In memoriam: Missionary emeritus Barbara Hunter, 1933-2023

Barbara Hunter, 1933-2023
IMB Photo

Barbara Hunter, an International Mission Board missionary emeritus who shared the gospel in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Kenya, Botswana, Tanzania and Ethiopia, died Feb. 26, 2023. She was 89.

Barbara was born July 10, 1933, in Newell, North Carolina, to the late Thomas Bryan and Ethel Collier Barnes. She attended Mars Hill College (now Mars Hill University) near Asheville, North Carolina, and El Paso Community College in El Paso, Texas.

She and her husband, Bob, were married for 69 years. She was a devoted wife serving alongside Bob in all areas of life. She was a proud military wife with a servant’s heart; moving many times during Bob’s military career making their home wherever they served. This included time in Puerto Rico, Turkey, Las Vegas, Denver and Florida, as well as other places.

“Barbara and I have sought to be within God’s will and are convinced that my military service has been a most important part of his will for us,” her husband wrote when seeking appointment with the Foreign Mission Board (now International Mission Board). In 1978, the FMB appointed Barbara and Robert missionaries to Tanzania. They served for more than 20 years in eastern and southern Africa.

After retiring from the IMB, they continued to serve as volunteers. Barbara was active in the South Carolina Women’s Missionary Union – frequently speaking to promote mission work.

She is survived by her husband of 69 years; her children, Wayne Cordell Hunter (Linda), Robert Bryan Hunter (Debbie), and Judith Anne Nicholson (Richard); one sister-in-law; seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

A funeral service was held March 9, at Thomas McAfee Funeral Homes, Northwest, in Greenville, South Carolina, with burial in Greenville Memorial Gardens.

Read an obituary here.