Barron Douglas Goodson was born August 13, 1949 in Lincoln County. As a child he would sit and read the encyclopedia, enjoyed listening to stories on his grandfather’s porch late into the night, and was reported by all to have a sweet spirit from a very early age.
He attended Lincoln County Schools where he was an honor student, member of the Beta Club, athlete, Eagle Scout and recipient of the God and Country Award. He graduated from UNC Chapel Hill in 1971 with a BS in business administration and was on the Dean’s List.
His first job after college was in manufacturing supervision with Cannon Mills, Inc. He later became a purchasing agent and eventually the director of all domestic purchasing for Fieldcrest-Cannon and Pillowtex, working in all three entities for thirty-two years. Barron learned construction from his father and became a licensed contractor and president of Tanglebriar Investments. Later he became a real estate broker for B & R Realty and was Chairman of the Southern Select Credit Union Board of Directors in Kannapolis. He was a past member of Faith Civitan Club as well as of Macedonia Baptist Church, Lincolnton, and then Faith Baptist Church, Faith.
A True Gentleman
He was also a devoted husband to Sharon Ragan Goodson for thirty-eight years and a loving father to Dr. Summer Gail Goodson of Chapel Hill and Sunni Leigh Goodson of Dublin, Ireland. He taught all of his girls about the simple pleasures in life, about how to be self-sufficient, and about the merits of approaching life with both responsibility and serenity. He loved and was loved deeply, and lived by the words of “Desiderata” or “things desired” which he shared with his girls. Witty yet humble, loyal and unruffled, salt-of-the-earth, calm and affirming, and a true gentleman; these are the characteristics which Barron embodied. He made the world a better place just by being in it, once saving a woman’s life by administering CPR. Barron enjoyed his family and friends more than most anything, as well as collecting and attending classic car shows. He traveled throughout the Southeast with close friends over the years, attending shows much like the one we are putting together in his honor. All of Barron’s classics, including his 1934 Ford, 1955 Pontiac, 1957 Chevy truck, 1963 Studebaker Hawk, 1963 Thunderbird, and 1987 Chevy truck seen throughout this website courtesy of Traci Arney Photography, will be at the event.
He had regular check-ups, and yet the decline in his health began in early 2010 with a persistent respiratory infection. Though he was under a doctor’s care, for four months the Stage IV inoperable, incurable non-smoker’s, non-small cell adenocarcinoma lung cancer went undetected. Though he had the mutation predicted to respond to a targeted drug and participated in the clinical trial at UNC-Chapel Hill, there was no change in the disease process. However, due to regular chemo and radiation treatments, Barron’s health improved and he remained stable for many months until the cancer began to progress again in early 2011.
Despite constant pain for two years and extreme side effects from the medications, Barron remained positive, a man of faith, hope, and humor. He possessed a quiet strength and never complained once about his disease or discomfort. Throughout his fight he praised God and asked for healing only if it was His will. He was the epitome of perseverance, and insisted taking us, “his girls” out West to see “God’s country” which he had enjoyed previously with a dear friend.
Barron eventually lost the ability to walk or turn over on his own. Having been hospitalized numerous times throughout the twenty-one months, finally while spending a month in the hospital we were told he had entered the “comfort only” phase. We returned home to care for him in the country environs that he loved, joined by our precious daughters who put their careers on hold in Chapel Hill and Dublin, Ireland, to help care for him. To the end, Barron could not understand the hundreds, nearly thousands, of cards sent to him or the number of prayers being lifted up in his name. We held his hand until God took it on January 5, 2012, several months past his original prognosis.