September 18, 1939 – January 11, 2019
Barbara was born in Bend September 18, 1939 to Thomas and Opal Burton. She passed away very unexpectedly on January 11, 2019. Her kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, friends and her dog wanted her around so much longer. She was a vibrant, creative woman whose heart and home were open to all. She was well loved!
Barbara grew up in Bend, spending the first 12 years of her life on the family ranch near the current location of St. Charles hospital. Then the family bought and ran the Bancroft Hotel in downtown Bend.
This past December 15th marked 30 years since Barbara’s husband Don Dieffenbach passed away. They were married October 3, 1958 in Pasadena, California and raised their children Donny, David and Jayna, in Bend and across the US and Alaska. While in Alaska, Barb was the curator of the Oscar Anderson House, the first wooden framed house in Anchorage, a National Historic Landmark.
Barbara was a lifelong artist. Her first “real” job was color-tinting photos for the Bend Bulletin. She was a painter, to the delight of her dog park friends; she recently painted portraits of many of their dogs. She was a Raku sculptor and was a member of the Raku Artists of Central Oregon. Like her parents, she was also a life-long member of the Sagebrushers Art Society. She went there most weeks to paint and often exhibited her work there and across Oregon and Alaska. Barb attended college in Anchorage and Bend.
Barbara loved sharing her passion for art and sense of adventure with her grandchildren, Brett, Alexa, Sariah and Donny.
She was always a dog lover, there was rarely a time she did not have a dog. To be one of Barb’s dogs meant a life of joy and pampering. Barb once said about her life, “I could have gotten more done, but I had dogs!”
Barbara was a prolific reader, loved to watch the birds in her yard and was an extensive traveler. Barbara was a compassionate person; she served as a Hospice Volunteer for more than 15 years, while helping people through their grief.
Barbara is survived by her sons Donald U. Dieffenbach and daughter-in-law Chandra, David Dieffenbach and daughter-in-law Michelle. Daughter Jayna Combs, son-in-law Sam, sister Susie Delany (Phil), and brother Tom Burton. Her grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews, her beloved dog, Poppy, and many treasured friends. She is also survived by the family of Vern Cobb (her partner for 15 years) who were of great help to Barb through the years. Barbara was preceded in death by her husband Don Dieffenbach, her parents, Tom and Opal Burton, her brother Richard Burton, and her partner, Vern Cobb, who passed away several years ago.
A Visitation/ Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, January 19, 2019 at 10:00 A.M. at Niswonger-Reynolds Funeral Home, 105 NW Irving Avenue, Bend, Oregon 97703. Followed by a Graveside Service at Greenwood Cemetery, Bend, Oregon. Reception will take place at 3:00 P.M. at Romaine Village Clubhouse, 19940 Mahogany Street, Bend, Oregon. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Hospice of Central Oregon.