Memorial service set Thursday for City Hall reporter
BY Staff Reports
Sunday, January 13, 2013
1/13/13 at 5:39 AM
A memorial service for Tulsa World City Hall reporter Brian Barber has been set for 10:30 a.m. Thursday at Redeemer Covenant Church, 5415 E. 101st St., under the direction of Moore's Southlawn Funeral Home.
Barber, 39, died Wednesday from complications related to two heart transplants.
Barber had his first transplant in 2000, when he was 26, and the second in 2005.
To honor Barber, city councilors and Mayor Dewey Bartlett agreed last week to name the City Council chambers' media area after him.
A graduate of Tulsa's Memorial High School who held a bachelor's degree from the University of South Dakota, Barber joined the Tulsa World as a night police reporter in 1996. He later worked as a general assignment reporter before moving to the City Hall beat in 2004.
As a reporter, Barber wrote simply and directly and was known for his accuracy, clarity and fairness, as the mayor and multiple city councilors noted in remembering him.
Barber provided comprehensive reporting on the construction and opening of Tulsa's downtown arena and the contentious conversion of the city's trash service to a volume-based system that included recycling.
He won many journalism awards for his work, including a shared one from The Associated Press in 2011 for coverage of Tulsa city officials' efforts to avoid police and firefighter layoffs during the economic downturn.
He also was honored by the AP in 2004 for his reporting on RxDepot, a Tulsa-based business that helped Americans buy cheaper prescription drugs from Canadian pharmacies.
Because of ongoing complications from his transplants and cardiomyopathy, a genetic heart condition that had made them necessary, Barber never had it easy.
But he covered his beat thoroughly, with wit and aplomb, and was beloved by both colleagues and his story subjects alike.
Barber's survivors include his parents, Larry and Janice Barber of Bixby; a sister, Monica Barber of Edmond; and a grandmother, Wanda DuFour of Tulsa.
Friends are contributing to LifeShare Transplant Donor Services of Oklahoma or to the American Heart Association.
Brian Barber: He covered his beat thoroughly, with wit and aplomb.