Barbara King Marcy: 1927 – 2018
Lincoln Nebraska (formerly Chadron and Hay Springs)
Barbara Ruth King Marcy was born April 9, 1927 in Amherst, Nebraska, one of five children, and the only daughter, of George and Myrtle (Harris) King. Barbara passed Dec. 23, 2018 at Country House III in Lincoln Nebraska.
Barbara King was introduced to Charles Marcy by her brother – and Charles’ fratemity brother – Keith King and his wife Betty. For the rest of their lives Keith and Betty proudly claimed credit for what proved to be an enduring marriage, partnership, and friendship. Barbara and Charles married on January 29, 1955, and were life partners until Charles’ death in 2005.
Barbara King graduated from Amherst High School and Keamey State College, and pursued graduate study at the University of Wyoming. She taught as a schoolteacher in Lyons, Ainsley, Oshkosh, and Chadron schools before moving to the Marcy ranch in the Panhandle upon her marriage to Charles. She greatly valued education, and served as a Commissioner on the Nebraska Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education.
She was proud that all of her children graduated from the University of Nebraska. This lifelong commitment to learning and appreciation of education extended to both formal pursuits and lessons from “the school of hard knocks.”
Barbara was an active partner in Marcy Brothers Angus (later Marcy Cattle Company), where she managed the books and kept records for the registered Angus herd, as well as helping with outdoor work.
She was a visible state and national representative of the industry, serving as President of the Nebraska Cow-Belles, Queen of Ak-Sar-Ben and Ak-Sar-Ben Goodwill Ambassador, a member of the Nebraska Beef Council, the Nebraska Cattlemen’s Historical Museum, along with Charles was a founding member of the Coffee Gallery in the Mari Sandoz High Plains Heritage Museum, and was inducted into the Nebraska Agricultural Hall of Fame.
Barbara and Charles raised their family on their ranch in westem Nebraska. She was an active member of the United Methodist Church and Banner Community Club, and Worthy Matron of Eastern Star. She also served on the Nebraska Rural Health Advisory
Commission, the American Legion Auxiliary, and helped with 4-H and school events throughout the state.
In 1989 the couple retired from full time ranching and moved to Chadron, Nebraska where they enjoyed easier access to Fort Robinson, the Black Hills, the many activities at Chadron State College, time with friends and family, and travel.
In 2013, Barbara moved to Lincoln and appreciated the friendship and support of the community at Savannah Pines. In 2017, Barbara moved to CountryHouse in Lincoln, a facility that offered her kindness and professionalism through the end of her life. Hospice of Lincoln provided invaluable support and ensured she had a compassionate end to a long and full life, with her family present.
She remained curious about others’ life and work, the development and importance of agriculture, opinionated about politics, an avid reader, and an enthusiastic fan of Cornhusker athletics and Rockies and Royals baseball to the end of her life.
Barbara was preceded in death by her husband Charles Marcy. She was also preceded in death by her brothers Stanley, Keith, Clark and Theodore (Ted). She is survived by her five children: Tom Marcy of Hay Springs (Kim), Ruth Gerdes of Auburn (Myron), George Marcy of Fort Collins, Colorado (Andrea), Sara Andres of Portland, Oregon (Gregg, deceased), and Mary Marcy of San Rafael, California (Jan). She is also survived by sister-in-law (and matchmaker) Betty King, and by grandchildren, great- grandchildren and many nieces, nephews, and friends that were very dear to her.
Committed to service and to learning, Barbara donated her body to the University of Nebraska Medical Center for research. A private family service will be held at UNMC. Memorials checks may be made out to the Masonic-Eastern Star Nebraska Home for Children; 2415 N Mains Street Fremont NE 68025; or the Nebraska Cattlemen’s Foundation Scholarship Fund, and sent to Tom at 3950 470th Road, Hay Springs, NE 69347.
Barbara will be cremated and interred next to Charles in the Hay Springs, Nebraska cemetery. A public celebration of her life will be held at Camp Norwesca Chapel July 20 at 2 pm.
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