Face to face, Jack H. Barton was called judge.

But when he wasn't around, the people who worked for and with him, called him "JB."

"It was just an affectionate name we had for him," said Don Gettys, 70, a retired Spring Garden Township police officer. "He knew about it. We called him that because he was a great guy."

Barton, an attorney and a former district judge, died Monday, Nov. 5, at Manor Care Health Services North in York. He was 89.

He leaves his wife of more than 49 years, Gertrude Barton; three daughters, Nancy Phillips, Suzan Barton and Christiana Barton-Wasilko; a son, Brian Barton; eight grandchildren; and a great-grandchild.

Two daughters, Cindy Waltemire and Jane Barton, are deceased.

A memorial service for Barton is at 11 a.m. Friday at Union Lutheran Church, 408 W. Market St. in York City. He was a lifelong member there.

A York native, Barton graduated from William Penn Senior High School in 1941. While attending York Junior College - now York College - Barton was drafted into the U.S. Army from 1943 to 1945, serving in North Africa and Europe during World War II.

He completed his undergraduate studies at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Cumberland County, in 1951 and graduated from Dickinson School of Law in 1953. He started his law firm the next year and practiced law in York for more than 50 years.

He was admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court.


For York County he was a chief public defender, a solicitor, a recorder of deeds and a district judge for 14 years.

He also was a York City Council member and helped lead the construction project for the Memorial Ice Rink.

Former York County District Attorney Stan Rebert said he knew Barton professionally for 20 years.

"He was a fine district justice who made himself available whenever needed," Rebert said. "He was fair in decided cases before him."

Gettys said he met Barton in 1965 when his wife, now Brenda Gettys, worked as Barton's secretary. Barton attended their wedding, said Gettys, of Spring Garden Township.

"I worked with (Barton) as a police officer and a constable," he said. "He was a district judge for our area. I admired how fair he was with defendants and how well he treated the people he worked with."

A memorial service for Jack H. Barton is at 11 a.m. Friday at Union Lutheran Church, 408 W. Market St. in York City.

Visitation is from 10 to 11 a.m. at the church.

Burial will be in Prospect Hill Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease at CMTA, P.O. Box 105, Glenolden, PA 19036, or to the York County SPCA, 3159 Susquehanna Trail North, York 17406.

-Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at emcmillan@yorkdispatch.com.