Our dear husband, father and grandfather, Joseph Andrew Barfuss, died on May 29, 2021 at his home in Midvale, Utah. He lived seven months shy of a century.
Joseph was born in Paris, Idaho on February 11, 1922, to Andrew and Louise (Stocker) Barfuss. He married LaRue Barton in the Salt Lake Temple on September 1, 1948. She died August 6, 1973 at the age of 48. He married Sarah (Sally) Olsen in the Salt Lake Temple on June 27, 1977.
He served in the South Pacific during World War II as a Marine where he participated in the bloody battle to capture the island of Tarawa. He then served as a missionary in the Southern States Mission where he met LaRue Barton, whom he later married. He earned a degree in elementary education from Utah State University and a master’s degree in education administration from Brigham Young University. He served for 12 years as a schoolteacher and 20 years as the principal at Copperton, Bell View and Majestic Elementary schools in the Jordan School District where he nurtured his faculty, staff and students in a personal and loving way.
He was a faithful life-long Latter-day Saint. He served as a bishop, a temple worker in both the Salt Lake and Jordan River temples and in many other church assignments. He and Sally served as missionaries in the Midvale Utah North Stake and the Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Mission. He taught seminary at Jordan High School for five years. His long life of faithful service to everyone around him became a living testimony of his faith in the Savior Jesus Christ.
He was a devoted father and husband. His large extended family knew he was always there to cheer them on and support them. His spontaneous personal ‘interviews’ were uplifting and engaging. He wanted to know everything about your life and was anxious to do what he could to make it better. His positivity and love knew no bounds. He willingly endured the challenges of advancing age with the mantra; ‘Accentuate the positive; eliminate the negative.’ When asked what he had been doing lately, he would often reply; ‘I have been very busy, counting my blessings.’ He enjoyed doing the two-step in the kitchen with anyone who was willing to join him.
He is survived by his devoted wife of 44 years, Sally, five children, Heidi Wasden (Carl), South Jordan; Julie Beck (Ray), Murray; Andy (Julie), Farmington; Stacie Lythgoe (Kevin), Phoenix, Arizona; and Jodie Curtis (Kitt), Salt Lake City; 33 grandchildren (the Wilfardos) and 62 great-grandchildren (the Wilfies). He was preceded in death by his first wife, LaRue Barton, his son Larry Barfuss (Annette), grandson (Benjamin Barfuss), great-grandson (Jack Tidwell), and by his parents (Andrew and Louise Stocker Barfuss) and all six of his siblings Thelma Jenson (Mylan), Helen Iverson (Kenneth), Victor (Mary), LaVaughn (Shirley), Raymond (Ruby), and Louis (Josephine).
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 5, 2021, at the Midvale 2nd Ward LDS chapel, 97 West 7500 South, Midvale. Friends may visit at the chapel Friday, June 4, 2021 from 6-8 p.m. and on Saturday from 9:30-10:30 a.m. prior to the funeral. The funeral will also be broadcast at http://mywebcast.churchofjesuschrist.org/midvaleutahnorthstake. Burial, Midvale City Cemetery.
We want to thank our wonderful mom who tirelessly and expertly cared for our dad for many years. We are grateful for the many kindnesses shown by loving neighbors and friends and deeply appreciate the excellent care provided by Haley and Kurtis and their co-workers at Inspiration Home Health & Hospice and from Lara at Reflective Home Care.
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