Barbara Susan (Misener) Sitton was born February 15, 1946, in Prineville, Oregon, to Robert and Margaret (Schomp) Misener. She joined two older brothers, Robert and George (Bill) Misener. She loved her brothers and they adored her. Barb left her earthly body on May 22, 2020, after suffering a major stroke on February 25, 2020. Due to secondary complications from her stroke, she remained in the hospital and in the hospital’s care facilities for almost three months. Barb made the decision to return to the place she loved the most on this earth: Fossil, Oregon. She wanted to go home to say her goodbyes to friends and family, and she did just that on May 13th, 2020. During those final days she was surrounded by family and friends. She had a group of earth angels who cared for her gently and lovingly, with quiet hymns playing in the background until the Lord called her to her heavenly home.
Barb attended school at Fossil Elementary and then graduated from Wheeler High School in Fossil, Oregon, in May of 1964. She was very active during her school years, participating in sports, cheerleading and socializing. From the time she was born she was a bundle of energy, with her light brown hair, big sky-blue eyes that twinkled, and a cute little turned up nose. Her smile was contagious. The one thing everyone learned early on about Barb, was her love for horses. That love of horses led to her many friends in Fossil and surrounding communities through various county fair and horse activities. And as this writer told her, “You were born a Princess but grew up to be the Queen of the Wheeler County Rodeo.” She had a deep love for the Wheeler County Fair and Rodeo.
Barbara married David Sitton on April 22, 1972. She gained her daughter Debra Michelle with this marriage. In October 1974, they welcomed their first daughter together, Whitney Rebecca. And in November 1977, their second, Torri Irene. Although they divorced in 1999, they remained great friends and spent time together with their children and grandchildren.
Barb adored her children and passed her love of horses on to them. Barb loved all children and they loved her. She always had an open-door policy for her daughter’s friends. They loved her warmth and her cooking, and some still refer to Barb as their second Mom. Barbara was baptized June 13, 1976, becoming a member of the Fossil First Baptist Church, where she had attended with her mother during childhood. She taught Sunday school, sang in choir and was never too shy to tell others about Jesus, her Savior. Barb loved her hometown of Fossil, and though she moved away a few times, she always returned home. She spent a few years in Portland and LaGrande and one year in Big Lake, Alaska, but her longing for home always brought her back to the little town she loved so much. After High School she attended Portland State University to study accounting and bookkeeping, which led to various employment opportunities throughout her life. While living in Portland she worked for Blue Cross/Blue Shield and the law firm Souther, Spaulding, Kinsey, Williamson & Schwabe, and then upon her return to Fossil her employment was to help run the Texaco, Fuel Distributorship and GMC dealership with David. In 1987, she started part-time in the County Clerk’s office as the Deputy Clerk helping with the elections. Two years later she started full time, and some of those hours were spent working in the Wheeler County Planning office. In 2001 she was elected as County Clerk and remained in that position until she retired in December of 2016.
Upon retiring Barb traveled with her cousins, friends and family. She spent a couple winters in Mexico, took trips to Texas, went on a cruise, and to the Oregon coast with her granddaughters. She continued to be a large part of young people’s lives and was a regular attendee to all the local sporting events and fund raisers.
On February 29, 2012, the treasure a grandmother prays for came true! Only double! Twin granddaughters we born; Sylver Jane and Tymber Lee. She beamed at the mere mention of the girls and spent time with them as often as she could. They adored her also; she was their Grammy.
Barbara’s love of the Lord was shown by the way she lived her life. Grace under fire, loving unconditionally, serving and caring for those in need are a few of the ways she showed that love. Her witness continued from the day she accepted Jesus as her Savior. Her faith in a loving Savior never faltered and especially was apparent during her final crossing. Her mind was clear and her requests few. She would ask those who tended to her and visitors who came to say good-bye to read scripture and to pray for her family and friends who didn’t know Christ, that they find Him and accept Him as their Lord and Savior. She knew death is not final. She was being called to “That Mansion Over the Hilltop” to meet God. The scripture she wanted folks to read and believe is John 3:16 &17. She was always a bold witness for Her Savior, if you’ve ever used foul language around her, you know because you were met with an “EXCUSE ME!”.
Barbara was a devoted citizen to Fossil. She is remembered for helping with the painting of Haven House when it was being built. She served on the School Board, Fair Board, as the Horse 4-H leader, and Rodeo Queen Chaperone. For many years you could find her in her office under the grandstands or out in the arena during fair, play nights and the rodeo. She was always willing to help. Anyone who needed a place to stay always had a bed. People were drawn to her because she never knew a stranger and always welcomed you with a big smile and a firm hug. Most recently Barb had started driving the Fossil School Bus (a suburban) to pick up a handful of school kids on the Twinkingham route. The kids on her bus brought a new twinkle to her eye, they loved her, and she loved them. She loved her trips down memory lane to her old stomping grounds that brought back so many childhood memories with her cousins. She loved her drives and would send pictures to her granddaughters of the wild horses she was getting to see on her route.
Barbara is survived by her daughters: Deb (Rick) Beasley of Prineville, Whitney Sitton of Hermiston, and Torri (Todd) Longgood of Richland, OR, and their daughters Sylver & Tymber, her brothers: Robert (Nancy) Misener of Fossil, and Bill (Liz) Misener of Tigard, her nieces and nephews: Randy Sue (Shawn) Humphrey of Hermiston, and their children Cody and Riley, Rob Misener of Bend and his children Chase and Libby, Nicole Misener of Tigard and her children Eliot and Emett, Robyn (Brian) Johnson of Condon and their children Cooper and Wyatt, and Kyle Misener of Tigard, and numerous cousins and close friends she considered family. She was preceded in death by her parents and Baby Misener, grandparents Sylvia and Norman Misener and Emma and Robert Hugh Schomp, and several aunts and uncles.
She was dearly loved and will be forever missed. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to a charity of your choice in her name.
Funeral services will be held at the Wheeler County Fairgrounds in Fossil, Oregon, on Saturday, June 13, 2020, at 9:45 a.m. If you would like to attend via internet the service will be live streamed via The Fossil First Baptist Church’s Facebook page. Graveside service immediately following at the Mayville Cemetery. Sweeney Mortuary of Condon, Oregon, is in care of arrangements. You may sign the online condolence book at www.sweeneymortuary.com.
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