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 www.lanefh.com to share condolences.  

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


Jordan, Wendell Sue "Tiney" Gilbert

We ndell  Sue  "Tiney"  Gilbert  Jordan , 68, of Rossville, died on Friday, February 27, 2015. She was born to the late Joseph and Mary Marie Gilbert in Chattanooga and was of the Baptist faith. Tiney was a loving mother and grandmother, who will be greatly missed. She was also preceded in death by her husband, Raymond Riley Jordan; grandson, Christopher ... (click for more)

Chambers, Ruth Stover

Ruth  Stover  Chambers , 77, of Rossville, died on Friday, February 27, 2015.  Ruth  worked for SH Kress for many years and was the organist/vocalist at Calvary Church of God and more recently at New Covenant Holiness Church in Chattanooga. She was preceded in death by her mother, Mary Denton Petitt Black. Survivors include her loving husband of 22 ... (click for more)

Gueno, Mary Lee Blackwell (Dalton)

Mary Lee Blackwell Gueno, 90,  Of Dalton, GA, passed away Friday, February 27, 2015 at Hamilton Medical Center. She was a member of Mt. Ridge Baptist Church and was preceded in death by her husband, Joseph C. Gueno; parents, William and Mary Partlow Blackwell;five brothers; and four sisters. Survivors and family will hold the Service for Mrs. Mary Lee Blackwell ... (click for more)

Byers, Virginia Maxine (Dayton)

Virginia Maxine Byers, 88, of Dayton, TN, died Thursday, February 26, 2015 at her home in Dayton. She was born May 24, 1926 in Ashland, KY to the late David Arthur and Carrie (Owsley) Fannin; and was also preceded in death by her husband; her son, David Raymond Horton; sister, May Hall; and brothers, Harry Fannin and Fred Fannin. Virginia worked at Douglas Air Craft ... (click for more)

Signal Council, Residents Concerned About Unsafe Driving En Route To Schools

The town council of Signal Mountain is dealing with a traffic problem caused by increased traffic to and from Signal Mountain Middle High School and Nolan Elementary. Mayor Dick Gee said, “This is a tough issue that we wouldn’t have to deal with if everyone would drive responsibly.” The main concern is for safety and in November the council agreed to try to fix the problem by ... (click for more)

88-Year-Old Woman In Bradley County Severely Burned After Going Back In Burning House For Pets

Two people were injured in a house fire in Bradley County on Friday.   Shortly before noon, Bradley County EMS responded to a reported house fire on Hancock Road.   Two ambulances and a shift commander responded. Initial reports were that there were two people injured. When EMS crews arrived, Bradley County firefighters were performing resuscitative ... (click for more)