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Shelter Island Reporter obituary: Barbara Griffing Wagner

Barbara Griffing Wagner
Barbara Griffing Wagner

Barbara Griffing Wagner, 80, passed away peacefully in Glastonbury, Connecticut on November 4, 2017.

She was surrounded by loved ones from near and far.

She was predeceased by her parents, Scudder and Mildred Griffing, formerly of Shelter Island, and her husband, Warren Wagner, whom she married on Shelter Island, on December 28, 1960.

Barbara was born in Harrisonburg, Virginia on May 17, 1937. She graduated from Shelter Island High School in 1955 and earned a degree in education with a concentration in music from Randolph-Macon College at its Lynchburg, Virginia campus and the University of Michigan in 1959.

She worked many years as a school teacher and piano teacher in Darien, Connecticut and as an administrative assistant at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in New Canaan, Connecticut before retiring to Fearrington Village in Pittsboro, North Carolina in 1999 where she stayed until returning to Connecticut in 2012.

Barbara had a rare talent for music, her family said, adding that listening to her play the piano was an unforgettable experience. She also enjoyed sports and was a big fan of the Mets, Michigan football and Duke basketball.

Most of all, her family said, she enjoyed watching her children play and rarely missed a chance to cheer them on from the stands for hundreds of tennis, baseball, soccer, basketball and volleyball games as well as at many musical performances.

Barbara is dearly remembered by her four children, Karen (Paul) Mayer of Kailua, Hawaii, Lauren (Brian) Furtak of Glastonbury, Kent Wagner of Charleston, South Carolina, and Alana (Cristiano) Guerra of Washington, D.C.; her nine grandchildren; her sister Mary (Jim) Spindler; and by many friends and relatives who knew and loved her.

Barbara will be missed, but she will be forever with us, her family said, adding that they will always feel her music and hear her cheering us on.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 14 at 2 p.m. at the Shelter Island Presbyterian Church followed by a burial and reception at the church.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Lewy Body Dementia Foundation, 912 Killian Hill Road, S.W., Lilburn, GA 30047.