Barbara Vinson Chandler, 81, of Opelika, died peacefully at Bethany House in Auburn, Alabama. on Monday, June 7, after a short but hard fought battle with leukemia.
Barbara was born on Dec. 27, 1939 in Fairview, North Carolina. She graduated from Beauregard High School in 1958 near Opelika and was a lifelong member of Hopewell United Methodist Church.
She was born to the late Leland M. Vinson of Opelika and Agnes Howard of Fairview, North Carolina. She was preceded in death by her husband, Thomas Hugh Chandler of Opelika, and her brother, Sgt. Major Leland B. “Bud” Vinson, USMC (Yoko) of Hubert, North Carolina.
She is survived by her three children: Eric Chandler (Lottie) of Opelika, Angie Chandler of Arden, North Carolina, and Lea Ann Nhoybouakong (Alan) of Mt Holly, North Carolina, as well as two sisters, Pauline Hobbs of Newton, Alabama, and Leona Vinson of Opelika.
She is also survived by nine grandchildren: Erica Anderson (Wil) and Jonathan Chandler (Coach JC) (Tiffany) of Opelika, Miranda Chandler (Chris Harrah) of Nashville, Tennessee,
Samantha Nhoybouakong of Mt. Holly, North Carolina, Sgt. Anthony Nhoybouakong, USAF of Lancaster, California, and John, Tony, Alex and Nina Komthongpane of Charlotte, North Carolina. She was also blessed with four great-grandchildren: Thomas, Tucker, Turner and Stallings, as well as many nieces, nephews, cousins and other family members and friends.
Barbara retired from BellSouth in 1995 after holding several positions in Opelika, Phenix City, Montgomery, Anniston and Birmingham, Alabama. She was a graduate of Opelika Technical School. Following her retirement, she earned an Associate of Arts Degree at Southern Union State Junior College in Opelika and served as a library technician at the school for 10 years until her retirement in 2016.
Barbara loved nature, animals, the arts and Native American culture. She was devoted to her family. She was a hand quilter and made many quilts for her children and grandchildren. She enjoyed seasonal rituals of canning vegetables, pear preserves and applesauce. She was a painter, enjoyed ceramics and was an avid reader. She was active in her church, Hopewell United Methodist Church, founded by her ancestors more than 175 years ago, and served as a Youth Sunday School Teacher, among many volunteer positions. She loved the mountains of Western North Carolina and enjoyed many visits to her daughters there. She adored her cats, Cherokee and Apache-Clementine, and was called Granny by her family. She will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved her.
The family accepted visitors in the Parlor at Frederick-Dean Funeral Home on Thursday, June 10, from 6 to 8 p.m.
A private family graveside service was held on Friday, June 11, at 11 a.m. at Hopewell United Methodist Church Cemetery with the Reverend Drue Tubbs officiating.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Hopewell United Methodist Church Cemetery Association
P. O. Box 4157
Opelika, Alabama 36803 or
Lee County Humane Society
1140 Ware Dr.
Auburn, Alabama, 36832 or to
Compassus Hospice Bethany House
Attn: Hospice Angels
1171 Gatewood Dr., Building 100
Auburn, Alabama, 36830.
The family would like to sincerely thank Compassus Hospice and the Bethany House in Auburn for their kindness and support.