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Howard "Rip" Barnes, 1951-2017


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Posted 25 July 2017 - 12:01 PM

Archdale Raceway's Garland Brown posted this sad notice to Facenook yesterday:

 

"It is with great sadness I attempt to make this post. The world has lost another great guy, Howard Barnes Jr., better known as "Rip," passed away yesterday. He was my friend and a friend to many in the racing world. If you knew him you liked him, he left this world for the next one. He just left way too soon 1951-2017.

 

To "Rip" I say rest in peace my friend and to his sons, if I can help in any way please let me know.

 

Myself with "Rip" on our first joint win."

 

ripbarnes.jpg


Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap





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Posted 25 July 2017 - 12:05 PM

Raced with Rip many times in the Carolinas, where he was active in slot racing for many years. Super nice and friendly guy.

 

He'd stopped running slots a number of years ago and moved to Malone, NY, where he operated a fine art and resale studio.

 

RIP, my friend...

 

I know some of the Carolina racers will have known Rip. Please post some of your memories here...


Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap


#3 Tex

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Posted 25 July 2017 - 12:29 PM

:(


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Posted 25 July 2017 - 09:59 PM

Here's a tribute from Rip's brother, reposted from Facebook:

 

"His name... was Rip Barnes. I've got to admit, I am overwhelmed with the number of tributes I've seen, and thankful to all my friends and family that have contacted me or posted. I've chosen to reach out to everyone at once in this fashion, as to do so individually would just be too much. Please accept this as my sincere thanks for all the kind words, wishes, and concern.

 

I have started writing this a few times, perhaps because Rip is so difficult to sum up in words, perhaps because I truly still cannot believe he's gone.

 

He and I were so close these last ten years... we were supposed to have at least another 10 tearing it up being the "Barnes Boys"... with my mom, dad, and sister passed... the survivors. I was in no hurry to be the last one standing, the patriarch, but here I stand. Despite some serious bumps in the road, he loved his four boys... he talked about each of them every time I saw him. His four beautiful boys, the "four Js," and my Jack... so now I have "five Js"... and they're all gonna need me.

 

For the people that knew Rip: He was every ounce "Rip"... he had fueled the persona to the point "Rip" was an enigma... his nickname, I was told, was originally from a GI whose lap he was sitting in one night, farting... and it stuck. Ha-ha-ha. Rip really didn't like being a "Junior," although he didn't talk about it much.

 

As siblings, my brother and I had our moments of not getting along, but I gotta say we never once had a full on screaming match or fight. He was 18 years my senior... and despite that awkward age difference, always came up with something to do with his little brother when he visited as I grew up. We drew an epic KISS poster during which he taught me drawing techniques. He took me on a breakneck 30 mile snowmobile ride all the way to Owl's Head in a blizzard during which he taught me how to really lean into the turns. He made custom car models with me showing me how to whittle the pieces into new designs. He brought me a harmonica and taught me the blues... And when I got older, he showed up and was a roadie for my band in Boston. 

 

My mom remarked once how people always say nice things about you once you are gone, no matter what. None of us are perfect, and Rip was no exception. He had his good parts and his bad. He was complicated. He could be as intense as da Vinci when he was painting, and as simple as a little boy when doing his slot cars. At his worst, he was grumpy, messy, and quite capable of holding a grudge. His bark was worse than his bite, thank God. At his best, his intense attention to detail slammed into his talent, and birthed work that blew away the layman and the learned. He was incredibly talented... the definition of gifted. 

 

The truth is, he was a hard act to follow. I would not be anything even resembling the person I am without having had Rip as my older brother. My artistic ability, my ability to get through damn near anything, my insatiable desire to know how things work, my sense of humor... how hard I pushed myself to be the best musician I could be... the way I love a woman... all Rip.

 

I'm sorry for those that are missing him now, I know how much he loved Marie, Chuck, Les, Dave, Bruce & Kathy, Warren, Ren, and many others I just can't think of now, as well as some I never knew. Take solace knowing his final weeks were filled with love. His love, Marie, stood by him, nursed him, caringly holding his hand all along the way. My profile picture I have had these past months here was from a loving jam session we had for him weeks ago, and my love Maria snapped the shot. I put it up as my silent "hang in there" to my bro, another symbol of the hope he would heal. It was all love...

 

This is the last of what I will say here about this subject... now I have to heal... we all do. 

 

He was Rip Barnes... my brother... and I will truly, truly miss him."

 

rip2.jpg


Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap






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