Barbara (Bray) Hastings

Barbara Ruth Hastings (nee Bray), age 85, left this earthly plane Sunday, November 19, 2017. The cause was a massive stroke.

Barbara's final gift was to donate her body to medical school so the physicians-in-training could learn from it. Her family will have a memorial at the time her ashes are returned in 12-18 months.

Barbara was born April 3, 1932 in Des Moines to Chalmer and Ruth Bray. She spent her 85 years positively impacting many lives. She was a great mother to five children, as well as a devoted military wife who moved her family in service to this nation seven times in 20 years. She was a caring friend and a compassionate, skilled Registered Nurse. Barbara was awarded the Meritorious Service Medical twice during her time in government service at the Fort Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital.

Barbara graduated from Iowa Methodist School of Nursing in 1953 and worked as a nurse in ICU/CCU, maternity and emergency wards, and taught for the American Red Cross. After her retirement, Barbara volunteered for Habitat for Humanity and was an election polling place worker. Her interests were social justice and caring for the environment. She was brave enough to para-sail off the Remarkables Mountains in New Zealand (at age 70), take college classes (and get A+ grades) and also get her Emergency Medical Technician-Ambulance (EMT) certification after her children left home. She traveled to Iceland the week before her death - walked on a glacier, saw the Northern Lights and floated in geothermal pools.

Her husband, Ronald Dale Hastings, an artist and career Navy Non-Commissioned Officer, predeceased her in 1996. She is survived by her five children; 10 grandchildren; six (soon to be seven) great-grandchildren and one child for whom she served as a governess.

Earlier in life, Barbara had elected to have no heroic medical measures if she had a non-recoverable illness. Her family cared for her at home with the help of wonderful hospice nurses and her physicians.

A special thanks to her physicians, Dr. Daly, Dr. Koreckij and Dr. Elliot, and their nursing staff for care over the years. They allowed her the freedom to be actively involved in her own care and this added to her quality of life. The family also wishes to express an incredibly deep gratitude to University Medical Emergency Department and Compassas Hospice nurses.

Bye-Bye, Miss American Pie. We loved you. Memorial gifts may be sent to the Columbia Food Bank in Columbia, MO.

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