Dr. T. Barry Buermann Obituary
A Fellow Faculty Member Reflects
by Dr. Timothy R. Dzierba
On Saturday May 15, 1999, the Medaille community was saddened to hear of the
untimely death of Dr T. Barry Buermann who suffered a massive heart
attack at approximately 1:00 AM.
Dr T. Barry Buerman joined the Medaille faculty in 1976 following a
very prestigious early academic career. Born in the St Louis area,
he earned an MA degree from the University of North Carolina at
Chapel Hill and his PhD from the English Department at the
University of Illinois in 1967. In that year, Barry presented his
dissertation entitled: "Chaucer's Book of Genesis in the Canterbury
Tales." Dr Buerman's educational experiences included a Woodrow
Wilson Fellowship and a SUNY Research Grant.
Dr T. Barry Buermann's work experience is equally impressive. He was
an instructor of English for the United States Air Force Academy
from 1964 to 1974. As an Assistant Professor of Humanities at
Medaille College, Barry developed courses in basic composition skills,
computer communications, literature and Chaucer.
As Director of the Computer Complex at Medaille, Dr Buermann
developed an interactive, microcomputer-based, on-line Management
Information System for the College's major administrative offices
as well as courses in microcomputers, and computer education.
As a guest lecturer at the Millard Fillmore College in Buffalo,
Barry taught courses in FORTRAN and COBOL programming.
Barry Buermann was a dedicated faculty member at Medaille serving
as chairperson of Humanities and Computer Information Systems. He
contributed substantially to a plethora of college committees and
was Acting Academic Dean in the late eighties. He will be deeply
missed for his characteristic Mr Spock -like (Star Trek) objective
analysis of any issue. Barry was an honorable gentleman with strict
ethical and moral convictions.
As a colleague, personal friend and tennis partner for twenty years,
I will miss Barry for the remainder of my life. At times Barry would
frustrate me. I could never understand why he would show up 5 to 10
minutes late for a tennis match at Sportsplex when we rented a
court by the hour. And yet Barry managed to be on time in the summer
months when the courts were free. After tennis, Barry and I would
have ice cream and chat either about our classes, gossip, or such
topics as computers and virtual reality. My most memorable
experiences with Barry involved going to the Renaissance Festival in
Sterling, New York listening to him talk medieval English with
actresses posing as wenches. My beagle, Tippy, must be wondering why
Barry isn't parking his auto wreck in our driveway anymore. Every
Friday morning, Tippy would wait hours for Barry's arrival sitting
by the front window. She would greet Barry and then run around the
entire property barking in joy. Barry and Tippy had a special bonding
when on one Christmas morning Barry gave Tippy a Christmas gift to
I actually miss Barry's old car dripping oil and transmission fluid
on my freshly sealed blacktop. Oh my God!!! I am actually saying that!
I must really miss him!!!
Thank you Barry for your friendship and love..you will always be
in my heart and thoughts. Your fifth generation computer friend also
T.Barry Buermann, PhD
Captain, U S Air Force