Barbara Constance Flash (nee Parkes) was born in Mandeville, Manchester, Jamaica where she was raised by her maternal grandmother Charlotte Parkes. She attended Manchester High School and the West Indies College before marrying Magnus Flash (predeceased). Barbara and Magnus settled in Williamsfield, Manchester and the union produced five children. Barbara was a devoted and loving mother and homemaker who, while raising her children, was a volunteer with the Jamaica Movement for the Advancement of Literacy (JAMAL), a foundation focused on providing less privileged adults with literacy skills. The Flash family home was a welcome retreat to friends, relatives, and acquaintances from all walks of life and from all over the island. It was a place to relax, refresh, party or enjoy a game of football or cricket. Barbara was the perfect hostess and often a participant in the activities.
As her children grew older, Barbara sought other challenges, and decided to seek employment outside the home. For a few years she worked with the Agricultural Marketing Corporation (AMC) as a manager of their Mandeville store before deciding to migrate to Florida for more opportunities. Barbara later joined her son Carlyle in Boston Massachusetts, where she worked at Cushing Hospital for several years. But her greatest impact was as a caregiver where she had a lasting influence on the lives of children and adults alike. When Barbara left Massachusetts to settle in Delray Beach, she continued to be active in her community. She volunteered in the hospice unit at the nearby hospital and participated in church and other social activities.
Barbara’s legacy is her warm personality, generosity and genuine love of people. She had a naturally calm and comforting demeanor that would put anyone at ease. She had the gift of making one feel that they were the most important person in the room. Barbara’s charm and sincerity endeared her to all she met, and she formed many enduring friendships in Jamaica and the United States. She was a strong, enterprising, pragmatic and independent woman with a very generous heart. Seldom would a visitor leave her home without a gift of some sort, be it food, clothing, a book or knitted cross. She was a patient, keen listener and gave prudent advice. Her smile and laughter were infectious. She enjoyed singing, dancing, knitting, Scrabble and challenging jigsaw puzzles. Barbara was acutely aware of world affairs and was quick to comment on the latest issues. She was an avid collector of knickknacks and her Christmas decorations were the delight of children and adults alike.
Barbara would end her conversations with the words “Love you, love you. Do the best you can.” An affirmation of the adoration she felt for her friends and family, and encouragement to face life’s challenges ahead. She leaves behind children Michael (Careth), Carlyle (Allyson), Oliver (Karen), Fasiel (Carolyn), and Andrea (Alan), sisters Celia and Cristina, grandchildren Carlyle Jr, Tara, Michaela, Jamel, Ja’nya, Shaquille, Karmello, Ezra, Charles, Allyanna, great grandson Christian, and other relatives and countless friends.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to be made in her name to St. Gregory's Episcopal Church in Boca Raton, FL.
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