Barry Godwin | Obituary | Record Eagle

February 23, 1945

Barry George Godwin, 76 years old, of Traverse City, died on Thursday, September 16, 2021, surrounded by his loving family.
Barry was born on February 23, 1945 to the late George Godwin and Mildred (Schmidt) Godwin in Saginaw.
From a young age, Barry was the life of the party. He staged plays in the family garage, organized groups of friends for swimming parties and generally didn’t want to miss a minute of fun. He loved his little sister Barb, with whom he always had a special bond. Everyone knew him for his infectious humor, compassion and positive outlook on life. He had a welcoming smile and the phenomenal ability to focus a conversation on the other person then saved his or her name, family, birthday, anniversary, or other details for future reference. Everyone he met became his friend.
Barry graduated from Arthur Hill High School in Saginaw, where he became a lifelong circle of friends. They met every summer and were reunited in Traverse City that August. He also had a close group of friends and family in Saginaw whom he called “The Nut Cup Society,” a nod to the small bowls of nuts that were shared at their children’s birthday parties. While living in Saginaw, Barry was President of the Saginaw Art Museum and a member of the Saginaw Club.
A proud Michigan State graduate, he pursued a passion for hospitality and marketing throughout his career. His first job was at the reception in the early days of The Kingdom of Schuss Mountain, receiving the title of Admiral Barry, who was in charge of the flotilla of imaginary boats in the moat to protect the kingdom. He and some colleagues were known as “rinky dinks” who sang and danced for guests.
He returned to Saginaw to work in the family business for several years, but his desire to live and work in Northern Michigan pulled him back. He joined Shanty Creek in sales and marketing, where he was known throughout the state for promoting conventions, skiing, and golf. He enjoyed staying at The Homestead in Glen Arbor before moving back to Shanty Creek. After leaving Shanty Creek, he continued to use his talents and started The Godwin Group, a local marketing consultancy. Throughout his career, Barry has held various positions promoting the hospitality industry and Northern Michigan. He has served as president of Circle Michigan, the Grand Traverse Area Hotel Motel Association, the Traverse Area Arts Council, and the Antrim County Chapter of the Michigan State Alumni Association.
In 1974 Barry married his “Funny Girl”, Nancy Breitmayer. Together they enjoyed traveling, skiing, entertaining, collecting art and raising their daughter Libby. She was the bright light in both of their lives.
During the summer, Barry was a fixture at Torch Lake Yacht and Country Club, TLYCC and across Bellaire. He often started his day with a coffee in town and made friends who became like family. Over the years he served as a board member of TLYCC and planned numerous regatta parties – most recently for the NCESA National Regatta. He was also known for the “ice cream cone for a piece of beach glass” arrangement with the children. His presence on the porch is sorely missed by everyone.
Barry had an amazing network of friends in Traverse City. He was a noted and beloved guest across town including Edson Farms, That’s a Pizza, Boon Street Car Wash, Bulldog’s Barber Shop, The Gym, and Burger King, where he loved the $ 0.75 senior coffee. The streets of Traverse City won’t be the same without the silver Honda rider with the TLYCC Burgee driving through town.
Barry leaves behind his daughter Elizabeth (Theodore) Tubekis; and his granddaughter Breitmayer Godwin Tubekis; his sister Barbara Godwin-Chulick; his niece Emily Godwin-Chulick; and his nephew Samuel George Godwin-Chulick. Barry is also survived by many other family members and friends who were like family.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Nancy Breitmayer Godwin; his brother-in-law, David A. Chulick; and his parents.
A visitation will take place on Wednesday, September 22, 2021 from 4 to 6 p.m. in the garden at Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home, 305 Sixth St. Traverse City, Michigan 49684, from 4 to 6 p.m. A funeral service in honor of Barry will also take place in the garden of the Reynolds-Jonkhoff funeral home on Thursday, September 23, 2021 at 11 a.m., with a viewing from 10 a.m. The family asks for COVID-19 vaccinations and masks for all participants. The private burial takes place in the Torch Lake Township Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for memorial donations to be made to the Dennos Museum Center, 1701 E. Front Street, Traverse City, MI 49686, or the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy, 3860 N. Long Lake Road #D, Traverse City, MI. to be directed 49684.
Please do not hesitate to share your thoughts and memories with Barry’s family on his tribute page at
The family is cared for by the Reynolds-Jonkhoff Undertaker Service.

Published on 09/22/2021

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