Jeffrey Charles Barnett, 74, of Whitewater, Wisconsin, passed away on January 12, 2021, in the comfort of his home with his loving wife, Barbara, by his side.
Jeff succumbed to the ravages of Lewy Body Dementia, Raynaud’s Disease, and Parkinson’s, and is survived by his wife of 53 years, Barbara; son David and his wife Heather; sister, Nancy; grandchildren Matthew and his wife Emilie, Manda, Michael, Mikaela, and Makenzie; and great-granddaughter Hallee. Jeff was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and friend to everyone who knew him.
He was born on October 24, 1946, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Charles and Jean Barnett. He received his bachelor’s degree from Shippensburg University, his Master’s from Bucknell University, and his PhD from Penn State University. He was an educator his entire life, teaching math and education at Northern Illinois University and Fort Hays State University, where he became Assistant Dean of Education. In 1989, he moved to Whitewater, Wisconsin, where he became the Dean of the Department of Education at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater until he retired in 2010.
He loved reading, woodworking, gardening, and camping, but his true passion was martial arts. In 1987, he earned his black belt. After moving to Whitewater, he began a TaeKwonDo program at UW-Whitewater in 1990, teaching the first Beginning TaeKwonDo class. That program still continues today. He was the faculty sponsor for the Warhawk Karate Club founded by his son, and that club also still exists on campus.
He and Barb were members of St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Whitewater, WI.
Visitation will be from 5-7 p.m. at Nitardy Funeral Home in Whitewater on Friday, January 15, 2021. Funeral services will be at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Whitewater on Saturday, January 16. The viewing will be from 9-10 a.m., with the service from 10-11 a.m.. Online condolences may be made at nitardyfuneralhome.com.