She was born in Portland, Ore., as were her sisters, Lucie, Helen and brother, George. Her father, George Fred Blair, was a captain in the Navy during World War I. Her mother was Lucie Chamberlain Blair. Lucie's father was George Earle Chamberlain, the governor of Oregon in 1907, and later a two-term senator in Washington D.C. Her paternal grandfather, Charles Blair, was chief justice of the Supreme Court in Lansing, Mich. Her paternal great, grandfather, Austin Blair was Civil War governor of Michigan in 1860. There is a full length statue of him on a pedestal in front of the Capitol in Lansing.
Her Aunt Carrie Lee Chamberlain was the first queen of the Portland, Ore., Rose Parade. In 1920 the family moved to Norfolk, Va. Brother Charles was born here. Her father was the district director of the Shipping Board.
Barbara graduated from Maury High School in 1935. She married Anthony Paul Croonenberghs in 1937 and had a son of the same name. In 1941 she married Guy Matthews and had a daughter, Joan Matthews Duquette. In 1968 she married Gordon Robertson, living in Sun City, Calif.
Barbara was in the real estate business and a tour guide for the Sun City Travel Club. She had many wonderful trips – Europe, Alaska, Hawaii and throughout the United States. In 1999 she moved to Crescent City to be near family and met and married Aldo Gallo. She also adopted a beautiful calico cat named “Cleo” from a local animal shelter. She enjoyed many wonderful years on the tranquil Smith River among the towering redwood trees.
Barbara was formerly a member of the United Methodist Church. When she moved to the country, she attended the Fort Dick Bible Church. She was a member of the Senior Center’s Pinochle Club, Women’s Club and the Widows Club in Crescent City. She was a 14-year resident of Del Norte County. The last few years she was a resident of Crescent City’s Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. She enjoyed her friends, staff and social activities there.
Family will fondly remember her for her warm, loving, gentle spirit. She had a great love for sewing beautiful clothes for her grandchildren and crocheting or knitting gorgeous blankets through the years. Her daughter, Joan, and granddaughters, Angela and Kimberly, especially cherish these gifts.
She is survived by her son, Paul Croonenberghs and his wife, Phylis of Twentynine Palms, Calif.; daughter, Joan Duquette of Crescent City, Calif.; grandchildren, Debbie Hummel of Yucca Valley, Calif., Dwight Croonenberghs of Sharon, Mass., Brenda McClay of Joshua Tree, Calif., Angela Duquette of Crescent City, and Kimberly Barr of Crescent City; seven great-grandchildren; two great-great-grand-children; and seven nieces and nephews. She adored children and enjoyed the times spent with her newest great-grandson, 12-month-old Bronson Barr.
She touched the lives of many people with her love and kindness. She will be greatly missed.
The funeral service will be held on Friday, April 13, at Wier's Mortuary Chapel at 4 p.m.
Arrangements are under the direction of Wier’s Mortuary Chapel of Crescent City, Calif.
— Submitted by Wier’s Mortuary Chapel