The Barbour Family

The Barbour Family

The James E. Barbour Memorial Scholarship was created by James E. Barbour’s family to keep his memory alive and to remind his widow Cheryl Barbour of her role as mother to the Barbour’s two daughters, Michelle A. and Renee E. According to Genevieve J. Barbour, Mr. Barbour’s mother, ’Cheryl’s strength and guidance encouraged Michelle to graduate from St. Lawrence University in Canton and Renee to attend Potsdam State University. We are so proud of Cheryl for having brought up two delightful young ladies.’

Established in 1985, this award aids a student working towards an associate’s degree from Jefferson Community College. Scholarship recipients must show academic promise.

James E. Barbour was born in Norfolk, Nebraska, on January 19, 1946, the son of Donald A. and Genevieve Johnson Barbour. He graduated from Watertown High School in Watertown, New York, in 1964, and received an associate’s degree from Jefferson Community College in Watertown, New York, in 1966.

‘Jim had great courage,’ recalled his wife. ‘His illness developed when he was a young adult. Because of it, he never really had time to do the things he really wanted to do. His illness kept him in a lot of pain and made him very tired. Yet he had a grace and a dignity about him in the midst of it, never allowing people to see how he really felt, showing only calmness and peacefulness around them.’

Serving in the Air Force during the Vietnam War, he was stationed in England. After being discharged in 1970, he moved back to Watertown and later to Canton, where he worked for two abstract firms, Clements, Dudley and Silver Abstract Co. and Northern Abstract Co., respectively.

He was a past president of the Canton Jaycees, a member of the United Methodist Church and the Canton Rotary Club. James E. Barbour died on October 28, 1981.

His sister, Gerda A. Barbour, said, ‘There isn’t a day that goes by when we don’t miss him. He was my idol and my best friend. If I needed a shoulder to cry on or a big brother to stand up for me, there he was. I have a learning disability. He never allowed me to fail, because every step of the way, he encouraged me to become anything I wanted to be. Without his support, I would not be graduating from Jefferson Community College with the class of 1995.’

The Jefferson Community College Foundation is grateful to the Barbour family for developing this scholarship.