Barbara Joan Clodfelter
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Barbara Joan Clodfelter
  • May 18, 1931 - March 11, 2017
  • Illinois

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Ingram Funeral Home

201 E Church Street
West Salem, IL 62476
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Barbara J. Clodfelter, age 85, passed away on Saturday, March 11, 2017, at her home in West Salem. Her loving presence, compassionate heart, and sincere kindness will forever be remembered by her family and friends. She was born on May 18, 1931, in rural Mt. Erie to Vivian (Russell) (1912-79) and Dale Stopher (1909-2003). Barbara was the eldest of six siblings: Donna Joyce Grobe of West Monroe, Louisiana; Buddy Stopher of Tustin, California; Linda Stopher of Carson, Washington; Karen Stopher of Sunnyvale, California; and Verlin Norton (1947-59). At the age of ten, her family moved from Mt. Erie to Bakersfield, California. Later as a teen Barbara returned to Mt. Erie to live with her Grandmother Myrtle (Gillard) (1888-1967) and Grandfather Robert Ransom Russell (1886-1954) so that she could attend West Salem High School.

At the urging of her dear cousin, Patricia (Bradley) Griefzu (1931-2014), Barbara began corresponding with a handsome Navy recruit from West Salem named Lowell Clodfelter (1923-93) who was stationed in the Pacific Ocean during World War II. Barbara often recounted that from the first time she meet Lowell she knew that they would marry. Upon his return from the service, Lowell and Barbara wed on September 17, 1947, in Olney, Illinois. Laughter and an abiding love sustained the couple through forty-six years of marriage. Lowell passed away on December 9, 1993.

Barbara and Lowell were blessed with three daughters: Cindy Hanna of Olney, Karen Harris of Casper, Wyoming, and Kelli Clodfelter (Heidi Sperry) of Chicago; six grandchildren: Jason Clodfelter, Tracey (Andrew) Schuessler, Erica (Mike) Eastlund, Amber Harris, Sarah (Nicholas) Kittle, and Sara (Clyde) Campbell; ten great-grandchildren; and one great-great grandchild. Throughout her life Barbara shared a special bond with her sisters-in-law: Tonibelle Provine (1926-2010), Camilla "Billie" Tyler of West Salem, Shirley Ann Flickinger (1930-2002), Judi Clodfelter of Bone Gap, Adrienne "Rennie" Gillard of Albion, and Sally Dobbs of West Salem.

Barbara's deep dedication to her family and friends was evident in all that she did. From sewing clothes and quilts to baking pies, working second shift so that she could be home to see her girls off to school, and taking in laundry and ironing to make ends meet, Barbara's ready hands were always working to provide for her family or ease a friend's burden. She lifted people up with her generous spirit, quiet compassion, and self-described "dry" sense of humor. Accepting help was never easy for Barbara, however she was able to maintain her independence over past several years with the loving care of Jill Rigg of Bone Gap, who Barbara considered an "adopted" daughter.

Barbara loved life in West Salem where former classmates and co-workers became life-long friends and neighbors became like extended family. Sewing, crocheting, and crafts were among Barbara's favorite hobbies. She was a life-long learner and avid reader who, at the age of 80, learned how to email and download books and music on her iPad.

Barbara delighted in nature-the vastness of a star-filled night sky, the sweet smell of honeysuckle on a summer breeze, and the buzz of humming birds darting around the feeders on her porch-the peaceful beauty of these moments will forever remind Barbara's family of her gentle strength and enduring love.
A memorial service to celebrate the life of Barbara J. Clodfelter is scheduled for March 25, 2017, at 11:00 a.m. at the Moravian Cemetery in West Salem. Memorial contributions may be sent to Hospice of Southeastern Illinois 800 E. Locust St. Olney, Illinois 62450.

Fond memories and condolences may be shared with the family at www.ingramfh.net.

Ingram Funeral Home of West Salem is honored to be entrusted with the arrangements.