Bernard Eugene “Skip” Barr, 82, of Lebanon, passed away on Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020, at StoneRidge Towne Centre. He was the husband of Frances C. (Keisch) Barr, with whom he celebrated 57 years in marriage.
Skip was born in Millersburg, PA on Feb. 3, 1938, to the late Charles and Marie Barr. He was a graduate of Hershey High School. He was a member of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Lebanon.
Skip joined the Airforce Civil Air Patrol (squadron 155 Search and Rescue Team) from 1950 to 1954. He was a member of the PA National Guard from 1953-1954 (Battalion D 899th as a cannoneer). He then joined the U.S. Navy from 1954-1958 and served in Korea aboard the U.S.S. Beale DD471 destroyer and the U.S.S. James C. Owens DD776 destroyer. He was a 2nd class Boiler Technician. He received the United States Department of the Navy’s highest non-combat medal when a fellow sailor was washed overboard and knocked unconscious. Barr jumped into the ocean removed his own life jacket, placed it on the sailor, and kept him afloat until he was rescued by helicopter. The Lifesaving Medal for an act of bravery. This is awarded for acts of heroism to the members of the United States Navy.
He had worked maintenance for 10 years at Park Silk. He operated heavy equipment for 12 years at Calcite Quarry. He was a night shift foreman for 11 years at Sheridan Slag. He then retired after working 21 years at Lebanon Country Club in the Greens Department.
He was a member of National Association of Destroyer Veterans since 1989, American Legion Post 945 since 2004, AmVets Post 293 since 1994, North American Fishing Club, Goodwill Fire Company and Lebanon EMA since 1962, Assistant County Fire Chief for five years, Lebanon County Civil Defense Truck Commander for eight years, Lebanon EMA Rescue Squad, and Rescue Chief for 10 years.
He received two distinguished service citations from the City of Lebanon. He was a registered hazardous materials and radiation fire instructor. He was a member of the Boy Scouts of American for 30 years, where he served as a cub master, Scout Master, Explorer Post Advisor, and a member of the district committee, where he received multiple awards and commendations, and Four Abreast Racing Club for 22 years.
He absolutely loved the outdoors. His favorite thing was camping, and he excelled as the camp cook. He took great pride in baking cakes in his Dutch ovens. He enjoyed taking the boy scouts on survival weekends and teaching them how to survive in the woods in the winter. They would camp outside in tents or build shelters in January! His motto was “anyone can camp in July.” He repeatedly spoke of how much he enjoyed the family camping vacations. He loved his dogs and enjoyed fishing, boating, nature trails, riding his bicycle, and building model battleships. He was obsessed with wrestling and loved sprint car racing. He spent countless weekends at the local dirt tracks and, in the 1960s, even helped as a mechanic at Silver Springs Speedway. One of his biggest traits was that he could fix anything: engines, bodywork, chassis, bikes, house repairs, electrical, plumbing, heating, roofing, windows, and appliances; you know it and he could fix it. He will be greatly missed as he has guided, led, and taught so many skills to so many people over the years.
Surviving, in addition to his wife, are his sons, Joseph Barr and David Barr, a daughter-in-law, Bonnie, and five grandchildren, Brandon, Jordan, Alec, Zakary, and Geordan. He was preceded in death by his siblings, Ronald, Robert, and Karen.
Due to the current pandemic, services will be held privately at Indiantown Gap National Cemetery with military honors.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Compassionate Care Hospice.