Earle Barnette

Richard Earle Barnette

JANUARY 12, 1936 – JANUARY 25, 2020

Richard Earle Barnette, age 84, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Saturday, January 25, 2020. A Celebration of his life will be held on Wednesday, January 29, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. in the Chapel of Macon Memorial Park Funeral Home. Burial will be in Macon Memorial Park Cemetery with the Dr. Bob Moon officiating. The family will greet friends from 1:00 p.m. to service time at the funeral home. Flowers are accepted or donations may be made to Martha Bowman Methodist Church, Bowman Brass, 500 Bass Road, Macon GA 31210.

Earle was born in Macon, Georgia to the late Ennis Hartley and Lucile Branan Barnette. He was preceded in death by his siblings, Leonard Hartley Barnette, Edna Barnette Barnett, Helen Barnette Culpepper and Bobby Ray Barnette.

Earle was the first male graduate of Wesleyan College and he earned a Master’s Degree in Music from the University of Georgia. Earle was a member of Martha Bowman Methodist Church, the Nan Freeman Sunday School Class, and where he began the Bowman Brass Orchestra.

He was instrumental in starting the Elementary Band programs for the Bibb County Board of Education and was retired as a Band Director in the Bibb County School System. Earle is known for starting the Band Program at Stratford Academy and Covenant Academy and was the Musical Director at the Macon Little Theatre. He played in the Brass Section for the Macon Civic Club Show for fifty years and played with the Berner Heard Orchestra and Steve Cole Orchestra as well as numerous others. Earle was best known for his musical talent playing the trombone and was a gifted musician that could play any instrument.

He was a devoted and loving husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother and uncle. He is survived by the love of his life, Evelyn Mercer Barnette of Macon, daughters, Shelly Barnette Rappaport of Atlanta, Skyla Barnette (Jeff) Sherrill of Lawrenceville, Torri Barnette of Macon, grandchildren, Whitney (Drew) Stockman, Austin Barnette (Meghan) Sherrill, Garrett Matthew Rappaport, great grandchildren, Maddux Barnette Sherrill and August Gray Sherrill and several nieces and nephews.

Visit to express condolences. Macon Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery has charge of the arrangements.

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01/27/20 10:18 PM #1    

Jimmy Smith (1968)

RIP Mr B. You made a difference in this old tuba player's life ! My fondest memories of high school was with the MS marching band. Both you and Mrs B helped countless boys and girls improve and enrich their lives ! I'm still sorry about letting the wind blow me down the hill at Henderson Stadium and beating the hell out of your tuba .

03/30/20 11:09 AM #2    

Guy Ingram (1971)

There are only a couple of teachers that made a profound impact on my life and Mr B was one of them.  When I was in the fifth grade he started teaching me is an instrument that i still play after 50+ years.  I will always remember him marching us in our halftime shows, making sure our lines were straight.  I will never forget the time when we played "650 East March" instead of the correct piece during a rehersal for the band competition; the look on his face never changed, he just kept going as if that was the correct piece of music.  He expected our best, and very few were not willing to give it to him.

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