Barbara Wise Norman was born in Hayward, Wisconsin on June 26, 1933. The only child of Bernice Giblin and Scipio Wise, she was born into a large prominent family who resided in Sawyer County and Northwestern Wisconsin. Childhood with her devoted parents included winters in Mexico and Florida and travels across the United States. She attended Kemper Hall, an Episcopal boarding school in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where she was awarded the St. Mary’s Cross upon graduation. She then studied history at Wellesley College, graduating in 1955. Following jobs in Chicago in the advertising industry and at the University of Chicago Law School, Barbara married George Norman in 1957 and moved to Davenport, Iowa. There she bore and lovingly raised three children – Elizabeth, Nicholas and Margaret.
Throughout her adult life, Barbara served in responsible roles in the Episcopal Church and numerous community organizations, including P.E.O. Barbara’s creative talents were ever visible in the gardens and décor of her homes. Her generosity, loyalty and gracious spirit were ever visible in the lives of her family and friends.
In later years, Barbara and George moved to Orlando, Florida, where they enjoyed many happy years living down the street from their daughter Margaret and visited regularly by their other children and grandchildren. After George’s death in 2017, Barbara was kept company by Lennox – the last in a long line of Cocker Spaniels who had been her companions since childhood.
Fiercely loved by her family and friends, and admired by all who knew her, Barbara Wise Norman died peacefully in her own home on May 24th, 2022, surrounded by her family and memories of a long and happy life.
Barbara is survived by her children, Elizabeth, Nicholas and Margaret, and by her grandchildren, Winston, Henry, George and Natalie. Burial will take place in Hayward, Wisconsin in July.