Ruth Barnes Atwood Obituary
Contributor: jslesk Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
Ruth Barnes Atwood, 93, of Sugar City, died Sunday, May 3, 2009, at Homestead Assisted Living in Rexburg of causes incident to age. She was born Sept. 16, 1915, in Thomas to Louis and Vetris Isabel Adams Barnes. She attended school in Thomas and graduated from Thomas High School. She attended Idaho State University and earned a bachelor's degree in education.
She married Wilbert Rogers Atwood on Nov. 6, 1940, in Rexburg. Their marriage was later solemnized in the Idaho Falls LDS temple. After their marriage, they lived in Pingree, Weippe, Blackfoot, and they have lived in Sugar City since 1949. She taught school at Rockford Elementary before she was married, and taught second grade for years in the Sugar-Salem School District. She retired after 32 years of teaching, having influenced thousands of students.
After her retirement, they spent their winters in Parker, Ariz., and Hurricane, Utah.
She was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
She loved to travel, camp and do temple work. She loved her family.
She is survived by her husband, Wilbert of Sugar City; children Roger (Nancy) Atwood of Rexburg, Steven (Collette) Atwood of Arco and Julie (Bruce) Anderson of West Valley City, Utah; sisters, Wilma Merrill of Salt Lake City, Elna Turner of Riverside, Idaho, and Glenda (Robert) Lanza of Elk Grove, Calif.; 14 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, two brothers and a sister.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, May 7, 2009, at the Sugar City LDS Stake Center with Bishop Russell Thurston officiating. The family will receive friends Thursday from 10 to 10:45 a.m. at the stake center prior to services. Burial will be in the Riverside-Thomas Cemetery under the direction of Flamm Funeral Home.
Condolences can be sent to www.flammfh.com.
Published in Rexburg Standard Journal on May 5, 2009
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Memories of Vetris Barnes that I heard from my husband's (Kent Merrell) family.
Contributor: jslesk Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
Ever since I married Kent Merrell, Vetris' grandson, I have heard wonderful stories about his grandmother, Vetris Adams Barnes from my mother in law, Wilma Barnes Merrell and the brothers and sisters. First of all, Vetris' mother, Johanna Eskelson, was first married as a polygamous second wife to a man named John Allsop. When her first husband died, Johanna, with her 4 children, married Samuel Ferry Adams and had three more children, two boys and a girl, Vetris. Samuel Ferry Adams was Vetris' father. Johanna (according to my mother in law) was a happy, cheerful woman who served as Stake Relief Society President for many years. The Stake covered a radius of 50 miles. This is written up in a Daughters of Utah Pioneers book.
Vetris, it seems, took after her mother. She was cheerful and happy. She and Louis were very much in love and love permeated their home. They traveled by train to Salt Lake to be married in the Temple. They lived on a farm that Louis and his brother homesteaded after their father died. (Their father was living in Kaysville, Utah and had gone up to Idaho to homestead and unfortunately passed away before he was able to move his family to Idaho.) As they had families of their own, they split the farm in half, each receiving 80 acres. This was outside of Blackfoot, Idaho.
Vetris grew a large garden on the farm and the children helped her take care of it. She also had a large raspberry patch. Every Saturday the whole family went out to work in the fields. At noon, Louis sent Vetris and one of the girls back to the house to fix lunch. After lunch he would say, "You girls help clean up the kitchen and let your mother take a nap." Louis was always caring for Vetris. Then the family would get cleaned up and go to town. The children would receive 10 - 25 cents to buy treats or go to a movie. If there was a dance that night, the older ones could stay for the dance. Louis was highly regarded by the other farmers in the area. Wilma heard them come to him and say, "So, Lou, what are we planting this year?" or ask for his advice. When he would slaughter a cow or pig, he would have the children run a portion of the meat to share with their three neighbors. Vetris was always sharing produce from her garden with the neighbors as well. When the grandchildren came along, Vetris would make a quilt for each child. We have a part of Kent's that we have saved.
After Louis passed away and Vetris became less able to care for herself, Wilma, a widow herself, decided to bring her mother to Salt Lake City, so she could care for her. These are stories I heard from that time period.
When Vetris would get up in the morning, she would stand at the window and say, "Darling, what city are we in?" Vetris loved to mix up words and once when someone asked her where she was from, she said, "Pennsiltucky!". Once when Wilma and her family took Grandma Vetris out to dinner, when the waiter asked her what she wanted to drink, she said, "Beer". The family died laughing with chagrin. When Grandma Vetris would visit with the children, she would ask them how much money they needed and would reach into her purse that was by her chair and she loved to give them $10 or whatever she had. Wilma made the children promise to give her the money and she would slip it back into Grandma's purse. When Kent came home each day from school, Grandma would ask him, "Darling, who are you?' and he would always say, "I'm Kent, your favorite grandson!" Wilma told me that she wishes she was as sweet as her mother and that she loved caring for her. That it was such a privilege to care for her. Kent's friend, Barry Baxter, has told me how much he loved to come as a teen and sit and visit with Grandma Barnes .
Vetris has raised a wonderful family who share her attributes of love and giving. She taught her daughters to cook, can and sew. All of us are still using her recipes when we bottle pickles and relishes. She made many, many quilts. When a new baby was born in the neighborhood, as her mother before her, she would grab clean towels and take off to help out.
Once the Merrell children were having a party in the basement and Grandma wanted to go to sleep, but it was too noisy. She asked Wilma to ask the children to quiet down and Wilma said they have a right to have a good time. I imagine it wasn't always easy for everyone.