Barbara Bennet Hancock Hart, 85, of Redding, formerly of Darien and Westport, passed away peacefully on Oct 7.
A resident of Fairfield County for most of her life, Barbara was born in Stamford on Dec. 5, 1931, the daughter of Robert Hadley and Alice Braislin Bennet.
She was raised in Darien, where she rode horses and was a champion sailor at Noroton Yacht Club. Barbara was a proud alumna of New Canaan Country School, the Thomas School for Girls (now King School), and Wells College (class of ’54), where she majored in economics and was the founder and president of the sailing club.
As a young wife and mother, Barbara moved several times before settling in Westport, where she was a member of New Neighbors, and a charter member of its subsequent spin-off, the Gourmet Club; the Westport Woman’s Club, where she chaired the Yankee Craft Fair for several years; and Y’s Women.
In addition to holding jobs in finance, Mrs. Hart was an active volunteer— as a Girl Scout leader and trainer; as PTA president; with the Junior League, where she served as an officer and a wetlands guide; and at her beloved Christ & Holy Trinity Church, where she was a member of the Altar Guild and led the making of palm crosses every year until her death.
— an obituary from Harding Funeral Home
Mrs. Hart was predeceased by husbands Reginald F. Hancock, Jr. in 1978 and William J. Hart, Jr. in 2014.
She is survived by her brother, David S. Bennet (Naomi) of Aptos, Calif.; two daughters, Priscilla Hancock (Kenneth Dougherty) of New York City and Pamela Hancock Kinsey (the Rev. Kevin) of Fort Fairfield, Maine; five stepchildren, Elizabeth Menikheim and Angela Katherine Hart, both of Linthicum, Md., W. James Hart, III (Jeanne) of Gettysburg, Pa., Margaret Hart Rynshall (Paul) of Egg Harbor Township, N.J., and Mary Ellen Hart Campbell of Wilton; eleven grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and numerous friends and loved ones, all of whom will remember her kind and loving spirit.
Calling hours will take place on Friday, Oct. 13, from 4 to 7 p.m. in the Chapel at Christ & Holy Trinity Church, 75 Church Lane, Westport. Friends are invited to attend the funeral, also at Christ & Holy Trinity, on Saturday, Oct. 14 at 2 p.m., with a reception immediately following. Interment will be at the Christ & Holy Trinity Cemetery, Kings Highway, Westport.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Wells Fund, Wells College, 170 Main Street, Aurora, NY 13026 or to Christ & Holy Trinity Church, 75 Church Lane, Westport, CT 06880.
Condolences for the family may be left online at the funeral home website.