My Pops

My grandfather, Dr. John T. Barrett and otherwise known as "Pops" to his wife of almost 69 years, 5 children, 12 grandchildren, 6 great grandchildren, 2 nephews, 1 niece and the lucky few who knew him as a father or grandfather-in-law, passed away on Tuesday, January 26th after almost 93 years. Here is his obituary from the Providence Journal, which my father put together:

[You can see what a smiley man he was.]

BARRETT, DR., JOHN T., of Medway Place in Providence passed away peacefully at home on January 26, 2010, in his 93rd year, surrounded by his loving family. He is survived by Mary Eyre Sisson Barrett 'Puss', his wife of 68 1/2 years.

He was born June 11, 1917, in Lewisville, Indiana, the son of Ruth (Telfer) and the Rev. Maurice E. Barrett, who served for many years as the minister of Washington Park Methodist Church in Providence.

He graduated from Classical High School, Brown University and Boston University Medical School. He served in the Army Medical Corps during WW II in the European Theatre and again during the Korean Conflict.

He was in the private practice of pediatrics at 122 Waterman St. from 1949-1990, in association with Dr. Henry Utter, Dr. Wilson Utter, Dr. Robert Lord, Jr., and Dr. Judith Shaw.

While a student, he authored a paper entitled 'The Smallpox Inoculation Controversy in Puritan New England,' for which he was awarded the Sir William Osler Medal, the first such medal presented by the American Association for the History of Medicine. He received the W.W. Keen Award for distinguished service to the Brown Medical School.

He served as the Rhode Island Chairman of the March of Dimes campaign in 1957 to end polio and for that service was recognized by Brown Medical School along with Dr. Jonas Salk in 1982. He helped establish the Program in Medical Education which later became the Brown Medical School and was a Clinical Professor of Pediatrics from its earliest days.

He simultaneously served as Pediatrician-in-Chief at the RI Hospital and at the Lying-In (Women's and Infants') Hospital.

In middle age he took up golf and became a master of the short game. Fellow competitors will remember him rolling in ridiculous putts to extend or win matches with pipe clenched between his teeth. For many years he served a summer stint as camp doctor at Cragged Mountain Farm in Freedom NH. He was the school doctor for Lincoln and Moses Brown Schools.

He was especially proud of his summer garden at the family cottage in Hope RI, where he kept the tables full with zucchini, tomatoes, and pole beans. He enjoyed giving away his homegrown pumpkins inscribed with the recipients' initials. He and Puss were formidable bridge players and he remained active in the ACBL until the last days of his life.

He was 'ever true to Brown' and served as President of Class of 1939, often hosting gatherings at his home. He rarely missed attending, or later in life listening to, the football games. He was a member of the Friday Night Medical Club, the Hope Club, and Agawam Hunt.

He will be remembered for his unflappable manner and a subtle sense of humor. His family has been blessed by his patriarchy and we know that he is a rare man who will live in our hearts forever.

Besides his wife, he leaves his children and their spouses. William S. Barrett of Freedom NH and his children, Joshua and Jameson; John T. Jr. and Jane W.A. Barrett of Rehoboth and their four children, Abigail B. Bloom, Emily G., John T. IIII, and Eliza W. Barrett; Charles S. and Allison K. Barrett of Providence and Coventry and their children, Amy and CB Barrett; Margaret B. and Steve Holzman of Hurley NY and their children, Sarah H. Kelly and David Holzman; Elizabeth B. and Dennis Johnson of Nevada City CA and their children, Elisha and Miriam Johnson. He is survived by 6 great grandchildren. He also leaves nephews Tim and Rob Barrett; Larry, Bob and Stuart Rider and niece Susan Rider Rittling. He was brother of the late Robert Barrett.

His family will receive friends on Friday at Bethany Home, 111 S. Angell St, Providence, from 5 to 7pm. A Quaker memorial service will be held on Saturday at 11 AM at Moses Brown School's Sinclair Room.
Donations in his memory may be made to Hasbro Children's Hospital, Development Office, Box H, Providence, RI 02901 and will be deeply appreciated. Condolences may be left at
At this link, notes from his former patients - they are wonderful to read:

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a remarkable fellow... condolences to your family.