Barbara Jo Northup, 62 years of age and a longtime Harborite, died after a short illness on Wednesday, October 10, 2012, at Grays Harbor Community Hospital in Aberdeen, Washington. She was born on October 2, 1950, in Port Angeles, Washington, to Walter W. “Bill” and Margaret R. “Peggy” (McClure) Van Heuveln.
She lived in Port Angeles until 1959 when her family moved to Kalaloch. She attended Queets-Clearwater School, then graduated from Forks High School in 1968. She attended Western Washington University for about two years, later earning a B.A. degree in Psychological Counseling from the Evergreen State College in 1985 and a M.A. degree in Counseling and Community Psychology from Saint Martins College in 1992.
Barbara Jo Van Heuveln married Thomas John Northup on December 27, 1969, at the Lake Quinault Lodge. They resided at La Conner, Washington from 1970 to 1973, then moved to Grays Harbor, living in Central Park for 37 years. In 1989, the couple bought an old house at Lake Quinault which they demolished in 2009 to construct their present family home that they moved into a year ago.
In 1981, Barbara volunteered with the Evergreen Counseling Center’s Crisis Line, which inspired her to finish her college degree. She then worked at Evergreen Counseling for eight years. While working there and pursuing her Masters Degree, she also worked as an intern for the Quinault Indian Nation’s mental health program. This led to eight years of employment with the Nation’s Roger Saux Counseling Center in Taholah, largely as a roving counselor from Grays Harbor to Hoh River. Barbara also contracted with the Lake Quinault School District and the Hoh River Indian Tribe.
At some point during this time she discovered her true passion was in working with school children. This led to her working as a mental health counselor in the Taholah and Queets-Clearwater Schools from 2001 until her passing. A deeply loving and caring person, Barbara touched and enriched hundreds of lives both in her professional career and her personal life. She especially loved the students in the schools where she worked.
Barb and Tom traveled extensively in the United States, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Denmark and the British Isles. She especially enjoyed her trips to Ireland, the source of most of her ancestry. Barbara was an expert cook and home decorator. In her limited spare time she also loved gardening, photographing the area’s natural beauty, sea kayaking, hiking, camping, beachcombing, reading (especially British mysteries), calligraphy, writing and many types of music, but especially Irish, classic rock, folk and jazz.
Barbara was not a religious person, but was deeply spiritual and respected every person’s religious convictions.
Barbara is survived by her husband, Thomas J. Northup of Amanda Park, Washington; her son and daughter-in-law, Robert and Victoria (Brazil) Northup; her daughter, Angeline Northup; her grandson, Jory Northup, all of Seattle; and many other relatives.
The family requests donations be sent to the Lake Quinault Volunteer Fire Department Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 23, Amanda Park, Washington 98526 or to any local P.A.W.S.
An informal celebration of her life will be held at 1:00 p.m., on Saturday, October 27, 2012, at the Taholah School Gym in Taholah, Washington.
Cremation arrangements are by the Coleman Mortuary, 422 - 5th Street in Hoquiam, Washington.
Please take a few moments to record your thoughts for the family by signing the on-line register at http://www.colemanmortuary.net.