Cover photo for Barbara J. (Olson)  Robare's Obituary
1935 Barbara 2021

Barbara J. (Olson) Robare

February 27, 1935 — November 29, 2021


Barbara “Barb” J. Robare, 86, Munising, MI, passed away on Monday, November 29, 2021, with her sister (and best friend) Karen at her side, at her sister’s home in Duluth, MN following a short illness and under the care of Hospice.  Barb was born on February 27, 1935 in Munising to the late Nels and Ellen (Virta) Olson. Barb was a lifelong resident of Munising, where she attended school, worked and made her home on Nestor St. for over 55 years.  Barb retired from the Kimberly-Clark Munising Paper Mill in February 1990 with over 35 years of employment where she worked in the finishing room as a core cutter technician. Barb married Shirl Robare at Sacred Heart Church on May 19, 1956.  They were married for over 50 years when Shirl preceded her in death on June 1, 2006.

Barb was fun, caring and generous.  She loved to dance, cook and feed people. Anyone who stopped by was treated to everything she had to eat or drink in the refrigerator.  She always took time to make sure friends and family that were homebound, in the Manor or at Tendercare had a visitor. Barb was an active member of the Funeral Luncheon Committee of Sacred Heart Church for many years. And besides cooking for funerals, she was invited to almost every wedding, birthday or graduation in town and usually gave more than she could afford. Barb took an avid interest in the lives of her friends, their kids, and their kids’ kids. Many of her nieces and nephews would call Aunt Barb, even before their parents, if they got in trouble during their growing up years. And every kid in the neighborhood knew where the best candy was on Halloween.  Barb never missed a chance to tease a teenager about their dating status.  Her many travel adventures with friends and family were cherished memories and Barb really liked to go “up town” to meet friends for coffee. She was an avid Lions fan and loved the friendly rivalries with family and neighbors.

The family would like to thank all of Barb’s neighbors for their help and friendship over the years.  Their generosity helped her maintain an independent lifestyle in her own home for so long.  Almost daily, Kathy Salow brought healthy home cooked meals, Willie Peters made himself available as a handyman, and Kay and Wayne Dausey checked on her.  And Cindy Ryan was her only ally on football Sunday.  As Lions fans, they stuck together.

Barb is survived by her sister - Karen Schmidtman of Munising, MI and Duluth, MN; half-brother - Terry (Donna) Olson; step-siblings -  Jerry (Nancy) Pracey, Carolyn (David) Olson; and sister in law -  Beryl (Punk) O’Boyle.   A very special Aunt Barb is survived by her 17 nieces and nephews - Carl (Jackie) Schmidtman, Dave (April) Schmidtman , Barb (Phil) Mainella, Keith Olson, Connie (Don) Gatiss, John Guadagnoli Jr., Janet Falco, Jim (Theresa) Guadagnoli, JoAnne Johnson, Debra Cromell, Mike (Jill) Pawielski, Roxane Pawielski, Steve (Karen) Pawielski, Mark (Yolonda) Pawielski, Beryl Davis, Gordy (Stephanie) Robare, and Tim (Karen Hautamaki) Robare.  She is also survived by over 35 great and 15 great-great nieces and nephews.

Barb was preceded in death by her parents, husband Shirl , sisters Patsy Guadagnoli, Nancy Pawielski, brother Dick Olson, in laws Chester Pawielski, David Schmidtman, Doris Olson and Gordon (Duda) and Donna Robare.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Barbara J. (Olson) Robare, please visit our flower store.


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