Circleville - Wayne Barry Adams, 73, passed into eternal rest on Oct. 8, 2021 after more than a five-year battle with cancer.
Barry is survived by his loving wife, soul mate and best friend, Elizabeth MacLeish; his brother, Larry (Virginia) Adams, of Spofford, New Hampshire; his sister, Vickie (Mike) Anderson, of Kettering, Ohio; nieces, Kate Lynn (Todd) Shanks; Jeanette (Matt) D'Urso; Jennifer (John) Ostendorf; nephew, Matt (Karen) Adams; and many great-nieces and great-nephews.
Barry leaves behind a large contingent of friends he has remained close to — from elementary school to high school and college — to his very closest friends from his unit in the U.S. Naval Security Group at Kamiseya, Japan. He has also remained a close correspondent and friend with several professional colleagues, a number of former staff members from his higher education posts and many others who have served with him as a volunteer or active community member.
Barry Adams was born on Feb. 20, 1948, in Plain City, Ohio to Paul and Ella (Perry) Adams.
He graduated from Circleville High School in June 1966 and entered the U.S. Navy that same year.
Following his time in the Navy, he attended Ohio University, where he earned his BS in journalism and later, an MA in international affairs.
He returned to Circleville in 2009 when he retired.
Barry went directly into the U.S. Navy after high school in 1966. His service record includes assignments as a cryptologic technician and as a Navy Reserve Intelligence Officer on a Fleet Intelligence Rapid Support Team.
Often serving abroad, as well as stateside for special initiatives, as an officer, he was trained in image interpretation, area threat analysis and counterinsurgency. Following his initial four years of active Navy duty, where he was stationed in Japan, the Philippines and offshore waters of Vietnam, he served in the Navy Reserves for 18 years with assignments with NATO in Stuttgart, Germany, the US Navy Southern Command staff and US Navy Sixth Fleet response and reflagging of Kuwait shipping.
Barry had a distinguished higher education career at four public universities spanning nearly 40 years, including serving 10 years at his alma mater, Ohio University, as the director of alumni relations.
Later, he would go on to hold similar positions at the College of William and Mary in Virginia, Florida State University and the University of Houston, and was an adjunct professor at Franklin University in his retirement years.
During his career, he received many accolades, including national and regional honors, state and local awards, recognitions and service for publications, special events, programs and professional achievements and volunteer service.
Significant to the community of Circleville is the scholarship endowment fund at Ohio University in Barry's name, established by OU board members, colleagues and friends when he took a new position at William and Mary. The W. Barry Adams Scholarship Fund has resulted in more than 25 Circleville High School students with a freshman scholarship to OU in Athens that amounts to about $1,000 annually.
In 1994, Ohio University presented Barry with its highest alumni award, the Medal of Merit, for Distinction in University Advancement and Service to Alma Mater. In 2006, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) presented him with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
At Franklin University, where he taught courses for five years in global issues, public relations and communications, he earned an Excellence in Teaching Award.
Barry's dedication, expertise and resolute belief in advancing public education eventually led him to become chair of the Circleville City School Foundation (CCSF) in retirement. He played a key role in propelling CCSF's success in new funding programs, grants and scholarships for Circleville students.
He was inducted into the 2019 Circleville High School Achievement Hall of Fame for Inspired University and Organization Leadership. He was a substitute teacher in Circleville High School from 2009 to 2015.
Among past posts are stints as a volunteer coach, a board member for the humane society and a founding board member for a community health foundation. A former volunteer at the National Veterans Memorial and Museum in Columbus, Barry also served several times on U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown's Service Academy Interview Committee (for Ohio students applying to the service academies) and was a member of the Columbus Dispatch Readers' Advisory Board throughout 2019.
Barry was a seasoned traveler having visited 57 countries on six continents in his lifetime, starting with his two and a half-year residence in Japan while in the Navy. He continued experiencing other cultures through business and personal travel. Highlights included walking on the Great Wall in China, touring Machu Picchu in Peru, enjoying an African safari, seeing the Sphinx and Great Pyramids in Egypt, experiencing Havana, Cuba and hiking into the Grand Canyon.
Barry was also an avid photographer and was always reading a good book. Barry enjoyed golfing throughout his life, birding and was happiest when there was a dog in his life.
In lieu of flowers, Barry asked that donations be made to the W. Barry Adams Scholarship Fund at the Ohio University Foundation, Box 869, Athens, Ohio 45701.
Donations can be made by personal check, credit card or online (www.OhioUniversityFund.com go to Give to Ohio University) and be sure to designate your gift as restricted for the W. Barry Adams Scholarship Fund, an endowed fund that is strengthened each year by earned interest from the Foundation.
Contributions to Kobacker House hospice center would also be encouraged where he received such compassionate care in his final days (Kobacker House, 800 McConnell Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43214 or OhioHealth/KobackerHouse).
A graveside ceremony will be restricted to family members and a celebration of life will be arranged in the coming months.
Online condolences can be made to www.wellmanfuneralhomes.com. Wayne Adams