Barbara was born Aug. 5, 1931 to George and Irene Port McLean of Youngstown, Ohio; after her mother’s death, Barbara was adopted by her aunt, Ethel Port.
She attended South High School in Youngstown and graduated from Wheaton College Academy in Chicago. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Bethel College, St. Paul, Minn. with a major in English literature and a minor in Spanish.
In 1953, Barbara married Herbert Hage of West Orange, N.J., a student at Bethel Seminary. After graduating, Barb and Herb moved to New Jersey and to ministry at the Franklin Lakes Community Church. In 1957, they relocated to Ohio, settling in Poland in 1960 with their two daughters, Carla and Christine. In 1977, Herb accepted a pastoral call to First Baptist Church in Forest City, Iowa where they served until they moved to Arlington Heights, Ill. and service at the Baptist General Conference headquarters. In retirement, they returned to the Mahoning Valley until 2002 when they moved to Cambridge, Minn.
Barbara’s life was grounded in her deep faith in God and love of Jesus, her love for her husband and family, and her extended circle of life-long friends. God blessed her with a beautiful singing voice; a love of literature, politics and theology; a remarkable strength of purpose and resilience; and a sense of humor that stuck with her to the end.
A life-long Swedish Baptist, Barbara was an active member of Evangel Baptist Church in Youngstown for many years. She also volunteered widely in her community, including years of service as a poll worker in Ohio elections; serving as a Girl Scout troop leader; participating in the PTA, Christian Women’s Club, and Poland Band Parents; and ushering for the Youngstown Symphony. In retirement she joined First Baptist Church of Cambridge and the River Hills retirement communities.
Barbara was preceded in death by her husband, Carl Herbert Hage in 2002.
She is survived by her daughters, Carla Johnson (Randy) of St. Cloud, Minn., and Christine Diaz de Leon (Samuel) of Roseville, Minn.; sister Carol Thompson (Gene) of Champlin, Minn.; granddaughter, Anna Johnson of Sartell, Minn. and great-grandson Evan Hans Hoivik; step-grandson, Aaron Johnson (Cheryl) of Madison, Wis. and their children Noah, Gideon and Eve.
A Memorial Service was held Thursday, June 30, 2011 at First Baptist Church in Cambridge with Rev. Bob Jonsson and Rev. Terry Port officiating. Special vocal music was provided by Randy Johnson and Aaron Johnson and special instrumental music by LaDonna Larson and Mary Mork. Interment was in the Cambridge Union Cemetery.
Arrangements were with the Carlson-Lillemoen Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Cambridge.