October 25, 1930 ~ March 24, 2020
Born in: High Point, NC
Resided in: Asheville, NC
Barbara Lowe Crowder peacefully entered eternal life on March 24th after a long and meaningful life.
Barbara was born and raised in High Point, North Carolina. Daughter of Laura and George Lowe, and big sister to her brother “Buzz”, Barbara embraced the joys and opportunities she found in school, community, church and family. Throughout her life, she never wanted to miss a thing; she showed up and was fully present in all she did, and she urged others to do the same.
From an early age, her natural musical talent emerged as a rare and wonderful gift. Over her lifetime, she performed piano concerts, accompanied and directed countless church choirs, participated in musicals in her high school and college, taught piano in her home to hundreds of young students, and even enjoyed local fame playing “Snoopy” in “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown.” She instilled a love of music in her family, accompanying them in spirited sing-alongs of Broadway show tunes and hymns. Her innate talent was offered with joy and humility, making her a much sought-after participant in community programs and church services.
Barbara attended public schools in High Point and then went on to Winthrop College in Rock Hill, S.C., where she majored in music. In her college years, Barbara was a leader on campus as President of her class, her music sorority, and as the May Queen.
Married for sixty-three years to her high school sweetheart (and the person she had loved since elementary school), the late Rev. Richard J. Crowder, they lived a remarkable life built on their mutual respect and love for each other. Theirs was a beautiful partnership, so much so that almost every memory of her includes him by her side.
Barbara added warmth and strength to every community in which they lived, which included Charlotte, Boone, High Point, Gastonia, Lake Junaluska, NC and Asheville’s Givens Estates. The consummate minister’s spouse of that era, she embraced the people of each church Richard served, loving and serving them with enthusiasm, offering kitchen table advice to her husband on ways he might approach a situation, including her candid assessment of each sermon, giving her restless children a supervisory look from the choir lofts as they sat in the congregation, and somehow, having a roast and home cooked vegetables ready when everyone got home from church.
Together, they had three children, Ashley Crowder Stanley, the late Rick Crowder and Lynn Crowder Greer. Their children were blessed by their mother’s quiet strength, her appreciation of beauty, her unwavering support as they grew up and spread their wings, her hilarious sense of humor and the life lessons she taught about the importance of loyalty, faith, family and kindness.
Her legacy lives on in her children and her grandchildren Laura, Catherine, Jake, Jonathan, Julia, Will and Ben and great-grandchildren, Charlie and Joseph. She was a devoted Mimi who fiercely loved her grandchildren, always present at their activities and proud to be their cheerleader.
Along with her children and grandchildren, Barbara is survived by her brother Buzz Lowe, daughter-in-law, Franny Crowder, son-in-law Dr. Thomas Stanley, grandsons-in-law Andrew Ray and Brian Pietrosimone, granddaughter-in-law Jihyun Crowder, sisters-in-law Mildred Little and Janice Crowder, and many nieces and nephews.
Barbara will be remembered as one who made everyone she met feel at home, as a maker of beautiful music, a cook of memorable meals, a giggler until she cried, a grateful citizen, and a beloved mother, grandmother and friend.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial gifts be made either to Lake Junaluska Assembly, PO Box 67, Lake Junaluska, NC 28745 or to Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church’s Music Ministry, 1225 Chestnut Drive, High Point, NC 27262.
Barbara’s life will be celebrated in a memorial service at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church in High Point, NC and the inurnment of her ashes will be at the Memorial Chapel Columbarium at Lake Junaluska, NC, both at a future date.