Margaret M. Barbero

Margaret M. Barbero of Columbia loved gardening.

“It was a real passion in her life,” Peter Barbero, her son, said.

In addition to gardening in her own garden and those of some of her neighbors, she volunteered her skills at various places around Columbia, including The Wardrobe and the Ronald McDonald House, where she gardened for more than 20 years.

She enjoyed working with perennials, and her favorites included day lilies and irises.

Mrs. Barbero died Friday, Feb. 4, 2011, at her home in Columbia. She was 85.

She was born Dec. 16, 1925, in Girardville, Pa., to John and Florence Goff. The family moved to Philadelphia when she was in high school.

Mrs. Barbero graduated from a nursing program at the University of Pennsylvania.

She married Giulio Barbero on May 31, 1947. They raised their six children in Media, Pa., until the family moved to Columbia in 1972.

Mrs. Barbero was a devout Catholic and a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Columbia. She enjoyed her Bible study and prayer group.

She volunteered for many organizations, including serving as a Pink Lady for more than 10 years at University Hospital, where her husband worked. She was a generous woman, Peter Barbero said, and gave to causes such as the Missouri Symphony Society and various Catholic organizations.

Mrs. Barbero is survived by her children, Peter Barbero of Charleston, S.C., Mary Ferguson of Aston, Pa., Claudia Galbraith of Holts Summit and David Barbero of Columbia; a sister, Ann Burden, of Silver Springs, Md.; 20 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Her husband; two sons, Paul Barbero and Christopher Barbero; a brother, John Goff; two sisters, Katherine Goff and Florence Carrier; and a granddaughter, Clare Barbero, died earlier.

Visitation will be at 10 a.m. Friday at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 1115 Locust St., in Columbia. Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m, and a burial service will follow.

Memorial contributions may be sent to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Gateway Chapter, 10801 Pear Tree Lane, Suite 110, St. Ann, MO 63074.