Barbara Karen Jacobson Dean
78, Tucson AZ, passed away January 29, 2014 after a valiant struggle with a serious illness. Born in Fargo, ND in 1935 to Johanna B. Jacobson and John O. Jacobson, she grew up in Ypsilanti, MI and graduated in 1953 as valedictorian from Ypsilanti High School. During high school and beyond, she was involved in the drum and bugle corps, took part in class plays and civic theater, excelled at the piano, and sang in the church choir. She graduated in 1957 from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor's Degree in English Education and a minor in Theatre. In 1956, she married Frederick S. Dean and in 1958, began her career as a high school English teacher in Ann Arbor. In 1962, they moved to Tucson where she taught English and was also a reading specialist at Rincon High School until she retired in 1990. She was an active member of the TEA, AEA, NEA, and the Pima County Democratic Party. She also belonged to the Delta Kappa Gamma Society (Xi Chapter), an organization dedicated to promoting the personal growth of women educators and excellence in education. After retirement, she enjoyed a variety of activities, including ghost town tours throughout the Southwest and travels to the Caribbean, Europe, Alaska, and Norway. A supporting patron of the arts, she regularly attended operatic, ballet, theater, and musical productions. Passionate about lifelong learning, she was also an avid reader and expert at both the NY Times Crossword puzzle and Sudoku. When not spending time with her beloved grandchildren, Barbara enjoyed socializing with the Gay Señoritas and a close-knit group of Rincon's retired English teachers. Barbara is survived by daughter, Karen Bannon of Flagstaff; son, Steve (Patty) of Tucson; daughter, Lauren Magnanimo (Frank) of Porter Ranch, CA; her brother, Jack Jacobson of Clinton, MI; brother and sister-in-law, Richard and Carol Jacobson of Tucson; grandsons, Jon Bannon (Emily), James Dean; Gianluca and Alessandro Magnanimo; granddaughters, Erin Bannon, Melissa and Allison Dean, Liliana and Tessa Magnanimo; nieces, nephews and many cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Fred (2007) and sister, Audrey (1979). Barbara left a priceless legacy to her children, grandchildren, friends and remaining relatives: education is paramount to success; reading is fundamental to the soul; life is not complete without music and the arts; and, most importantly, one should always support family and community. A celebration of her life for friends and family will take place in March. In lieu of flowers and to honor Barbara's very generous and giving nature, please consider donating in her name to a Tucson organization supporting the Arts or Education, Special Olympics, the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center, the International Rett Syndrome Foundation, or the Tucson League of Women Voters. Arrangements by BRING'S BROADWAY CHAPEL.