A Sad Farewell To Old Friends
By Crena Arora
HOW DOES one write about friends, colleagues and above all one's boss? Especially a boss with so many facets to his character.
My association with James and Willi Barton comes from my days at the Landour Community Hospital (1970) when they had come up to Mussoorie with their two young sons -- Nicky and Jeremy. Those were the days when LCH was known far and wide with the best of doctors, consultants, nurses, para-medical, office staff etc. - a place of dedicated workers!!
Patients who registered at LCH filled in a column in which one had to list their missions - that is how I came to know about their mission, where it was located in India, and of course Ireland.
James and Willi were both dedicated teachers, and whenever students in Chemistry and German needed help, they were always ready to go the extra mile with them. James even taught maths and he was thorough in this too - his teaching and administrative duties cannot be faulted.
The Bartons joined Woodstock in 1977 from Wilson College, Bombay where Dr Barton taught Chemistry from 1969-77. He has been instrumental in getting our students admitted in four prestigious colleges in Bombay viz. Wilson, St. Xaviers, Sophia and Syndenham as he still maintains his connections. He even went all the way to Calcutta, so our students got recognition in the universities there. He also went on recruitment drives to Nepal and the Gulf States so our student enrollment didn't fall.
In all spheres of academics James Barton - as Chemistry and Maths teacher, Head of the Science Department, Headmaster, H.S. Co-ordinator and lastly as Vice-Principal Academics, fitted all the roles assigned to him. His professional expertise, spiritual leadership, concern for staff, students and employees will be remembered for many years to come.
(cont. on page 8) BARTON (cont. from page 1)
For staff, Willi began aerobics and later students joined too and everyone had fun. What about the senior girls hockey? Whatever Willi did was professional - Junior/Senior Banquet, Graduation, Activity Week, class activities etc.
One mustn't forget the K-Groups, the FMBS', the coffee break snacks and of course the hospitality and parenting to so many students. Wherever the need arose, they came to the rescue.
It has been my pleasure to know and work with both Dr. and Mrs. Barton. Very few have that privilege and as one grows older we look back on our memories, and thank God that He has richly blessed us. As his secretary, the rapport we had was wonderful. When they became grandparents we enjoyed having something more in common. As grand parents we were an elite band! At our June sales James enjoyed being auctioneer and both bad their share of "dunking" when their tenth grade were in charge of the carnival.
There is "no place like home" and the Bartons after a six month furlough will return to make their home in Goa and of course visit Ireland as usual, from time to time, as they have grown to love India, as so many do. So we'll keep in touch, after all "old is gold".
Back to the top.