Obituary of Barbara Jean Rich
Barb or BJ, as friends and family called her, was born on April 13th,1951 to her mother, Mary Crawford Ewing and father, William Ewing. She passed from this earthly life into the loving arms of her Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ on February 8, 2022 in Loveland, Colorado after a long illness.
Barb graduated from Aurora Central High School in the class of 1969. She attended the University of Northern Colorado before moving on to a successful career with the Colorado Department of Transportation. She worked for CDOT for over 30 years, from 1971 to her retirement in 2003. She was proud of her many accomplishments with CDOT from helping build roads all over Colorado, including helping build the engineering marvel of the U.S. Interstate 70 through the Glenwood Canyon. She also drove snow plows for CDOT during major snow storms. She was so gifted in driving a snowplow that she competed as one of the top snowplow drivers in Colorado in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
Barb had many passions in life; from bowling at a competitive level, to rescuing many cats and dogs over the years. No one loved their pets more than Barb. She also loved her various hobbies like raising bonsai trees and photography. She was gifted in photography and even won the 2000 Weld County "Click" photo contest. Barb was an adventurer. She loved to ride motorcycles and even loved being part of auto racing.
One of the great passions Barb had in life was loving and serving a community of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Through her Church family and other organizations, Barb spent countless hours serving both children and adults. This passion sprung from her lifelong love and care for her younger brother, Billy Ewing, who happened to have Down Syndrome. Billy was a very special person to Barb and she loved him dearly. Billy lived with Barb and her husband and was an important and valued member of their family until Billy passed away in 2007. After Billy's passing, Barb would often say, "the next time I get to see Billy will be in Heaven and he won't have Down Syndrome anymore."
Barb met the love of her life, Jim Rich, in jr. high school in the 1960s when Barb was in 7th grade. They stayed friends for years through bowling and auto racing, but in 1990 their friendship turned into a deep love and marriage that would last just a few weeks shy of their 31st wedding anniversary. They were married on Saturday, February 23, 1991. Their love story continued through difficult times, when Barb was unable to live at home due to her health. Jim was at her side daily visiting her and making sure she always received the care she needed. During the original Covid restrictions of 2020, when Barb was not allowed to have visitors, Jim went to sit outside Barb's window daily so she could see him and know he was near her side and that she was loved.
Barb leaves numerous friends behind including her church family at Bent Tree Church in Loveland Colorado.
She is survived by her husband Jim Rich, her brother John Ewing, her sister in law Karen Ewing, her nephew Ben Ewing and his wife Jean Ewing, her nephew James Ewing and his wife Holly Ewing, her niece Katie and her husband Martin Garvey.
She is preceded in death by her mother Mary (Crawford) Ewing, her father William Ewing and her brother William (Billy) Ewing.
A funeral service for Barbara Jean Rich will be held 10AM on February 24th, 2022 at Bent Tree Church (1825 W. 37th St. Loveland, Colorado 80538).To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Barbara Rich, please visit Tribute Store