Barry slipped away peacefully and without struggle or pain today, December 9, 2020.
Barry was very grateful for the friends and fellowship he found in the 2nd US, and he and Becky hope that you will raise a glass tonight in his memory.
A little biography for him.
Barry Thomas Roberts was born in Los Angeles in 1954 and grew up with his two brothers Bruce and Gary in the suburb of Westchester. As a boy, he was active, and had the scars to prove it. As a teenager, he showed ability in engineering and drafting as well as music. He played tenor sax in the school bands and bass guitar in a local band, Warbucks, with his dear friends, Billy Oakes and Rick Rydeen. He was also close friends with Gary and Cheryl Gillies, Mark Noel, and many others. It was around this time that he met Becky Robinson, and within a few years they began living together.
He started work at an early age; he was the night manager at the Hollywood KFC, worked on cabinet construction for “Gepetto” and others, remodeling construction under Phil, and eventually followed in his father’s footsteps into the field of civil engineering. He supported Becky as she worked on her bachelor’s degree at UCLA, then after she graduated, they moved from their tiny, ramshackle house in Hawthorne to southern Orange County, where he lived for the rest of his life. He worked as a civil engineering grading designer for Hunsaker and Associates for over thirty years, and was known for his dedication, accuracy, and ability to find elegant solutions to engineering problems.
Barry loved the outdoors from childhood on, especially the western Sierras and the Pacific Ocean. He and Becky enjoyed backpacking with family and friends, as well as tent camping in the areas above Bishop and western Yosemite, and he proposed to Becky in 1982 on a starry night at Hartley Springs. He was an avid and adept fisherman and enjoyed both saltwater and freshwater fishing. His crowning achievements in fishing were the 5 pound trout he caught on their 1984 honeymoon in New Zealand, and the hard-won marlin he caught on a fishing trip off Mexico with work friends. In addition to Mexico and New Zealand, he traveled to Oregon, Costa Rica, England, Wales, and the Civil War and Revolutionary War battlefields of Virginia and Pennsylvania.
In 1988, Barry became a father, and within a short time he and Becky had two fine sons, Thom and David. In spite of both parents’ inexperience, the boys grew up into fine men, of whom Barry and Becky were always very proud. He supported all of their interests, going to every soccer game, concert, marching band and drama performance, and scout event, eventually becoming the leader of a startup coed Venturing (high adventure) crew.
For more than a decade, Barry and Becky have participated in living history educational groups and events, including the St. Ives Historical Society and the (Civil War Union) Frontier Army of the West with his friend, Nick Stephens.
For the past three years, Barry and Becky have been supporting each other through major cancer events. In September, his cancer returned for the third time, and had aggressively spread throughout his liver and lymph nodes before it was discovered. By that time, he was already seriously debilitated and in November, he and Becky made the decision to enroll him in home hospice care.
He is survived by his life partner Rebecca, his sons Thomas and David, his brothers Bruce and Gary, his mother Lois, his sisters-in-law Kath, Karen and Edna, and his daughter-in-law Chloe, as well as very beloved nieces and nephews and too many dear friends to begin to mention. He will be cremated and his ashes will be taken to a wild and beautiful place in the Sierras he loved. Since we are in the Plague Year, a celebration of life of some sort will be planned in the After Times.
His family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to your local historical or wilderness society.