Betty Barta, 77 - April 15, 2009
Betty Lou (James) Blowers Barta of Dallas, OR, died March 26, 2009, at the age of 77.
A memorial service was held Saturday, April 11, at the Salem Mennonite Church in Salem, OR.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 18, at 10:30 a.m. at the Tallin Church south of Arnold. Burial will be in the Tallin Cemetery.
Barta was born on Dec. 9, 1931, in Englewood, CO, to LeRoy Guthrie James and Carrie Ellen (Mooneyham) James, the youngest of nine children.
As a toddler, she survived a flash flood that claimed one brother. After the family moved to Denver, she attended Berkeley Garden Grade School and helped her family weather the depression by cleaning houses and delivering eggs.
The family was introduced to Christianity when Barta was about 9 years old, and Sunday School and church became an integral part of her life. She enjoyed singing hymns with her sisters and was baptized at the age of 14.
At 16, she began work at a printing company to help support her family. She was able to attend Bible college for a time before employment in various other jobs.
In June, 1954, she met Herman Blowers who was stationed at the Fitzsimmons Army Hospital as a medic. After a four-month courtship they were married on Oct. 25, 1954.
Following her husband’s discharge from the Army the couple returned to his home on Tallin Table in central Nebraska to set up a dairy farm.
Herman died from cancer in 1981. After selling the farm Betty moved to Gothenburg where she met Francis “Fritz” Barta. A long friendship deepened and culminated in their marriage on Jan. 31, 1987.
Later that year, Fritz and Betty loaded all their possessions onto a moving truck and made the long journey to Oregon. There the couple spent many years managing apartments, doing custodial labor and reselling collectables in the Willamette Valley, eventually settling in Dallas, OR.
Barta was a lifelong poet. She delighted in gardening—growing large vegetable gardens on the farm and in her later years, perfectly manicured flower gardens, family members said. Drawing and embroidering were additional pastimes, as well as caring for her beloved cat, Chester.
She was preceded in death by her parents, eight siblings, a stillborn grandson, and her first husband, Herman Howard Blowers.
She is survived by: her second husband Francis Eugene Barta of Dallas, OR.; four children—Joseph Blowers of Portland, OR; Mark Blowers of Davey; Linda Dalke of Dallas, OR; and Brynda Blowers of Seattle, WA; and 15 grandchildren.