Ellen P. Rochefort Barnes, 78, of Beebe, AR, was born Sept. 15, 1941 in San Diego to George and Violet Rochefort and passed away Thursday, October 10, 2019. She was a faithful member of the First Christian Church, a devoted wife, a loving sister, a hard-working mother, a vibrant grandmother and a great grandmother. A stranger she had never met, she was a friend to all. Ellen was a beautiful person who loved everyone. She would spend the majority of her day making others feel loved and special. She knitted to keep her hands from becoming too arthritic, and gave the dish towels away to friends and family. She was generously gifted with many blessings from God. The gift to connect with others was her specialty. She freely gave others her time, ear, and heart. She made sure that everyone she talked to knew Jesus. She enjoyed writing and sending cards for her church, TOPS weight loss group, family and friends for birthdays, anniversaries, encouragement, sympathy or just because; she wanted to let you know that you were special and loved.
She worked the most at home raising 6 kids. She also worked, over the years, at Suburban Casuals in Beebe, the ASU Beebe snack bar, the LRAFB Golf Course Snack Bar and Dillard’s. Ellen was a candle who brought light and life into the room with her. She attended her grandchildren’s every school event, concert, track meet, graduation, soccer, play, social media and she will be greatly missed by all!! Ellen met Dexter on Mission Beach in early 1961 and married in May of that same year, they celebrated 58 years of marriage. Together they moved from San Diego, to Key West, Florida, then back to San Diego before retiring to Arkansas in 1970 to raise their children in Beebe.
She is preceded in death by her parents George and Violet Rochefort. And her very special Aunt and Uncle Sydney and Bettie Vasey.
Ellen is survived by husband Dexter David Barnes Jr; daughter Teresa (Rick) Gunlock of Magnolia, TX; daughter Jo Ellen Small of Eminence, MO; daughter Linda Kinder of Conway, AR; son John Barnes of Findlay, OH; son James (Terry) Barnes of Little Rock; daughter Rebekah (Eric) Pruitt of Beebe, AR; step-son Dennis Barnes of Northern Cambria, PA, and a step-daughter Delaina Hathaway of Van Buren, MO; 5 sisters June Killian of Rigby, ID; May (& Ken) Thurman of Rigby, ID; Georgeann Fitzek of Bull Head City, AZ; and Diane Becvar of Kenai, AK. 18 grandchildren; Diana Gunlock, Megan Gunlock, Jared Gunlock, Brittany Small Eyestone, Cody Small, Sarah Kinder Banks, Gabriella Barnes, Hannah Barnes, Chloe Decker, Elijah Barnes, Kate Ellen Barnes, Cameron Barnes, Claire Barnes, Natalie Pruitt Huffstickler, Parker Pruitt, Jamie Barnes, Marisa Fields, and Jason Reeder. 12 great grandchildren.
Memorials may be made to the First Christian Church of Beebe, P.O. Box 623, Beebe, AR 72012.
Her visitation will be Thursday, October 17th from 6-8pm at Smith-Westbrook Funeral home in Beebe. Her funeral will be Friday, October 18th at 10am at the Beebe Church of Christ, 1906 W. Center. Arrangements by Smith-Westbrook Funeral Home. www.smithfamilycares.com
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