Complexity wrapped in a simple human container. That was Darrell Barton.

Born in Crossett, Arkansas, in early 1942, Darrell had simple and solid values. His childhood memories included driving the family’s horse drawn vegetable wagon into town. Darrell’s family moved to Kansas where his photography career began. As a youngster Darrell asked his father for a camera for Christmas. He began taking still pictures and aspired to work for Life Magazine. His father told him photography would be a fine hobby but he should think about getting a real job.

Although he tried other things, Darrell stayed behind a lens. One day he thought it would be a good idea to join the United States Marine Corps. It was peacetime. Over coffee and donuts, the recruiter promised Darrell that he could be a photographer. Barton went to Viet Nam, not as a photographer, but as a Marine in Combat. Like Darrell, Marine Corps values were simple and solid. Back in the states and back to the camera, Barton enrolled in college. Soon after he entered the world of television news. Programs like 60 Minutes and 48 Hours showcased his talent. His stories became legend, as did he.

Darrell Barton’s brilliance showed in his work and in his life. He had a unique eye that saw things differently than most. He made difficult look easy and told complicated stories in simple and eloquent ways.

Darrell Barton

Darrell Barton

Below the rough exterior, Darrell was a compassionate man. Returning home after tragic events, he looked for ways to make lives better. With that spirit, it is clear that Darrell Barton would not want to limit his legacy to just one organization. His interests spanned from his passion and profession of still and video photojournalism, to building old cars, to archaic farming, to being a cornerstone at the local farmer’s market and to all things in between.

Darrell helped anyone and everyone. He saw second chances as good things. He valued unvarnished truth.

The Darrell Barton Foundation is designed to make a difference anywhere a difference needs to be made.