Richard F. Barker (Ebbe, Homie, Uncle Ding), 76, of Latrobe passed away on Saturday, March 14, 2020 at his residence. Rich was born to the late Charles Barker and Margaret “Peg” (Duffy) on August 31, 1943 in McKeesport, PA. Growing up in Duquesne, PA he was one of the original “Burns Heights Boys”.
Rich was one of the kindest, funniest, hard-working people around. After high school he was drafted into the Army in 1965 where he was a proud soldier blessed to serve as a Military Policeman in Bamberg, Germany. Upon discharge he took advantage of the GI bill and became a carpenter at US Steel’s, Duquesne Works. In the mid 80s, the mill shut down and he moved onto his next career as an MR II (carpenter instructor) at Pa Department of Corrections in Pittsburgh (Western Penn). After 8 years in Pittsburgh he transferred to SCI Laurel Highlands in Somerset from where he retired. His work did not stop there, he continued on as a Limo Driver for Regency Transportation and then a parts carrier for Fox & James Leasing and Freightliner of New Stanton. At every job he was touching people, encouraging people and making each laugh. Every person was special to him.
Rich had a great love and a great talent for golf, known by many as Mr. 1 Putt. He golfed with his “Pittsburgh gang” of great friends every weekend for decades at Butlers Golf course and other courses all over Western Pa. He was a member of Ligonier Country Club, Latrobe Elks and Glengarry Golf Club where everyone was like family to him. He and Jan found their greatest enjoyment on the links and that’s where you would look for them! He was also a member of VFW and the American Legion.
Rich loved all sports and coached little league in Duquesne for 13 years. The Pirates were his favorite along with PITT-- both football and basketball. Rich’s greatest attribute perhaps was his kindness to each person he crossed paths with. He was a loving and loyal man and a very devout Democrat. He considered everyone an equal and went out of his way to make the least feel the most. He rooted for the underdog!
Along with Jan, his greatest loves of his life were his three children-- Joy, Boog and Derrick. He loved them unconditionally and was determined to build a better life for his kids. Rich had unbelievable pride for each. They were the light of his life, and he was the light of theirs. May his light continue to shine with each of them.
In addition to his parents, Rich was preceded in death by his sister Anne Jane “Levitte” Haas and her husband Charles Haas, sister-in-law Mary Lee Barker and brother-in-law Buddy Ference.
He is survived by his wife of thirty years, Janet (Rusbosin) Barker; their son Derrick Barker (his fiancée, Meaghan Cutrell), his daughter JoyAnne, (Joe) Drumm and son Richard Barker, Jr. (Jodi), and their mother, ex-spouse Joyce Blotzer; his grandchildren Tony and Brittany Davis, Joy Drumm Moore (Tyler), Samarra and Alyssa Morris, and his special great grandson Whalen. He is also survived by his siblings Mary Ellen Ference, Charles Barker, and Nancy Gribble. He is survived by many loving in-laws from Jan’s family. As well as numerous loving nieces and nephews who each held a special place in his heart!
Visitation will be on Tuesday, March 17, 2020 at Frederick Funeral Home, 1543 Ligonier Street, Latrobe PA 15650 from 2-4 PM. Following immediately will be a funeral service officiated by Pastor Jeffrey Shock at the Frederick Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers please send donations to the Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation in the name of Richard Barker, who was an organ donor.
To send condolences, visit www.FrederickFuneralHome.com.