Barbara Joyce Elsperman

Barbara Joyce Elsperman passed away peacefully in her sleep on Feb. 8, 2021, in Pleasanton.  

Barbara grew up in Rio Vista, California, where she met the fisherman of her dreams. They eventually landed in Livermore to start a family.

To some, she was Barb, Barbie, pr Babe, but to us she, was big grandma. She landed that name when us kids sought it to be fit standing next to her 4’9” mother, whom we called little grandma.

Barbara spent a lot of her days working as a volunteer at Valley Memorial Hospital, Intel, and in various elementary lunchrooms, where she gained many dear friends. She was a strong-willed woman who often proclaimed she wasn’t “arguing with you, just simply explaining why she was right.”

She was a woman of many lessons, such as ponytails are essential, the perfect macaroni salad is an art and a woman never “toots” in the presence of others. Well, except for that one time - we never did let her live that down.

Barbara enjoyed all her grandchildren and would spend summers spoiling us then sending us home. There was nothing quite like a weekend at grannies with a trip to shadow cliffs, Yin Yin’s Chinese food and unlimited arm rubs.

She had a special and unique love for animals. She mostly found love in her heart for dogs that needed it the most. As her grandchildren grew, she redirected the spoiling to a rescue Chihuahua named Dexter (aka Cujo to the rest of us). We know Dexter was there to greet you with lots of kisses.

Although her work here is done, her new mission comes with a family reunion with lots of love and an overdue girl’s day with her best pal, Betty. She will be very missed but never forgotten.  

Barbara is survived by her daughter, Nancy Wilkerson (Robin); her beloved fur-baby, Casper; grandchildren, Jena Vogel (Robert), Jesse Wilkerson (Meghan) and Jennifer Lacey (Seth); and her great grandchildren, Brooke, Olive, Cannen and Merrick. Barbara is proceeded in death by her husband, Glenn Elsperman; and son, Michael Elsperman.

At Barbara’s request, there will not be a public service, and as we all know, low adherence to this instruction will not be tolerated. In lieu of flowers, Barbara would prefer donations be made to your local ASPCA.