Thomas Barnard

Obituary of Thomas Barnard

Thomas Albert Barnard, age 75 of Carrollton died September 6, 2017 at Memorial Medical Center in Springfield.  He was born October 22, 1941 in Greenfield, the son of Robert L. and Sarah A. Starkey Barnard. He married Connie Steinacher June 15, 1963 in Carrollton and she survives.

Also surviving is a son, Christopher (Frances) Barnard of carrollton, two daughters, Tina (Kevin) Allen of athens Il, Sherry (Philip) Barnard of pittsburgh pa, ten grandchildren, Melissa Barnard, Thomas Barnard, Elisabeth Schenk, Cherish Langheim, Gabe Hart, Kyle Allen, Daniel Snow, Maysa Snow, Noah Snow, and Hannah Snow, eight great grandchildren, one sister, Marjorie Kimbro of Appelton, WI, and one brother, David Barnard of Tremont IL. He was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, Donald and Gary Barnard.

Tom was a paraplegic, confined to a wheelchair at the age of 18 due to an automobile accident. He overcame his disability and accomplished many wonderful things in his life that he and his family are very proud of. Tom worked for the State of Illinois Department of Transportation in the Division of Traffic Safety in Springfield for 32 years. He was a computer programmer/Analyst and retired as a Unit Chief of Traffic Safety on December 31, 2000. While working at IDOT, he attended night classes at Lincoln Land Community College where he earned his Associates in General Education. After attending LLCC, he also earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Arts and a Master of Arts degree at the University of Illinois, Springfield. He has displayed his paintings and drawings in various art competitions in and around Springfield and won several awards. He was President of the Springfield Chess Club, serving in that position for several years between 1970 and 1985. He was certified by the United States Chess Federation as a chess tournament, organizer/director and organized and directed many tournaments. He held an above average rating as a chess competitor with the USCF. In 1975 and 1976 he participated in regional wheelchair track and field events at SIU in Carbondale, IL and U of I in Champaign, IL. He represented the Springfield Spoke Jockeys and won several gold, silver and bronze medals in shot put, discus and javelin throwing plus a variety of other wheelchair events. They lived in Auburn for 31 years and moved back to Carrollton in 2002 after retiring.  He enjoyed being outdoors, loved animals, especially hummingbirds, fishing, shooting, playing poker, playing card games, board games, and playing video games but most of all he loved spending time with his family.

Funeral services will be held 10:00 a.m. Monday, September 11, 2017 at Airsman-Hires Funeral Home in Carrollton with burial to follow in Hardin Cemetery east of Carrollton. Visitation will be held Sunday from 1-4 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to the Spinal Cord Society or St. John’s Church. Condolences may be left online at www.airsman-hires.com