Barbara Joan Eaton Brown, 90, of Searcy, also affectionately named “Angel” by her husband George of nearly 69 years, passed away Thursday, July 27th, 2023 after a lifetime of service especially to help needy children. She was born July 10, 1933 in Elizabeth, New Jersey to Harold Sr. and Flora Wadhams Eaton but spent most of her life primarily in central and south Florida.
She is preceded in death by her parents, and her brother Harold Eaton, Jr.
Barbara graduated with a BA in Elementary Education from the University of Florida. She worked as a teacher and administrator in public and private schools in Florida, but her favorite place to be was in her home with their 3 daughters and her husband George. She also partnered with George and fellow Christians in the establishment of the Downtown Church of Christ in Kansas City, Missouri in 1963. Together they founded Christian Homes for Children, a non-profit Christian foster care ministry, still operating since 1979 providing truly safe homes for more than 1,300 children. In April 2020, she was designated as the recipient of the “One Person Can Make a Difference” award from the National Association of Church of Christ Network 1:27, an organization that recognizes those who work in foster care.
As she sang in church people would turn their heads to hear her voice.
Barbara had a beautiful voice and was often requested to sing at weddings and events. As she sang in church people would turn their heads to hear her voice. She was an exceptional cook and baker. She was especially good at making meatloaf, apple pie, “happy day cake”, and biscuits. She loved hosting people in her home and also cared for aging family members and any of George’s students in need of temporary housing. She mentored many women, taught Bible classes for women and children, and organized events for her church and any ministry they were involved in. She also found ways to be active in any community they lived.
Among the organizations she was a member of include the Women’s Glee Club at University of Florida, Holly Hill Church of Christ “Ladies Night Out” group and “Young At Heart”, along with the Frederick VanPatten DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) chapter in Searcy.
She is survived by her husband, George; daughters, Jocelynn Goff (David) of Searcy, Annette Marie Caceres of Miami, Florida, Vanessa Gilliam (David) of Little Rock, AR; 6 grandchildren, Michelle Goff, Jennifer Sale (Brandon), Kimberly Edwards (Paxton), Chrystal Goff, Cameron Gilliam, Whitney Gilliam (Will); 2 great grand-children: Kadesh Edwards, Zeni Edwards and deeply cherished nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be at Roller-Daniel Funeral Home/Searcy from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, August 4, 2023. A Celebration of Life will be held at College Church of Christ, Searcy, on Saturday, August 5, 2023 at 10 a.m. followed by a Graveside Service at White County Memorial Gardens, Searcy.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in her honor to:
Christian Homes for Children 12001 Southwest 72nd Street Miami, Florida 33183 www.christianhomesforchildren.org Or Iron Rose Sister Ministries P.O. Box 1351 Searcy, Arkansas 72145 www.ironrosesister.com
As we grieve, we also celebrate her ascension to her eternal reward.