Barbara Ann Hallmark’s remarkable life began on June 19, 1938 in Jones County, TX and was the oldest of six children born to A B and Margaret Cox. She had a deep sisterly and motherly love for her 5 siblings, Terry, Larry, Richie, Cheri and Lisa. Barbara received her bachelor’s degree in education and retired after teaching for many years in the Abilene Independent School District. She married Robert Keith Utter in 1958 and had many wonderful years together until his untimely passing. They were gifted with four boys, Jeff, Greg, Chris and Marc. Barbara found love again and married James Hallmark in 1981 in Abilene. Her family grew to include Mark and Jana. She had an artistic spirit and it was evident in her many projects which displayed her whimsical spirit.
Our beautiful mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister, and aunt Barbara has gone home to be with her Lord with a restored mind and body. We celebrate her life and legacy. She was linen suits and button necklaces. She was chunky amber jewelry and pantyhose for every occasion, a suitcase of cards from James and lavender soaps in every drawer. She was lounge dresses and clogs picking weeds in her garden. She was cigarettes, coffee, and deep conversation on her back porch. She was a country girl and a world traveler, the strong-willed mother of four boys, the life of every party, a silly sister, and the adventurer at James’ side. She was an open door to all, a home for the homeless, and rest for the weary. She was full of grace, put-you-in-your-place, don’t stop the race, and place your hope in Jesus. She never shied from prying too deep or saying exactly what was on her mind. She was the matriarch to our magnificent mess, and we are fumbling a little without her. But we know that now she is once again vibrant and full of life and probably throwing one of her famous luaus in the presence of her King.
Barbara’s spirit lives on in her loving family. Through her participation in the Emmaus and recovery communities Barbara touched many lives and made many friends.
Barbara was also preceded in death by her brother, Terry Cox.
A celebration of this remarkable woman’s life will be held on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 at 11 AM at the Elmwood Funeral Home Chapel. Interment will follow at Elmwood memorial Park. There will be a visitation with the family on Monday, October 1 from 5 to 7 PM at the funeral home.
Jeff, Greg, Chris & Marc,
We are so sorry to hear of your mother's passing. Praying for your family.
The Ben See family.
Kay SeeAbilene, TX
Our thoughts and prayers are with you in this time of sorrow in your life.. We were blessed having known Barbara she was a beautiful soul.. May the Lord be with you James and Chris and the rest of the family and friends.. Our deepest sympathies to you all!
Sharon Storey and Sharon RagleAbilene, TX
So sorry for your loss. Lots of prayers and hugs sent your way. Your mom walks with Angels and I hope that is a comforting thought. Prayers for your family as well.
Debra Sherwood & Mike ClaspillAbilene, TX
James, my heart goes out to you and your family. Barbara was a rare mixture of passion and practicality. I enjoyed so much working with her in various Emmaus projects. Much love to you and your family.
Jim GravleyAbilene, TX
We are sorry for your loss. Love to you,
Rob, Jeanne, Mary, Matt, Molly, Mead and Taco
Jeanne LarsonDallas, TX
My thoughts and prayers are with all the family at this time of your great loss
Janice SmithAbilene, TX
My sincere condolences for your loss. I hope you are able to find comfort in the scriptures at Acts 24: 15 and John 5: 28,29 which gives is resurrection hope. At Revelation 21: 3-5 God brings out that in the future there will be no more pain and suffering. And we can look forward to what is written in Psalm 37: 9-11 and 29 about the meek will possess the earth. To find more information please visit
AprilRuther Glen, VA
She will be definitely missed. I had the honor of meeting this beautiful woman years ago early on in my recovery .
Donella MorganAbilene, TX
Barbara was a lovely woman. I got to know her when we were at Highland and we had wonderful discussions about Emmaus and it's life-changing impact. God bless you sweet family as you grieve the loss of a beautiful life and influence.
Lynna Cox HaleAbilene, TX
Barbara impressed upon me many virtues that I endeavor to carry out to this day, including some priceless one-liners that my own children have now heard me say countless times. She was truly a beautiful person and I am so grateful to have spent time with her and with you all way-back-when. Much love to James, the Coxes and the Utters.
Amelie UrbanczykAlpine, TX