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Barbara Ann Ratcliff

Barbara Ann Ratcliff was born June 16, 1940 in Everett, Washington and died July 3, 2020 at her home in Seattle. She was predeceased by her parents, Earl Dennis Ratcliff and Mary Alice Ratcliff, and by her brother, Richard Earl Ratcliff.

In the course of her life she worked a number of jobs: a case worker for 5 years, a legal assistant for 10 years, and a property manager for 25 years. Her teaching career was cut short when she was fired for refusing to lead her students in the Pledge of Allegiance, believing that “liberty and justice for all” was not truthful for her largely Portuguese students. Barbara’s interests were wide-ranging and passionate, many of them influenced by her education as an anthropologist. She conducted extensive research on the Yakama tribe and was in the process of writing a book on the devastating impact of building a railroad on tribal lands.  Her research was thorough, unique, and from hundreds of primary sources, leading to poignant stories of the losses endured by tribal members. She would do genealogical research for anyone who asked and gather more information than the person could use!

Barbara was in the Peace Corps in Somalia in 1964-66, a time she recalled with great fondness and which inspired her ever-growing collection of bells and camels. She remained involved with Somalian news as an active member of the Anglo-Somalia Society, and remained connected to her many Peace Corps friends. She was a devotee of anything British, but especially British TV and novels.

She dearly loved Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, had several, and encouraged her brother to add one to his family. She leaves a nephew and niece, Charles and Emily Ratcliff, a sister-in-law, Kathryn Ratcliff, and cousins, including Robyn Smith, Wayne Ratcliff, Sharon Shining, Stan Ratcliff, Mickey Ratcliff, Darryl Ratcliff, and Melvin Ratcliff.


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