952-1955 during the Korean Conflict where he served as a crew chief for the Fire & Rescue Department at Marine Corp Air Station El Toro, California. He was a proud Marine and thought they were the best branch of service. On September 26, 1952 he married Delores Pillard in Holyoke, Colorado and to this union four children were born, Roger, Rhonda, Rick and Scott. The Marines offered to send him to officers training school but they returned to Colorado and purchased the family farm north of Wray. Bob ranched, baled hay, and drilled native grass for the original CRP program throughout the county, until 1973 when they sold the family farm and moved to town.
He then worked as a field specialist for the Farm Service Agency. He retired from there in 1996 and then worked part-time for Simplot, and CHS delivering fertilizer. He usually started in April and would fire himself in October. He also worked for Blecha Brothers Farm driving a grain cart during corn harvest for a number of years. His hobby was funding the lottery, playing cards at the Vets Club and 4th and Main, playing softball with the Sandhill Road Runners, and “shooting the bull”.
He was one of five of the original members of the Kitzmiller Grazing Association where he served as Treasurer. Bob along with Dale Brueggeman, Jim Merritt, Charlie Sheridan, John Newbanks and Ben Switzer from FHA worked together to purchase the ground from Edna Kitzmiller in 1966. In 1974, he obtained his private pilot certification. He also developed the Rocky Ridge Subdivision West of Wray where people purchased 40 acre plots of land or smaller lots for homes. He was a member of the Wray Elks, served on the Wauneta Hall Board, Wauneta Fire Department, and Soil Conservation Board.
He is preceded in death by his parents Myrtle and William Barker, siblings; Hubert, Lila and Carl Rears, Isabel and Lee Sheridan, Billy, and Maxine.
He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Delores, children; Roger Barker of Monument, Colorado, Rhonda and Jack Soehner, Rick & Karen Barker of Texarkana, AR and Scott and Jana Barker of Loveland. Grandchildren: Luis and Dawn Ramos of McGregor, TX, Dana and Frank Miller of Valentine, NE, Laura and Brandon Schoenthal, Jackie and Chris Edney, Jena and Matt Hendrix, Graham Barker of Monument, CO, Erik Barker of Englewood, Kristin Barker of Texarkana, AR, Dr. Brett and Margaret Barker of Texarkana, TX, Kaley Barker of Grand Junction and Braden Barker of Colorado Springs, 14 great-grand children, and sister-in-law Louise Barker of Yuma, CO, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorials can be made to Wray Community District Hospital to benefit Cardiac Rehab/Respiratory Therapy or the Wauneta Fire Department.
A Visitation & Viewing will be held on Thursday, February 18, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at the Schmidt-Jones Funeral Home in Wray, Colorado. Funeral services will be held at the Wray United Methodist Church on Friday, February 19th at 10:00 with Pastor Ben Wentworth officiating. Interment will be held at the Grandview Cemetery in Wray, Colorado. Schmidt-Jones Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.