Jessie Barbara Gaylor Murray died May 13, 2019 at Elmcroft Assisted Living in Muncie. The family thanks the staff for their care of Barbara over the last year.
Barbara was born March 20, 1916, to Wesley David Gaylor and Juvia Marie Yingling Gaylor in the home her father and grandfather built in Riverside, now part of Muncie, Indiana. Barbara graduated from Muncie High School in 1934. She attended Ball State, where she met Vincent “Mike” Murray. They were married in 1938 and celebrated 51 years of marriage before his death in 1989. They had three children: Kathleen, Patrick, and Margaret.
Barbara learned to work at a young age. She and her brother Robert “Bud” Gaylor sold magazines from a wagon as a child, and she counted money for the bus company in Muncie as a youth. Before her marriage Barbara was the on-site manager for the John R. Hines Bus Company in Bloomington from 1936-38. Barbara and her mother owned and operated a children’s clothing store, Young Ages, in Alexandria, when the family lived there in the 1950s. Over the years Barbara was always busy, working and volunteering.
The family moved to Muncie in 1959, where Barbara was active in St. Mary’s Catholic Church. She was a volunteer at Minnetrista for many years, where she worked in the museum store. From 1992-2015 she was proud to have a small business, knitting dishrags that were sold in the store. Barbara received the Helping Hand Award in 1998-99 from Minnetrista Cultural Center and Oakhurst Gardens. She was honored by Hillcroft Center in 1996 for her years of service. Barbara was an avid genealogist and was active in the Delaware County Historical Society, where she helped start the genealogy group, helped preserve records from the old Courthouse, helped map cemeteries in the county and served as a volunteer docent at the Moore-Youse House.
Barbara loved to travel, traveling across the country with her mother as a child and flying to Ireland three times with Mike, where they met some of his relatives. Fiercely independent, she took three cruises after Mike died. Over the years she visited family members across the country.
Barbara loved fiber arts, and her hands were seldom idle. She was a quilter and weaver, but she was best known for her knitting skills. She did many other crafts over the years. She had wideranging interests, including cars and riding horses. She had her own horse for many years.
Barbara is survived by her son, Patrick Murray (Glenda) of Bloomington, and her daughter, Margaret Murray Keesling of Muncie. She is also survived by six granddaughters: Frances Holliday, Amy Holliday Daniels (Jon), Elizabeth Holliday Moncado (David), Mary Holliday, Eleanor Keesling Wieseke (Trevor), and Katie Keesling. Other survivors include ten great grandchildren: Justin Duran, Marita Duran Birckenstaedt (Alex), Amanda Holliday, Ethan Voights, Stephen Voights, Murray Flowers, Landis Whatley, Emma Wieseke, Henry Wieseke, and Oliver Wieseke. Barbara is also survived by her niece, Jocelyn Gaylor Wilkinson; her nephew, Robert D. Gaylor; her former son-in-law Steve Holliday (Vera); her sister-in-law, Sue Gaylor; and numerous other Murray and Gaylor relatives.
Barbara was preceded in death by her parents, Wesley and Juvia Gaylor; her husband, Mike: her brother, Robert “Bud” Gaylor; her daughter Kathleen “Kate” Murray Holliday, and her grandson Michael Holliday.
Donations in her honor may be made to the Delaware County Historical Society Endowment Fund, 120 East Washington Street, or St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 2300 West Jackson Street, both in Muncie.
Visitation will be Monday, May 20 from 3-7 pm at Parson Mortuary, 801 West Adams. The Funeral Mass will be Tuesday, May 21 at 11 am at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, followed by interment in Beech Grove Cemetery.