OBITUARY

Barbara Hughes "Sweet Thang the Clown" Cox

July 5, 1946March 6, 2019
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Cox, Barbara Hughes, of Richmond, passed away on March 6, 2019. She was preceded in death by her parents, William John Hughes and Bessie Clarke Hughes. She is survived by her loving husband, Michael Cox; daughter, Dawn White; sister, Mary H. Shelton; and numerous other family members.

Barbara found her true calling as a professional clown, was a member of Clowns of America International and Virginia Alley 3, and taught clown classes as well as performing. She brought joy and happiness to hundreds of hearts.

The family will receive friends on Sunday, March 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Woody Funeral Home, 1771 N. Parham Rd., Richmond, VA 23229. A celebration of Barbara’s life will be held at Ridge Baptist Church, 1515 Eastridge Rd., Henrico, VA 23229 on Monday, March 11 at 11 a.m., with interment at 2:30 p.m. at Forest Lawn Cemetery, 4000 Pilots Ln., Richmond, VA 23222. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Barbara’s name to the ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation, 5211 W. Broad St., Ste 102, Richmond, VA 23230 http://www.askccf.org/donate.html

Services

  • Visitation Sunday, March 10, 2019
  • Funeral Service Monday, March 11, 2019
  • Committal Service Monday, March 11, 2019
REMEMBERING

Barbara Hughes "Sweet Thang the Clown" Cox

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Carolyn Brooker

March 14, 2019

Remembering our very special South Nags Head neighbor, Barbara, who was always a huge hit in the annual Nags Head St Patrick's Day parade with her husband, Mike. I always enjoyed seeiing her on the beach and out and about with her doggie, Princess. We will all surely miss her in "The Hood" .

Teresa Gretton

March 11, 2019

Our hearts are aching! Barbara and Mike, a very dear couple, whom we have known for thirty years. Clowning brought us together! Got to know Mike first but it was quite obvious when Barbara entered the picture that she would be his mate. Our experiences as two couples stretched from one convention to another as well as our close "sisters" alleys. Usually we were all so involved in clowning around that we had less time to enjoy gabbing among ourselves except when we sat at a banquet table together. One of the moments we shared without clowning around was in Jacksonville on the St. John's River enjoying a water taxi ride. Barbara competed quite regularly in clown makeup, not to win but to enhance and improve. It paid off as she took critiques seriously and worked hard at perfecting her designs and applications and went on to win many competitions. She often called me (Teresa) her mentor which I felt so honored. Barbara, we will miss you tremendously, but somehow I know you will be with us along the way. You put up a brave battle in such a short time. You have won the fight though because we know you are climbing those stairs to the Gate of Heaven. We'll keep a close eye on Mike.
Love,
Teresa & Bob GRETTON

Rose Greene

March 9, 2019

I only knew Barbara and her family for 2 weeks. I was her roommate at Westport Rehab.
She was such a soft spoken lady that was quietly accepting of her food and care.
I feel that I was put there for a reason. I was able to help her and become her voice and advocate when I saw that she needed more.
It became a daily joke as I learned to order more from our menus and find extra goodies for our "stash."
We spent hours sharing life experiences and quickly became friends and formed a strong bond.
I had no idea that I was sharing time with professional clowns that had spent such an extraordinary amount of time brightening the lives of others.
I shared 2 weeks with this wonderful lady, her caring husband, family and friends. They included me in their prayers and showed me warmth and concern daily during my recovery. Thank you.
I feel blessed to have met Barbara and her family and been part of her life.
I thank God for allowing me to have helped such a gentle and loving soul.
My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Rest in Peace my Friend

Sheri Wilson

March 8, 2019

Barbara ( Sweet Thang) and Mike (Bonkers) as a team, has brought so much joy & laughter to so many families in our area. Raising Money for Charities, helping the homeless, doing skits for the special needs adults, bringing comfort to their friends in Clown Alley 3 & their family. Volunteering together almost every weekend truly made them such a happy couple. They also touched so many hearts as Santa & Mrs. Claus. In our lifetime - we can only hope to have touched and made a difference in as many lives as Barbara and Mike. Barbara loved being a Professional Clown and Mrs. Claus and her heart was always with the families who their children were struggling with cancer. Barbara will be missed by so many and especially her Clown Alley Family. We will carry her spirit with us as Clown Alley 3 - continues volunteering in the Richmond area. Our thoughts and prayers are with Barbara's family & friends.
Miss Sheri The Clown

Marie Bridgers

March 7, 2019

Barbara was my neighbor at Nags Head. She made our St. Patrick's Day Parade entry a yearly winner with her wonderful costume and interaction with the parade attendees. Barbara and I had very sick dogs and we often shared our experiences with veterinarians and different drug protocols as we tried to make the right decisions for the animals we loved. I will miss seeing her sitting on her deck reading which she often did. I am sure everyone in our hood is sad today. I know I am.

Judy Johnson

March 7, 2019

More than 2 Decades this amazing gentle,kind,lady influenced me by her love and caring... Through our love of clowning I was honored to know and say Barbara was a friend... Always giving love and support.... Last year when Barbara met my junior Joey. Tonya was full of hugs and right back was sweet -thangs love... Forever touched and in my heart.... God Bless all... Many smiles in heaven today... Bump A Nose until we meet again... Rest well my friend 🙏

Carol "Holiday" Coleman

March 7, 2019

Your years of friendship I hold in my heart, Sweet Thang the Clown was a strong part of the clowning in the Mid Atlantic, and with clowning community across the USA. You warmed the hearts of many, with your clowning. For 12 years you did the White House Event of the Pageant of Peace the National Tree Lighting. We will miss you, Holiday The Clown, Milford, De.

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Biography

Cox, Barbara Hughes, of Richmond, passed away on March 6, 2019. She was preceded in death by her parents, William John Hughes and Bessie Clarke Hughes. She is survived by her loving husband, Michael Cox; daughter, Dawn White; sister, Mary H. Shelton; and numerous other family members.

Barbara found her true calling as a professional clown, was a member of Clowns of America International and Virginia Alley 3, and taught clown classes as well as performing. She brought joy and happiness to hundreds of hearts.

The family will receive friends on Sunday, March 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Woody Funeral Home, 1771 N. Parham Rd., Richmond, VA 23229. A celebration of Barbara’s life will be held at Ridge Baptist Church, 1515 Eastridge Rd., Henrico, VA 23229 on Monday, March 11 at 11 a.m., with interment at 2:30 p.m. at Forest Lawn Cemetery, 4000 Pilots Ln., Richmond, VA 23222. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Barbara’s name to the ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation, 5211 W. Broad St., Ste 102, Richmond, VA 23230 http://www.askccf.org/donate.html