Opal Wilcox Barron

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Opal Wilcox Barron
Born (1914-09-19)September 19, 1914
Boyer, West Virginia, U.S.
Died September 11, 2010(2010-09-11) (aged 95)
Greenville, South Carolina, U.S.
Nationality United States
Known for First Lady of West Virginia, 1961–1965
Spouse(s) William Wallace Barron

Opal Wilcox Barron (September 19, 1914 – September 11, 2010) was First Lady of West Virginia from 1961 to 1965. She was born in Boyer, West Virginia.[1]

She married William Wallace Barron on February 15, 1936 in Amherst, Virginia.[2] William Barron held several offices in state government before finally serving as Governor of West Virginia from 1961 to 1965, during which time Opal Barron served as First Lady, promoting the state's centennial celebration and persuading her husband to initiate a campaign to conserve the forests and beautify the state.[citation needed]

In 1962, in the heat of the Cold War, she appeared on television to inform West Virginians how to equip and supply a fallout shelter. The entire family also participated in the Sabin vaccine program to prevent polio. After leaving office, Opal and William lived in Pompano Beach, Florida and Charlotte, North Carolina.[3]

Following her husband's death, she lived in Greenville, South Carolina, where she died on September 11, 2010, shortly before her 96th birthday, following a period of declining health.[1]


  1. ^ a b "Former W.Va. first lady Opal Barron dies, 95". Charleston Gazette. September 11, 2010. Archived from the original on September 11, 2011. Retrieved September 11, 2010. 
  2. ^ "Re: Opal Wilcox Barron". Genealogy.com. Retrieved September 11, 2001. 
  3. ^ "West Virginia's First Ladies", West Virginia Division of Culture and History (June 2007)
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Hovah Hall Underwood
First Lady of West Virginia
Succeeded by
Mary Alice Tieche Smith