VanCura, Barry

Founder And Executive Director Of Ballet Tennessee

Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Barry VanCura
Barry VanCura

Barry VanCura, 64, of Chattanooga, passed away suddenly on Friday, January 11, 2013, doing what he loved – preparing for his ballet students.  

As founder and executive director of Ballet Tennessee, he was a gifted choreographer of musical theater, opera, classical and contemporary ballet.  He had won numerous awards for his works and had been the instructor for the Stage Dance Course at Covenant College. 

He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts, with major in ballet, at North Carolina School of the Arts.  A native of Cicero, Illinois, Barry began his career in Chicago and his professional credits include Eglevsky Ballet of New York, Chicago Ballet and Lyric Opera Ballet, Indianapolis Ballet Theater, Milwaukee and Tucson Ballet.  One of his most noted local works is “The Nutcracker” presented each Christmas.

As important as awards are, people were more important to Barry.  He was a loving husband and co-instructor, father and family man who enjoyed making people laugh and making them reach for what might seem impossible.  His students are a testimony to what can be accomplished through hard work, dedication, training, discipline and passion.  Many of Barry and Anna’s students have made great achievements in ballet.  Their mission statement reflects their feeling that everyone, regardless of situation, should have the opportunity to learn or watch professional ballet.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Eleanor Knize VanCura; daughter-in-law, Colleen Malloy-Reinert; and nephew, Jason Herman.

Barry is survived by his wife, Anna VanCura; children, Victoria Kathleen VanCura, Anthony Reinert and Ana (Robert L. Atkins) Reinert; sister, Kathleen (Jim) Herman; sister-in-law, Penny (J. R.) Kurowski; nieces and nephews, Jack (Karen) Herman, Kellee Byrd, Tami (Gregg )Newman; great-niece and nephew, Hayley Herman and Anthony Byrd; his other “children”, Laurel Shastri, Fredrick Davis, Brittany Johnson-Mills, Joseph Lynch, Forrest Lewis and Barry’s extended family of Ballet Tennessee.  

Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 17, at Lane Funeral Home, 601 Ashland Terrace.  

A memorial service will be at 6 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 18, at First Presbyterian Church, McCallie Avenue with Rev. J.R. Caines officiating. 

Memorial contributions may be made to Ballet Tennessee, 3202 Kelly’s Ferry Road, Chattanooga, Tn. 37419.  

Please visit to share condolences.  

Arrangements are by Lane Funeral Home, Ashland Terrace, 877-3524.

Grover, John A.

John A. Grover, 92, of Hixson, Tennessee, died on Friday, October 2, 2015. He had recently said “They say the return is sweeter”.  John was born in Cheshire, Ohio on Oct. 27, 1922 to parents, John Alexander and Edith  Ethel (Yeauger) Grover. He served three years in the European Theatre during WWII in the 225 Army Anti Aircraft (AAA) Battalion, earning four Bronze ... (click for more)

Smiley, Jimmy Daniel

Jimmy Daniel Smiley, 78, died on October 3, 2015. He was a native of Lyerly, Ga., but had lived in Chattanooga for over 50 years. He was a member of East Lake Masonic Lodge #698, a veteran of the U.S. Army and a retired boilermaker after 30 years. He was of the Baptist faith. He was preceded in death by his mother, Jesse Smiley; sisters, Elsie Sullivan and Farris Compton. ... (click for more)

Bice, Johnny E. (Dunlap)

Johnny E. Bice, 68, of Dunlap and formerly of Soddy Daisy, died on Monday, October 5, 2015. Johnny was retired from TVA, and was a member of the Vietnam Veterans, Local #846. He is survived by his wife, Glenda J. Bice; son, Jason Bice and family; step-son, Jonathan Peterson and family; step-daughters, Kim Illey and family and Laurie Curls and family; one brother and two sisters; ... (click for more)

Dyer, Frances Martha (Dalton)

Frances Martha Dyer, 70, of Dalton, Georgia, died on Sunday, October 4, 2015 at the local hospital. Frances was born Feb. 22, 1945 in Murphy, NC to the late Ross and Virgie Green Hedden; and was also preceded in death by her sister, Pauline Hedden; and brothers, Hilyard Hedden, Archie Hedden, Ronnie Hedden and Beecher Hedden. She is survived by her husband of over 53 years, ... (click for more)

Legislative Hearing On Volkswagen Emissions Scandal To Be Held In Chattanooga Oct. 29; Haslam To Visit VW Plant Wednesday

The Senate Finance, Ways and Means Committee’s Appropriation Subcommittee will be conducting a hearing in Chattanooga to review the financial impact on the state from Volkswagen’s violation of U.S. emissions standards. The meeting will be held at the Hamilton County Department of Education, 3074 Hickory Valley Road, on Thursday, Oct. 29, from 1:30-3:30 p.m.  Members ... (click for more)

Bradley County Commission Decides Not To Provide Animal Pickup Service

Bradley County Commissioners on Monday finally put animal control to rest. It was not easy and it was not without confusion, but in the end, the county will not provide animal pickup service. Confusion began when commissioners were asked to approve the agenda, which included two options for animal control pick up. Item “D” provided for the SPCA of Bradley County to pick ... (click for more)