Bart Jones

March 2, 1943 - March 5, 2023

Leaf - Earth Leaf - Earth Leaf - Earth Leaf - Earth

Obituary for BART Jones (Andrew Barton, Jr)(1943-2023) Bart Jones was born in Welch, West Virginia to Rev. Andrew Barton Jones & Jean Carter Jones on March 2, 1943. He died March 5, 2023, shortly after turning 80. Bart learned to read at age 5 when he had rheumatic fever and skipped first grade with his unusually high IQ. After graduating from Oakwood Friends School in Poughkeepsie, NY, he attended Reed College in Portland, OR, where he majored in linguistics and received a bachelor's degree. He spent his junior year in Greece where he learned modern Greek. Bart entered doctoral programs in linguistics at the University of Chicago, the University of Pennsylvania (where he edited a book, Kinesics and Context, by Ray Birdwhistell), and SUNY Buffalo, where it became clear he wasn't destined to be an academic. After moving to Portland, OR, Bart helped start a Bicycle Repair Collective and worked for the Urban Planning Department for the City of Portland. Bart was an inspiration to many for his pursuit of a unique lifestyle. He looked to the past, as well as the future, being a lover of renaissance music and steward of the land, while being an early computer enthusiast as well. He lived an unconventional life that included being frugal, including riding his recumbent bike for travel and across most of the country. He was gifted in making things work and using words creatively to express his firm opinions. He had an unusually good ear and liked early music, recorder, and flute. He also loved folk dancing, scouting, bicycling, science fiction, and doing pretty much anything barefoot - including hiking. In 2000, he donated a kidney to his niece, Rae Jones. He met Ruth McNeil (known affectionately as “Woofie" to many) through his sister-in-law Melissa, a fellow teacher, through an initial cross-continent correspondence. They married in 1992 and lived together in Medford, MA, then moved to Corvallis, OR, where Bart owned and managed an undeveloped tree farm. Bart added a road, a yurt, and some shelters to the land, as well as working diligently on managing the trees. Bart was involved in two groups focused on music - the Eugene Round singers (for over 30 years) where he sang rounds and one where he played baroque and early music with a variety of specialty recorders. Ruth died about 2 years ago. Bart had Parkinson's disease for about 10 years, which became more serious during the past year. Bart leaves behind his brother and sister-in-law, Stephen and Melissa Jones, sister Marion Phelps (Dave), niece Rae Jones, nephew Michael Jones,(Cassandra Welch, Ava and Sean Jones), and many close friends and chosen family in the Willamette Valley. Bart's body is currently undergoing a composting burial process and the majority of the soil from this process will be sent to a conservation site on the Olympic Peninsula.


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Earth specializes in soil transformation, an environmentally-friendly alternative to burial and cremation. Over a 45-day process, we gently transform a body into nutrient-rich soil. We then send this soil to our local conservation land where it’s used for restoration projects such as reforestation and nourishing challenged ecosystems.

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