Margaret Barr
Margaret Barr

Obituary of Margaret Edith Elizabeth Barr

BARR, Betty (nee Bell)

1936 - 2021

Heres looking at you Kid…”


In loving memory of Margaret Edith Elizabeth (Betty) Barr who passed away peacefully at Rideaucrest Nursing Home at the age of 85, on 30 August. It is with mixed emotions of sadness, pride, and love that we say goodbye and cherish her inspirational life. Betty was born on 9 July 1936, in Mattawa, Ont, to Harold and Edith Bell (deceased). She lived her life with passion, commitment, and grace.


As a teenager, Betty was an early pioneer introducing the nascent Red Cross Swim programs as an Instructor and Lifeguard. Later, she graduated with distinction from the North Bay Teacher’s College in 1956. While teaching at Camp Petawawa she met and married Lieutenant Mike Barr and became a lifelong devoted Army wife and mother of four. She survived 16 moves (four foreign) and one birth on her own while Mike served in Cyprus. Throughout, she ensured the security and happiness of her family. She was a devoted hockey mom and team manager, a talented bridge player, and a President Club status Avon sales lady. Notably, she taught at the International School in Damascus, Syria, while accompanying her husband on UN duty. All four children graduated from the Royal Military College making her a very proud Mom.


She leaves behind her beloved and devoted husband and caregiver of 63 years, Colonel (Ret’d) Michael Barr (RCR), three sons, Col (Ret’d) David Barr (PPCLI), LCol (Ret’d) Jeffrey Barr (RCD), LCol Christopher Barr (PPCLI/L Edm R) and daughter Capt (Ret’d) Laura Kissmann (RCAF). She will be sadly missed by brother Jack and sister-in-law Gail; sister Rosemarie; two daughters-in-law, Dawn and Lee; son-in-law LCol (Ret’d) Paul Kissmann (RCAF); Christine Phibbs-Barr; and 12 grandchildren: Dana, Arwen, Alex (Lt (N)), Ethan, Brandon, Aislin, Mitchell (Lt (N)), Ariana, Kara, Devon, Keith, and Dawson. She will also be missed by nephews Gordon and Douglas Bell, and niece Heather McKinlay.


Betty inspired all who knew her with her stoicism and enduring sense of humour during the past 16 years while coping with the challenges following a debilitating stroke. The family owes a heartfelt debt of gratitude to the caring Nurses, PSWs and staff at Rideaucrest Nursing Home whose affection and professional support over the last 14 years contributed to her quality of life.


Betty/Mom/Grandma/Gran – your service to your husband, family, and country are concluded. Your memory will always be cherished. Betty’s final place of rest and private service will be at the Beechwood National Military Cemetery in Ottawa on 30 Sep, 2021.


May God enfold you in the mantle of His love.



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