Irving Jay Barrish, Ph.D. Overland Park, Kansas passed away peacefully, surrounded by family on Wednesday, February 7, 2007 after a courageous and inspiring battle with Pancreatic Cancer. Services will be held Friday, February 9, 2007 at 11:30am at Beth Torah Temple, 6100 W. 127th St. in Overland Park, Kansas followed by burial at Mt. Moriah Cemetary, 10507 Holmes Road in Kansas City, Missouri.
He was preceded in death by his father, Joseph Barrish; mother, Betty Barrish Nadlman; and stepfather Charles Nadlman. He is survived by his wife of almost 40 years, Harriet H. Barrish, Ph.D.; son Brad Barrish of Venice, California; son, Jonas Barrish of Kansas City, Missouri; and daughter Brandy Barrish of Overland Park. He also leaves behind a wonderful extended family of cousins and many friends as well as his long-time colleague, Gerald H. Vandenberg, Ph.D., and his very special secretary of over twenty-six years, Jeanne Harmon.
Jay was born on September 11, 1945 in Kansas City, Missouri and attended Southwest High School. He received his B.S., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Kansas. He was a well-known and respected psychologist in private practice in Leawood, Kansas. In addition to his practice, he taught over the years at a number of area universities, colleges, and hospitals including the University of Kansas, UMKC, Rockhurst, Ottawa University, Johnson County Community College and Shawnee Mission Medical Center. He also wrote numerous professional articles, consulted, presented papers, and co-authored two books with his wife. He was a Supervisor and Associate Fellow of the Albert Ellis Institute in New York. He was a pioneer in cognitive-behavioral psychology and one of the area’s early therapists to introduce behavioral and cognitive-behavioral psychology to the clinical setting. He belonged to numerous professional organizations and devoted his private time to his family and organizations that supported civil liberties, diversity, and social justice.
His passions included his family, his sons and daughter, his wife, his pets Brutus, Teddy and Kitty, grand-dogs, animals, sports, and gardening. He often fed, rescued and tended to a multitude of creatures. He loved working out, seeing friends, and was a proud vegetarian. He was an encyclopedia of sports facts, figures, and trivia. He loved to read for both pleasure and learning. He loved laughing at “Seinfeld” episodes and rockin’ to music in his car.
Jay was always available to family, friends, and clients for advice, support, and encouragement. He had a gift for socializing and getting to know people. Those who knew him were often amazed at how people gravitated to him and told them their life stories. He will be remembered and cherished for love, laughter, strength, support, counsel, intelligence, wisdom, commitment, and random acts of kindness. He was dearly loved and will be terribly missed by many, but will live on in their hearts and memories.
The family wishes to thank family and friends for all of their support, caring, and love; Dr. Robert Belt, Laura, Cathy, and the rest of the wonderful staff at The Kansas City Cancer Center; Dr. John Helzberg; Johns Hopkins University; The University of Chicago; Kansas City Hospice and Palliative Care; and Rabbi Mark Levin.
In Lieu of flowers, contributions are suggested to PanCAN, Congregation Beth Torah Social Justice Committee, Operation WildLife, Harvesters, The Humane Society of Greater Kansas City – Gabriel’s Fund, or an organization or charity of your choice.