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Howell Barbara Florence

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Fast Facts
Type of person Individual
Date of birth 1921
Place of birth Adelaide South Australia
Principal occupation Farming and home duties
Date of death 2019
Place of decease Balaklava "Mill Court" Aged care.

A Graceful life well lived. Barbara Florence Howell (nee Davies) October 31, 1921 – October 21, 2019 Barbara Florence Howell was born on October 31, 1921 in the Queen Home (now Queen Victoria Hospital) in Adelaide, the 11th of 12 children to Clarissa and Ernest Davies. Barbara lived on the family farm with her parents, six brothers and five sisters. She attended school at Grace Plains S.A., travelling to school via horse and cart. Once a week, Barbara attended elocution lessons in Mallala with other local girls. It was here she learnt to speak correctly, and over the years, gave recitals at various functions at Mallala and Grace Plains.

At age 15, she moved to live with the Clarke family in the South East to help look after their young children and remained for several years. During the years of World War two, 1941 - 1945, Barbara joined the local Mallala branch of the V.A.D. and worked at the R.A.A.F. No 6 Service Flying Training School at Mallala as a nurse volunteer, looking after the patients there.

While working in Mallala, Barbara met local farmer, Darrell Howell, and they married in 1948. Barbara helped out on the family farm, from milking cows and drafting sheep, to dressing chooks to eat, coping with mouse plagues and driving a truck loaded with hay. She kept active playing tennis at Grace Plains and golf at Owen.

Barbara was kept busy raising four daughters, Christine, Glenda, Ronda and Angela, and taught them all how to cook and sew – two of her favourite pastimes. As the girls grew up, Barbara was involved in the school welfare at Grace Plains and Mallala, along with volunteering at the hospital, church and other groups.

In her later years, Barbara was a keen bowler at Mallala, and became a national umpire, along with skipper and president of the club. She played in many local and state tournaments, and received her veteran’s badge.

Barbara was involved with the Mallala Museum, Ladies Methodist/Uniting Church Fellowship, Red Cross, Mallala RSL and S.A. Country Women's Association. When she was at home she enjoyed craft, floral arranging, gardening and cooking – famous for whipping up her specialty of a heart shaped sponge cake and sausage rolls for the family to enjoy for Sunday night’s tea! She had a strong Christian faith, and was an integral part of the Grace Plains Methodist Church, and later Mallala Uniting Church. Barbara welcomed grand and great grandchildren into her life over the years, and loved watching them grow and flourish.

She moved into Mill Court in 2016, and made new friends with both residents and the caring staff. A kind, generous and loving lady, Barbara passed away peacefully in Mill Court on October 21st 2019. Following her funeral service, Barbara was buried at Grace Plains cemetery.


  • Plains Producer per Louise Michael. (Article copied with kind permission from Louise Michael with information provided to her by the family)

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