In Memoriam: Pamela Mary Elizabeth Barnes


Pamela Mary Elizabeth Barnes

Pamela Mary Elizabeth Barnes was born in Utah, October 23, 1943 to Bob and Betty Barnes. Pam has two brothers, Bill and Steve. She has lived in Utah, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Minnesota and California.

While living with her family, Pam was a “daddy’s girl.” Her father was a veterinarian and she loved going with him on house calls. She was also very close with her mother. They loved cooking meals together and reminiscing about days gone by.

Pam moved to California in the early 70s. Pam loved the beach. Pam, her son Steve, Pam’s friend Terry, and Terry’s two daughters, would load up in Pam’s VW bug and head to the beach for some fun in the sun. These were treasured times for all of them. Along with the beach, Pam loved dancing, riding bikes and just being outdoors.

Pam married Al Van Beenen in 1994, another outdoor enthusiast, or at least a water ski enthusiast. Even though Pam didn’t like to fly, she accompanied Al to a water ski tournament in Washington. She was apprehensive about going but when she saw other Canyon Lake Ski Club friends there, she felt right at home. Since flying wasn’t much of an option, Al and Pam bought a motor home and took a cross country trip. They stopped in Florida to watch grandson David play college basketball. They drove to the Vicksburg Battlefield and also stopped in Pam’s hometown in Utah to visit her Great Grandfather’s home.

Pam spent many hours on learning about her interesting family history. As Pam’s MS progressed, she became more and more housebound, but that didn’t stop her from keeping up her relationships. She had late night conversations with Jenia and Wendy, daytime phone calls for family, always ready to listen. She loved to hear what the grandkids and great grandkids were doing. She kept up on Facebook, Twitter and of course FOX news.

Last year Steve asked his mom what she was looking forward to in heaven. Without any hesitation she said, “Dancing, I am looking forward to dancing. I love ballet and have not been able to stand on my toes in 40 years….I want to dance in an open field feeling the grass between my toes.” “From now on,” Steve says, “every grass field I see will fill me with the vision of my mom—with her long, flowing black hair—dancing freely, with a smile on her face. The Bible tells us in Ecclesiastes 3 “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: … a time to mourn and a time to dance.” Pam, it’s your time to dance.