Barbara was born on the Lundell homestead in May 1919, to Henry and Lydia Lundell. She and her three brothers, Kenneth, Jerry and Glenn grew up on the ranch, riding in horse and buggies to and from school and church. They also formed a small band, since music was such an important part of their youth.
Barbara attended Hilmar schools and upon graduation in 1936, she entered San Jose State Teachers College. There she graduated in 1941 with a major in elementary education and a minor in music. Her first teaching position was in a one room schoolhouse in Atwater. A few years later, she moved to teach in Hilmar.
On June 20, 1946, Barbara married Rev. C. Milton Strom. During the summer months, Barbara traveled with Milton around the United States, as he was involved in ministry with the Evangelical Covenant Church. They were both very involved in Hilmar Covenant Church music programs, with Barbara becoming the church pianist in 1941. She then became the church organist from 1952-2000. Barbara also taught Sunday school, was very involved with missions, and was a faithful visitor of many elderly and sick. As a charter member of the Emanuel Hospital Women’s auxiliary, she served until 2008. You may remember her at the surgery waiting room desk.
For over 40 years, Barbara taught in Hilmar. She started in 2nd grade for two years and then moved into Kindergarten. Can you imagine the scraped knees she bandaged, the hurt feelings she mended and the number of noses she wiped? In the late 40’s she started the tradition of making handprints as a gift for the parents. She also returned, after retirement, to continue this memorable tradition. Over the years, she was doing 3rd generation handprints! Do you still have yours? If so, bring it to the reception following the memorial service.
Barbara is survived by her brother Glenn (Arlis); sisters in law Vivian Nordeen of Mercer Is, WA and Beverly Strom-Wenstrand of Hilmar. She also leaves numerous nieces and nephews, many of whom had her as a teacher.
Spending the last few years at Covenant Village, the family would like to thank the Covenant Village of Turlock Care Center staff for their patience and love for Aunt Barbara. Memorials may be given to the Benevolence Fund of Covenant Village of Turlock, Covenant Care Hospice of Turlock or to the Barbara Strom Scholarship Fund in care of Hilmar Covenant Church. This scholarship fund is for youth majoring in music or education and attending North Park University in Chicago.
On Friday, April 10, 2015 from 2:00-6:00 p.m. there will be a visitation at Allen Mortuary in Turlock. Burial will be Saturday, April 11th at 9:00 a.m. at North Hilmar Cemetery. Memorial service will follow at 11:00 a.m. at Hilmar Covenant Church with a light lunch to follow in the church Family Center. Please share your memories at