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Barbara (Shade) Sinnah - Yovonie

October 5, 1943 — January 24, 2023

Barbara (Shade) Sinnah - Yovonie

Barbara (Shade) Sinnah Yovonie went home to be with the Lord on January 24, 2023

A tribute service is planned for Wednesday from 5-7pm at Henderson's Funeral Home

Homegoing services will be held Thursday at 11 at Mt. Olive Baptist Church.

Barbara Jean Sinnah-Yovonie, 79, of Des Moines, IA went to be with the Lord on January 24, 2023. She was surrounded by loved ones on her journey home.

Barbara was born on October 5, 1943 first then followed by her twin brother Eugene Shade to George Shade Sr. and Margaret Shade; in Des Moines, IA. Barbara accepted the Lord at an early age. She loved Jesus and was not afraid to let anyone know it. Barbara was a member of Mt. Olive Missionary Baptist Church. She was a member of the choir, a deaconess and a lifelong devout servant.

After graduating from Des Moines North High School in 1963, in 1968 Barbara worked her first job at Methodist Hill (The Ronald McDonald’s House on 1212 Pleasant) as a Nurse Assistant. She worked as a Nurse’s Assistant for over 30 years in Africa and the USA. She last worked at Ramsey Convalescent Home for about 15 years, where she retired.

In 1973, Barbara met her husband, Charles Sinnah-Yovonie at Iowa Methodist Hospital where they both worked. In 1974, they got married and went on to have 3 children, Musudeen (Damon), Charles Jr (Jamie). and Christopher (Famatta). From those children, she had her grandchildren, Aziza, Damon Jr, Deandre, Dashelle, Brittany, Jaimelle, Cyrus, Amina, Jessica and soon to be born, Baby boy Chris. Barbara adored her children and grandchildren, she was always so proud of all of their accomplishments, but what she did not realize is, their success was a testament to who she was as a woman and a mother. Her strength, power, resilience and love, is what allowed them to flourish and accomplish all that they did.

Although Barbara only had three children of her own, she was a mother figure and caretaker for her 12 brothers and sisters. Barbara loved being an older sister. She looked after and protected every single one of them until her last breath. Barbara’s siblings were her built-in best friends. You would rarely see her without her brothers and sisters. Amongst the sisters, it was known that one did not do anything without the other.

Anyone that knew Barbara, knew that she was larger than life. She was love, she was light and with her outgoing and “fighter” spirit, she was widely known as the Matriarch of the family, following her mother. She spread her love and impact when she spent 10 years living in Sierra Leone, West Africa with her husband and children. She appreciated her time in Africa and grew to love the culture, as well as strengthened her appreciation for life and family.

You rarely caught Barbara without a smile; she was constantly spreading love to everyone that she came across. You could not enter a room and acknowledge her presence without her lovingly getting on you. Barbara was very vocal and loved to speak her mind. But no one minded, everyone loved “Aunt Barbara”. You could often catch Barbara singing one of her favorite gospel songs or humming. She loved Jesus and was not afraid to let anyone know it.

Serving others was what Barbara loved to do, she did not let a holiday go by without calling loved ones or sending a card. She had a very good memory and made sure she would make everyone feel loved on their special day. There wasn't an event that Barbara would miss, because she loved celebrating her loved ones. If you have ever visited Barbara’s home, you would see she loved her family. Her walls were infinitely decorated with photos of her family around her home. If you ever gave her a picture, she would proudly display it in her home.

Barbara was filled with infinite wisdom and lessons. Barbara had a saying “Corner to Corner”, which meant to have resources in all “4 corners” so that if you were ever in need, you could go to one of the corners and take care of your need. She made sure to note to never forget the “God Bless Corner”.

Barbara was predeceased by her father, George (Man) and Margaret Shade; sons, Ronnie Shade and Floyd Shade, Paternal grandparents, James Shade and Leona Carpenter: Maternal grandparents, Garnette Cheatham and Veatta Cross.

She is survived by all of her children and grandchildren as listed above; and Dixie (Ronnie’s Wife) Shade, her siblings, Eugene Shade, George (Marji) Shade, Tim (Debbie) Shade, Raymond Shade, Rickie (Patricia) Shade, Vanessa Shade, Veatta Shade, Jennifer (Alfred) Butts and Marlene Shade; bonus sister, Donna Douglas Henderson; her other son, Shayne Shade; and a host of nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews and many friends.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Barbara (Shade) Sinnah - Yovonie, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Wednesday, February 1, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm

Henderson's Highland Park Funeral Home

3500 6th Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50313

Tribute service

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am

Henderson's Highland Park Funeral Home

3500 6th Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50313

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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