Columbus, OH — Ronald D. Barker, 79, died peacefully surrounded by his family on March 25, 2019.
Mr. Barker was born in Idaho, Ohio, on June 25, 1939, to Ishmael and Anna (Russell) Barker. He attended Piketon and Waverly Schools until he enlisted in the United States Navy where he served for six years. After leaving the Navy he married the love of his life, Donna Lee Tussey, on Aug. 8, 1961. They raised four sons and three daughters together.
He retired from WearEver/Newell in Chillicothe, Ohio, where he was a factory worker. Upon retiring he pursued his passion of racing Standardbreds with his family. He owned, trained and drove Standardbreds for many years. He passed the reins to his family, leaving the training and driving to his children and grandchildren. He still enjoyed owning several horses, going to the races, and always loved to go to the horse sales.
He was well known for having a used auto parts business and loved wheeling and dealing in anything cars, which he passed on to his kids.
Anyone that knew him well, knew that he lived for his family in one aspect or another. His love and devotion to his wife was visible to anyone that looked their way, never afraid to show affection for her, they were the example of how a couple should love one another. He always loved to hear about the exploits and escapades of his children and grandchildren, wanting to know all of the gossip, whose team won, how busy they had been or how the horses raced.
He always had a story for every occasion, that to an outsider would sound like an untruth, but he could always back them up. One could always count on him to tell them what he thought whether they wanted to hear it or not, never cutting anyone any slack.
Always an early riser he spent most mornings calling and checking in with his kids, and as much as it irritated them at the time they will miss having him call at 5 a.m. to ask if they were “planning to sleep all day.”
Some of his favorite pastimes included watching Westerns and trashy talk shows, having heated debates with his youngest granddaughter Jai about anything and everything, and going to dinner with his wife and/or family. He will be deeply missed by his family.
He is survived by his wife, Donna; brother, Don; sisters, Nancy Trent and Sunny Hutton; sons, Ronnie (Brenda), Shawn (Melissa), Tony (Kristi) and Dustin (Jamie); daughters, Nina (Mike) Howard, Becky (Tony) Zubkoff and Angie (Justin Hall); grandchildren, Emily Peterson, Shantell Poolaw, Jessie Williams, Crystal Fyffe, Missy Francis, Derrick Howard, Shawn “Two,” Seth Flannery, Josh Flannery, Ali Porter, Leslie, Karri Michael, Brittani, Tyler, Gabbi Depew, Lindsay Cutright, Austin, Summer Zubkoff, Morgan, Landon, Justin “Bub” Hall and Jai Hall; many great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews; and his favorite dog, Poopsie. He was preceded in death by his parents, Anna and Ishmael; stepfather, Clayton Johnson; stepmother, Sophie; daughter, Karyn Peterson; sister, Nina Murray; and brothers, Tommy and Johnny.
His family would like to thank Adena Hospice for the care they provided and a special thanks to nurse Mercedes Schaeffer.
A private service will be held at the convenience of the family.
In lieu of flowers all cards, condolences, and contributions can be sent to the Haller Funeral Home in Chillicothe, Ohio, c/o Ronald David Barker Family.