Barbara Ann Curry (Washler), 91, daughter of Orla Virgil and Amy Washler (Bowen), was born on June 27, 1922, in Langdon, Kansas, and died on July 16, 2013, in Lawrence, Kansas, from complications of pneumonia. She is preceded in death by her beloved sister, Marian Holmes (Washler).
She is survived by her three children and two sons-in-law: daughter Susan Curry Flores, and husband Carlos, of Benicia, California, daughter Page Curry Ginns, and husband Bryan, of Albany, New York, and son John Leeworth Curry, of Lawrence, Kansas.
Barbara was a 1943 graduate of Park College in Parkville, Missouri. She began her independent and adventurous life working for the War Relocation Department at the Poston Arizona Relocation Camp and taught English and journalism to high school students for two years. When the camp closed in 1945, she served as a relocation aide, and then transferred to Washington D.C., where she worked for the Department of the Interior, Personnel Management. She maintained contact throughout her life with the many students and friends she made in Poston, and was recognized for her accomplishments by the Japanese-American Citizens League.
She and George Curry, from Prescott, Kansas, were married in Washington D.C., and then moved to Manhattan, Kansas, where George earned a degree in engineering. Barbara and George raised their children in Shawnee Mission, Kansas, and were divorced in 1970.
Barbara became a counselor for the North Kansas City School District. She was able to make use of her love of travel by joining the People To People Ambassador Program, that offers educational travel programs to students. From 1970 to 1981, she recruited and led groups of students to serve as goodwill ambassadors on summer trips around the world. She began writing poetry about the people she met and her travels.
In 1983 Barbara volunteered for the Peace Corps. She served two years as an English teacher in Kanchanaburi, Thailand, and made many life-long friends there.
Barbara moved to Lawrence in 1995 and was an active member of the Kansas Authors Club. She continued her life-long love of writing as a member, and was proud to have won a Free Verse award for her poem, “Accessible of Joy,” in 2004. She volunteered in Lawrence’s Small World program, teaching English as a second language. The friendships she made in Lawrence, and her children, were the joys of her life.
Memorial service will be at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, Lawrence, Kansas, on Saturday, August 17, 2013, at 11:00 a.m. Interment will be at the Holmes Cemetery in Prescott, Kansas.
Barbara was a teacher, a traveler, and a writer throughout her life, loving life and living it to its fullest.
Messages & Condolences
I am so sorry for your loss. It was a pleasure to read the many accomplishments and contributions made by Barbara. What a full and productive life she led. May she rest in peace.
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