He was the son of General Hamilton P. Bee and Mildred M. Tarver. His father referred to him as our first born and best beloved, my knightly and chivalric son. Young Barnard was devoted to his family. He was educated at the Texas Military Institute in Austin, Texas.
Barnard fell from a horse while moving some cattle for transport to the Nueces and was fatally injured. The horse sunk his foot in a deep rut, throwing his rider on his head. Barnard, who was insensible after the fall, was taken to the hotel in Taylor. From there he was transported on a mattress to the home of his parents in San Antonio where he died about a week later without ever waking from his coma.
He was buried in a beautiful cemetery near Seguin on the San Geronimo where many of his mother's relatives were buried.