Barbara M. Spurgeon, 95, Scottsbluff

Barbara M. (for Mary) Spurgeon, 95, of Scottsbluff, NE, beloved and loving mother and wife, died August 2 at the West Nebraska Veterans' Home. Barbara was born on January 6, 1918 in Cherokee, Iowa to Joseph and Ruby Tilton Rogers. She was the oldest of five children and the only daughter. Her family moved to Gering in 1927 and she graduated from Gering High School. After high school she attended Barnes Business College in Denver and then worked for several years in the office of the Scotts Bluff County Registrar of Deeds. During this time she met John Darold Redfern (Red) who was working in the Civilian Conservation Corps Camp at Scotts Bluff Monument. They were married in Gering in 1942 and lived in Seattle, WA. They had two children, Judy and John Mark. Red died of cancer in 1948 and Barbara and her children moved back to Gering and later to Scottsbluff where, at a square dance, she met Robert E. Spurgeon. They were married in 1952 and moved to the family farm east of Scottsbluff. They had three children – Mary, Sam, and Jeff.

Barbara was a long time and active member of the United Methodist Church, first in Gering and then later in Scottsbluff where she taught Sunday school, served on church boards, and participated in women's groups. She was also an active volunteer in the West Nebraska Hospital Auxiliary. She spoke fondly of her years as a member of the Valley View Extension Club, and enjoyed playing bridge with a group of close friends and relatives.

In addition to her family, Barbara loved music, flowers, and playing games. She always had a great garden and was a wonderful cook and homemaker. At various times during her years on the farm, she also worked as a secretary, an assistant cook at her children's school, and as a home care companion for West Nebraska Medical Center. Barbara lived her life with courage, perseverance, optimism, kindness, and appreciation. Always grateful, she endeavored to leave each place better than she found it.

Survivors include her children: Judy (Dave) Rama of Chadron, NE; Mark (Sharon Madsen) Redfern of Helena, MT; Mary Spurgeon of Bellevue, NE; Sam (Missy Johnson) Spurgeon of Angora, NE; and Jeff (Judy Biener) Spurgeon of Brooklyn, NY. She is also survived by many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her brothers Joffre, Blair, Mark (Mick), and Jay; her husband, John Darold; and, in 2010, her husband, Robert.

A memorial service to celebrate Barbara's life will be held Saturday, September 21, at 10:00 AM at First United Methodist Church of Gering, NE, 900 O St, with the Rev. Lauren Ekdahl officiating. In lieu of flowers, a memorial may be directed to the Nebraska Children's Home Society. Tributes of sympathy may be left at Dugan-Kramer Funeral Chapel and Cremation Services in Scottsbluff is in charge of the arrangements.

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