June 23, 1937 - Oct. 1, 2012
ELKHART — Barbara A. Hungate, 75, unexpectedly passed away Monday, Oct. 1, 2012, at Elkhart General Hospital.
She was born June 23, 1937, to Charles Parker Eastman and Irene (Bachman) Eastman in Green Bay, Wis. Her family moved to Fond du Lac, Wis., when she was a young child. Barbara graduated from Fond du Lac High School in 1955. She received a bachelor of science degree majoring in occupational therapy from the University of Wisconsin at Madison in 1959.
She married Eugene (Gene) W. Hungate June 15, 1963, in Fond Du Lac.
Gene and their three daughters, Ann Hungate of St. Clair, Mich., Laura (Bruce) Patchel of Marysville, Mich., and Jill Hungate of Elkhart; and grandchildren Alison, David, Meredith and Andrew Patchel all survive her. Another survivor is her sister, Mary (Tom) Mathews.
Barbara began her working career in 1960 at the Elkhart Rehabilitation Center. She also worked at Oaklawn Day hospital, other hospitals in the area and ultimately worked with special needs children in Elkhart County Schools until her retirement in 2002. Barbara kept track of many of her students and took special pride in them as functioning adult citizens in the community.
Barbara was known for her environmental concerns and her ability to recycle anything. She loved gardening and then canning freezing or drying the produce. She was a knitter, sewer and quilter.
Barbara was firm in her Catholic Christian beliefs. Barbara served on several committees and ministries at St. Vincent de Paul parish in Elkhart. Participation in a small faith-sharing group made up of St. Vincent parishioners was a particularly enjoyable activity for Barbara.
Barbara was very proud of her children and grandchildren and enjoyed being with them, encouraging them and sharing their accomplishments. She also enjoyed traveling with Gene, bowling, landscaping and gardening. She tolerated sports and went to many games with Gene.
Viewing and visitation will be from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5, 2012, at Billings Funeral Home, 812 Baldwin St., Elkhart. A vigil rosary will be recited at 7:45 p.m. Friends may also call for one hour prior to the Mass of Christian burial at 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church, 1108 S. Main St., Elkhart. The Rev. John Endejan (Barbara’s godfather) and the Rev. Matthew Coonan will concelebrate. In lieu of flowers, those who desire may make memorial donations in memory of Barbara to St. Vincent de Paul Church or the Elkhart County Community Foundation. Online condolences may be sent to www.billingsfuneralhome.com.