Murphy Funeral Homes

4510 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA

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November 18, 1935May 9, 2020

Barbara Ann Clements Nov 18, 1935 - May 9, 2020

It is with great sadness that the Clements family announces the passing of their beloved wife, mother, and grandmother, Barbara Ann (Eslin) Clements on May 9, 2020 in Arlington, VA. She was born on November 18, 1935 in Washington, D.C. to the late Charles “Bud” Eslin and the late Ann (Mooney) Eslin.

Barbara graduated from Coolidge High School where she was senior class president. She attended Wilson Teachers College where she went on her first date to the Harvest Moon Ball with Charles Ray Clements, who would become her devoted husband for 63 years.

She was a first grade teacher until becoming a doting mother to Charles Jr., Kevin and Keith. She eventually embarked on a 30-year career on Capitol Hill, first working for Senator Jim Broyhill as a member of his administrative staff, then for Senator Ted Stevens. Despite her demanding job, she always put her family first, never missing her sons’ school or sports activities.

Barbara’s family and friends were her greatest sources of joy and she was equally adored by all those who knew her.

Her proudest role was being a mom and grandma, and not just to her sons and grandchildren but to anyone who needed it. She was therapist, chauffeur, line cook, and disciplinarian to many of the neighborhood children. She and Charlie spent many years organizing and chaperoning ski trips to Seven Springs and beach trips to Ocean City, MD, doing her best to keep a spirited group of teens (and her husband) in line. There are few teen boys who grew up in Arlington in the 70s and 80s who didn’t, at least once, feel the wrath of “Broom Hilda”, a moniker she wore proudly.

She was also a breast cancer survivor. She was never one to back down from a fight and faced her challenges head on and with levity, defying doctors and naysayers with her stubbornness and strength of will.

Barbara enjoyed her retirement by traveling the world with her beloved Charlie and spending as much time as possible with her children and grandchildren at her home in Arlington, Virginia and in Ocean City, Maryland. She remained active in her community and with her “family” from her time on the Hill. She was a member of both the North Carolina State Society and the Alaska State Society. She was a big supporter of various charities, including those closest to her heart - the Believe in Tomorrow Children’s Foundation, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, and the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Barbara is preceded in death by her brothers Donald (Donnie) Eslin and Charles (Chip) Eslin.

She will be lovingly remembered by her husband Charlie; her three sons (and daughters-in-law) Charles (Jane), Kevin (Tracy), and Keith (Susan); her six grandchildren Timothy, Kelly, Jacob, Brett, Megan, and Brooks; and her many nieces and nephews.

A private family service will be held at Murphy Funeral Homes in Arlington, Virginia, followed by a private burial at Columbia Gardens Cemetery.

A reception celebrating Barbara’s life will be held for family and friends at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests charitable donations be made in her memory.



have a memory or condolence to add?

George Asmus

May 18, 2020

Great write-up for an amazing lady who had a wonderful life and impacted so many people in a positive way.

Ashlee Kirk

May 15, 2020

My sweet Godmother... Thank you for being such a spark of joy in my life. Thanks for showing me what it means to be a strong woman. Thanks for making me laugh, think and challenge myself to be a better person. Thanks for the birthday cards and always thinking of others. I am so blessed to have you and Charlie as my Godparents. My deepest condolences to the entire family - love you all.

Also, thanks for the Teddy’s Ginger Beer soda from our visit in December. I will drink it in your honor (and order more!).

Annette Doherty

May 14, 2020

With fondest memories from the Doherty family. May she Rest In Peace.😇

Greg Skoog

May 14, 2020

Always had the utmost respect for Mrs C. I marveled how she juggled such important positions in government against the crazy demands from the men in her life at home. When I visited their home Barbara and Charlie always made feel like I was royalty, even though I was just another college roommate in town to party. She wanted me to feel like part of the family, which I truly did. Her restful peace has been well earned. Blessings and prayers to my friend Kevin and family. Rest In Peace Mrs C

Cecile Srodes

May 14, 2020

I worked with Barbara for several years in the office of Congressman (later Senator) Jim Broyhill. The Broyhill office was like a family and Barbara was a central figure. She was unflappable in the face of many a crisis – a wonderful colleague and friend. It was my pleasure of spend time with her and Charlie at Senator Broyhill’s 90th birthday party a couple of years ago. My sympathies to Charlie and the family.


Brian Blados

May 14, 2020

Everyone has that great friend who "adopts" you into their family. The Clements had a ton of "adopted " kids and "Broom" was the Matriarch of that clan. She loved us all !

My fondest memory of them was the year I almost made the cut to be part of the Christmas Eve tradition. If you know the Clements you will understand. Highest honor that could be achieved. Love them all , and I will always be thinking of her.

God Bless.


Gregg Robertson

May 12, 2020

It wasn’t just the teenagers in the neighborhood, I think I just about got the broom once or twice myself! I am so sorry to hear of her passing. She was such an honest and strong person who always knew what was going on. A wonderful person and a great Mother. Her absence will be felt by many for a long time!

Phil Kirk

May 12, 2020

I cannot think of a more wonderful friend than Barbara...and, of course, Charlie. I met Barbara in 1977 when I became Chief of Staf for then-Congressman Jim Broyhill and later Senator Broyhill. While Barbara's work on social security issues helped to re-elect Broyhill, she was much more valuable....she always smiled, always worked very hard, and always cared about helping others. My wife and I were friends outside the office. We rented our first home from them at ridiculously lower than market value prices! We went on our first and only cruise with Charlie and Barbara. We went on vacations with them at Myrtle Beach. We shared good times and not-so-good times. Wonderful people!

Doug Grove

May 12, 2020

An absolutely wonderful person. I am saddened by the news of her passing, but have many fond memories of times spent with her and her family in Arlington and Ocean City. As many friends of Charlie, Kevin & Keith can attest, Barbara was equally proficient with her left and right hand keeping us line. As patient as anyone could possibly be, once she had enough, someone was going to get smacked with a spatula, fly swatter, or broom handle. Thanks for the laughs and for always being a gracious hostess. Linda and I offer our deepest sympathies to her family.

Angela Kirk Prenoveau

May 12, 2020

Barbara and Charlie were dear friends to my parents, Phil and Margaret Kirk. She and my Dad had such a hilarious banter and you just knew that you were going to laugh when they got together. Her relationship with Charlie was one that young couples only dream about. She will be missed terribly. My deepest condolences to the entire family....

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