Bobby J. Barker, 74, of Wendell, passed away at the Twin Falls Care Center in Twin Falls on Tuesday, April 18, 2017. Services will be at Rost Funeral Home, McMurtrey Chapel, in Mountain Home, on Friday, April 21, 2017, with a viewing at 11:30 a.m. and funeral services at 1 p.m. Burial with military honors will follow at Mountain View Cemetery, in Mountain Home.
Bob was born April 16, 1943, to Clifford and Rose Barker, in Harrison, Ark. During his early years, Bob worked at Jordonís Buffalo Ranch, located in the panhandle of Oklahoma. He learned to handle horses and life lessons from the old hands at the ranch.
In the mid 1950s, Bobby Joe and his mother, Rose, relocated in Jerome, Idaho. At the age of 16, Bob enlisted in the U.S. Army ó something he would never forget and often said that he would do over again if ever given the chance. He attended boot camp at Fort Ord in California, breezing through his basic training as he knew how to handle himself from prior jobs such as the one in Oklahoma.
Fort Knox, Ky., was his next home away from home, leaving from there to his next posting in Germany, where he served for three years. While in Germany, he met his first wife, Heidi.
They were married and had two children, Robert and Anna-Christine, returning with them to the States at the end of his tour. Bob, not being one to sit still, re-enlisted and was sent to Vietnam for a second tour, where he was attached to an Armored Infantry Division, starting out as a tank driver then being promoted to the rank of sergeant and a tank commander.
Bob and Heidi later separated while he was on his second tour, and their children finished schooling in Filer, Idaho, before setting out to make their way in the world.
Following his Honorable Discharge and being awarded the Purple Heart for injuries sustained in combat, Bob spent many years exploring this nation behind the wheel of an 18-wheeler.
Bobby Joe later met Barbara Nelson in the spring of 1989, whom he later married. Bob and Barbara enjoyed their years together, watching grandchildren grow and meeting the great grandchildren as they came into their lives.
Bob is survived by his wife, Barbara of Wendell; his sons, David Nelson of Kimberly, Shane Barker of Wisconsin and Robert Andreason of Boise; his daughter, Anna and her husband, John Pons of Burley; his brother, Tom Pegram of Crouch; his sisters, Margaret Bitz of Emmett, Rose Crowder of Horseshoe Bend and Sue Wood of Mountain Home.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister, Judy, and his brother, David.
The family suggests donations in Bobís memory be sent to a favorite charity.