Barbara Helen Greene
September 1, 1923 – May 25, 2016
Barbara Helen Greene died peacefully on Lasqueti Island, BC, after more than ninety-two years of living large. She was the daughter of the Reverend Canon Alan Greene and Gertrude (nee Finlayson), both of Ontario and was pre-deceased by her brothers Alan and John, and is survived by her sisters Marjorie Greene (Parksville, BC) and Catherine Tuck (Charlottetown, PEI), and her husband Bill Barnes (London, UK), as well as a host of family and friends of all ages from around the world who are missing her wild laughter, quick wit and meandering stories.
Barbara was raised in Quathiaski Cove on Quadra Island before moving to Vancouver when she was fifteen. She studied at UBC, graduating in 1945 as Woman of the Year, having proved herself to be fierce academically, politically and on the field hockey team. She went on to complete her Masters of Social Work at the University of Toronto in 1947. After years of directing and organizing community programs, she picked up her life and moved to Mallorca, Spain. From there she went to London and started making radio documentaries for the BBC and the CBC.
She met her husband Bill Barnes in England and several years later when the marriage fell apart (though they remained lifelong friends) she moved back to Canada and began making film documentaries for the NFB. She worked as a broadcaster, researcher and filmmaker until the late 80’s. Thereafter she annually split her life between her three homes in St.Ives (Cornwall, UK), Mallorca (Spain) and Lasqueti Island (BC). Wherever she was she added colour and verve. Her paintings, poems, short stories, her home-cooked meals and stimulating conversations were gifts to those who experienced them. Barb was a creative force in this world and she believed we all have something to share. She was also a natural psychologist and her listening skills, astute judgment and profound belief in human goodness, enabled her to help countless people. She will be remembered for her tremendous free spirit, her generous heart, and the hundreds of tales she told.
There will be a celebration of her life on September 3, 2016 at 1:00 pm
at the Church of the Good Shepherd on Lasqueti Island, BC.