Barbara Ruth Howard | Obituary


Barbara Ruth Howard, 76, of Marlborough, passed away peacefully at her daughter’s home on October 25, 2021, with her family by her side.

She was born on February 27, 1945 in Staten Island, NY, to the late Muriel Elizabeth (Apgar) Burbank and Richard Mayberry Burbank.

In addition to her parents, she is predeceased by her stepmother, Hazel E. Casillo, of Keene; her son, Kevin S. Burbank, of Langdon; and her beloved husband of 43 years, James E. Howard, of Marlborough.

Barbara was a beloved wife, mother and grandmother who loved her family and friends. She has been a loyal and dedicated member of Marlborough Federated Church since arriving in Marlborough in 1971. She has served her community by volunteering for countless activities over the years through her church, Marlborough Elementary School, The Ladies Circle and Evening United Groups. If something was going on in town, she was there. She was known to her friends and family as someone who always laughed and had fun being around.

Her relationship with Christ and her family were anchors in her life. His generosity is unparalleled. He was someone who would give you their last dime if you were in need. Barbara was always up for something fun. She has facilitated many activities for children in our area, as a Girl Scout leader, assisting in 4-H activities and leading educational tours in the Nation’s Capital via the American Heritage Tour for 15 years. Many years ago she spread joy by playing the clown at religious events. She loved to cook delicious food for her friends and family. His loved ones will particularly miss his masterpiece Jell-O vert and his famous pumpkin pies.

Barbara was a devoted friend and had very strong friendships throughout her life. She always made time for her friends through activities like her “lunch group” and regular “card party” meetings. She never met a stranger and had a strange ability to connect with people from all walks of life. She was the kind of neighbor you would want to have. Before retiring, Barbara held several positions in the city and was a very hard worker, instilling a strong work ethic in her children. Most notably, she loved her working family at Yankee Magazine in Jaffrey and made lifelong friendships throughout her time at this company. She also worked at Chesco in Keene where she provided care to adults with developmental disabilities in the community and in their homes. After her retirement, she enjoyed taking care of her grandchildren Mason, Noah and Kenzie at home.

Barbara is survived by her son, Edward J. Howard (Melissa), of Marlborough; his daughter, Ellen M. Howard (Michael Clair), of Asheville, North Carolina; and her grandchildren: Mason J. Howard, Noah S. Howard and Mackenzie R. Howard of Marlborough, and Norah L. Clair and Conan J. Clair of Asheville, NC She is also survived by her beloved sister, Carole B. Vetland, formerly of Staten Island, NY, now of Pompano Beach, Florida; and his brother, Richard M. Burbank, of Staten Island, NY; her sisters-in-law: Shirley Leckie Reed of St. Paul, Minn., Casandra M. Silk of Kingston, RI, and Cindy J. Letendre (John) of Keene; several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, grand-nephews, special friends and beloved neighbors.

The family would like to especially thank the staff at Four Seasons Hospice and Hospice and Community Services (HCS) in Keene for their excellent care and compassion.

The family will hold a private funeral service on November 27, 2021 in Marlborough, followed by a Celebration of Life on June 18, 2022. Details will be communicated on the time and location of their celebration of life in the spring.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Marlborough Federated Church, 16 Pleasant St., Marlborough NH 03455. To plant a tree in memory of Barbara, please visit our flower shop.


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