Queen Barbara Buxton was born in Bend, on hospital hill in 1929. Her father’s family was among the early founders of the town of Hermiston and her mother’s father came to Oregon, in a wagon in 1851.
Our Queen’s mother died, when our queen was only 13 months old and her older sister, was only 6 years of age. The two little girls were raised in Bend by their father, Dr. Grant Skinner, alone through the Depression and World War II years. Her father was one of the only two dentists in Bend, when he arrived in town in 1919, after graduation from University of Oregon Dental School, then known as Pacific Dental College.
She attended Bend High School, where she was active in the Torch Honor Academic Honorary, a Cappella choir, and tumbling team. While in high school, she worked at the Tower Theatre as an usherette and cashier, during the summer.
After graduating from Bend High in 1947, she took Red Cross training in Benbow Lake, Washington to be a swimming instructor and taught the Red Cross swimming lessons that summer at the pool in Redmond (Because Bend had no pool). In the fall of that year, she entered the University of Oregon where she met and married her first husband.
Her first job, while married was with the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company in Eugene. She later worked for West Coast Telephone in Reedsport and the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company in Bend, both in the traffic and business office. After moving to California, she worked as a sales accounting supervisor for a snack food company.
Queen Barbara moved back to Bend in 1974 and worked for a local accounting firm as office administrator until her retirement.
She is a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Telephone Pioneers Association, the Ladies of Elks (President 1989-1991 and Lady Elk of the year 1996-1997), a life member of the Sons and Daughters of Oregon Pioneers. Our Queen also served on the Camp Fire Girls Board of Directors for 13 years and currently serves of the Deschutes Historical Society Board of Directors (four years) and has been the chairperson of the membership committee of the Deschutes Pioneers Association for 18 years. She was also a voumteer as a SMART Reader in the Bend public schools.
Her first marriage produced four children and seven grandchildren. She was married to Ken Buxton of Bend from 1992 until his death in 2005.