Ray Barnhart

BARNHART, Ray Anderson, 85, of St. Clairsville, Ohio, passed away May 26, 2013 at OVMC, Wheeling.

He was born to O.E. Barnhart and the former Alice Mildred Anderson in Elgin, Illinois. An Eagle Scout, he graduated from Elgin High School and enlisted in the U.S. Army, and served until 1947. Thereafter, he studied speech and theater arts at Marietta College in Marietta, Ohio, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree. He married the former Jacqueline Price of Bellaire. In 1951, he received his Master of Arts degree from the University of Houston Texas. He returned to Marietta College as an instructor until 1955, when the Barnhart’s relocated to Houston where he entered the construction business. His political interest began with two terms on the City Council in Pasadena, a suburb of Houston, and continued with him being named Chairman of the Harris County Republican Party in 1975. It was under his state chairmanship that Texas elected its first Republican governor in 100 years. He was then asked by Ronald Reagan to manage his presidential primary campaign in Texas. In 1979, Ray was appointed by the Governor of Texas to serve on the Texas Department of Transportation Board until U.S. President Ronald Reagan appointed Ray to be the Director of the Federal Highway Administration in Washington D.C. from 1981-1987. In 2004, he was inducted into the Texas Transportation Institute Hall of Fame and in 2006, was inducted into the Marietta College Hall of Honor.

He leaves behind his wife, Jacqueline, his daughter Whitney Barnhart of Shadyside, Ohio, his daughter Mallory (Mrs. Mark) Rousselot of Sonora, Texas, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, a nephew, friends from the St. Clairsville Rotary Club, and the East Richland Friends Church, and friends all over the country.

At Ray’s request there will be no services with private interment in the family cemetery on the Rousselot Ranch in Sonora, Texas. Arrangements entrusted to Toothman Funeral Home in St. Clairsville.

Ray is very much loved and will be greatly missed by many.

Memorial contributions may be made in Ray’s memory to the charity or church of the donor’s choice.