BARRIE, Alice of Orion Township; passed away August 2, 2019. Preceded in death by her husband Woody and her siblings Albert Bates, Samuel Bates and Pearl Pennybacker; loving mother of W. Lee (Sharon) Barrie, Sandy Lawrence and Gary (Joanne) Barrie; beloved grandma of Sam (Nancy), Adam (Trish), Gretchen (Pete), Amy (Johnathon), Josh, Jeff (Patti), Julie (Joe), Jodi (John), Jerry (Becky), Laura (Matt), Sarah (Brian), Zach and Ida (Pat); great grandma of 27; great-great grandma of 6 granddaughters.
Alice lived on a farm in Spratt, Michigan just north of Hillman. She had two brothers and a sister. When Alice was about 3 years old, her mom had TB and had to stay in a tent outside to get fresh air. She stayed in the tent for one year and cured herself. At that time, many people were dying from TB. They then moved to Montmorency County, Turtle Lake, Michigan which was 15 miles from Hillman. She enjoyed attending school in Hillman. She walked 4 miles each way with her two brothers, Sam and Albert, and her sister, Pearl. During the winter months, Albert sometimes carried Pearl because the snow was deep, and her legs were too short. Her dad, Samuel, made them skis so they could ski to school. They had an old horse and Alice’s mom, Myrtle, sometimes took them to school on a horse drawn sleigh. One year for Christmas, her dad made them little chairs out of 2 x 6’s. They always had a Christmas tree, and Alice enjoyed decorating it. They sang Christmas songs at school, and she participated in the Christmas programs.
Mom’s dad worked at a fish hatchery in Turtle Lake. He walked to work instead of taking the horse. They didn’t attend church because the nearest church was 15 miles away. They lived off their garden vegetables and hunted animals. They also made their own butter. Alice liked apple pie the most! Her mom had a pedal sewing machine and made her clothes and coats. She made dresses out of pretty flour sacks. They went to Alpena twice a year to go grocery shopping and purchase other goods or supplies. The neighbor had a horse and buggy. Alice recalled a time they took her into town to get the first pair of shoes she could remember. These shoes were black patent on the bottom with cream on top. Alice got her driver’s license when she was 14 years old. She used her dad’s truck to go get gas at a local gas station. When she was in high school living in Turtle Lake, she used the truck to drive herself and other girls 15 miles to school in Hillman. Each of the girls gave $1.00 a week to pay for gas. Alice never had a driving ticket her whole life.
Alice met Woody, George Woodrow Barrie, at Hillman High School when she was 15, and they began to date. She took a year off from school to work when she was 16. The family moved to Lansing, Michigan where her father was the caretaker at a park. He helped maintain the reserve. She graduated Valedictorian from Everett High School in Lansing in 1939.
Woody and Alice got married at her parents’ home in Lansing on November 30th, 1939. She wore a white dress, veil, and high heels. Warren Barrie and her sister, Pearl, stood up as witnesses. Shortly thereafter, they moved to Pontiac where they raised their three children, Lee, Sandy, and Gary. They had their first telephone in 1943. Alice remembered going years without a washing machine. They finally purchased one when Sandy was a baby. As a child, Alice never had a bike. After getting married, she finally got a bike. Unfortunately, she fell off and broke her collar bone. Woody then sold her bike. In 1950, Alice began working at National Twist Drill in Rochester and started at $1.35 per hour. In 1957 the entire family was baptized and joined the St. John’s Lutheran Church in Pontiac. Woody spent most of his career in Clarkston as a teacher, principal, and assistant superintendent. He retired in 1981 after having a heart attack. After 31 years, Alice also retired in 1981.
In 1972, they moved to Orion Twp., Michigan where they lived out the rest of their lives. It wasn’t difficult staying busy after retirement! They enjoyed hunting and fishing together, tended two huge vegetable gardens freezing and canning much of what they grew, walking the mall & annually walking the Mackinaw Bridge, tapping maple trees to make syrup, camping, and traveling. Woody and Alice traveled to all 50 states and many other places (Scotland, England & Wales, a Caribbean cruise, Mexico, Toronto, Montreal & Quebec City, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edwards Island). For one of their trips, they camped all through Alaska down to Washington, Oregon, and California. Unfortunately, Woody passed away in April of 2003 at the age of 86. In 2007, her daughter, Sandy, moved in with her.
Alice remained very active and healthy continuing the hunting, fishing, gardening, canning, walking the mall & the Mackinaw Bridge (until she was 96 years old), maintaining her home, cutting the grass, knitting and crocheting. She made dresses for many family members (Homecoming, Prom, Bridesmaid, and even a wedding dress). She loved caring for a variety of flowers. Her favorite flower was the Iris. She had multiple rows of all colors. She also enjoyed watching and feeding the birds. Her favorite bird was the Cardinal. Alice was very active in her church always baking something for luncheons, funeral dinners, etc. To ensure others could attend church, she would stop and give them a ride. In 2005, she was chosen “Woman of the Year” for her dedication and service. She loved to read and did so daily. She preferred natural medicine. Her motto was, “Stay away from prescription drugs and get outside and stay active!” This was the key to her long life. At 98 years of age, she was still going to work out at Silver Sneakers, walking the mall, and driving. She was caught riding her four-wheeler just 6 weeks ago! Now, she is dancing with Dad in Heaven. She was an amazing woman and will be greatly missed!
A funeral service honoring Alice’s life was held on Wednesday, August 7, 2019 at St. Trinity Lutheran Church, Clarkston. Interment at White Chapel Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital or a hospice of your choice.
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