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Barbara Lorraine Barrett

December 5, 1930 June 12, 2019
Barbara Lorraine Barrett
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Obituary for Barbara Lorraine Barrett

Barbara Lorraine Taylor Barrett, age 88, died peacefully June 12th, 2019 after a lengthy illness. Her life centered on family, the community of St Stephen's Episcopal Church, and civic organizations including the League of Women's Voters. Barbara was born in Port Arthur Texas to Henrietta Ross Taylor and Luther Taylor. After a parental divorce, she grew up in Houston with her mother and her grandmother Henrietta Ross. Horseback riding was Barbara's favorite hobby in her teenage years and she spent most summers at a "dude ranch" in New Mexico with her mother. She was on the honor roll in high school and attended Rice University where she majored in English. Her freshman year, she met John Barrett, a graduate student in physics. They were married in 1952 and moved to Cambridge, MA where he was an MIT post-doc and Barbara continued her studies at Boston University. They lived briefly in Raleigh, NC, where their only child Deirdre was born, and in Baton Rouge, LA, before settling in Oak Ridge in 1959 where John worked at ORNL. Barbara was an enthusiastic participant in the volunteer organization which abound in Oak Ridge. She joined the League of Women Voters upon arrival and played a variety of roles: serving on the board, chairing local candidate's forums and debates, and eventually becoming President of the Oak Ridge chapter. Barbara was active in ORCMA Guild, Great Decisions, the Oak Ridge PTA, and led a Camp Fire Girls group during Deirdre's school years. At St. Stephens, Barbara served on the Ladies' Alter Guild and later ran the church's "Lunch Bunch" programs, lining up the sort of fascinating, quirky intellectual speakers unique to Oak Ridge. Barbara's vacations were mostly visiting family back in Houston and later she and Deirdre accompanied John to Gordon Research Conferences at quaint boys' prep schools, wandered the surrounding New Hampshire woods, mountains, and villages before and after the conferences. In John's retirement years, he and Barbara enjoyed ORCMA concerts, Oak Ridge Playhouse productions, and spent innumerable quiet evenings reading classic literature aloud to each other. After John's death in 2005, Barbara was fortunate to find romance again with a fellow St. Stephens parishioner, widower Charles Davis, with whom she spent several happy years until his death in 2015. Barbara's last years were at Greenfield Senior Living where she continued decades-long friendships, made new social connections, and enjoyed excellent care from Greenfield's generous and skilled staff. Barbara is survived by daughter Deirdre Barrett of Cambridge, MA. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Barbara's name to The Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research, 110 East 42nd St, 16th Floor NY, NY 10017. Her funeral will be held at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church Thursday, June 20th at 2:30pm, followed by a reception. Arrangements by Weatherford Mortuary. An on-line guest book can be signed at

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Previous Events

Memorial Service




2:30 PM 6/20/2019 2:30:00 PM
St. Stephens Episcopal Church

212 N Tulane Avenue
Oak Ridge, TN 37830

A reception will follow the Memorial Service.

St. Stephens Episcopal Church
212 N Tulane Avenue Oak Ridge 37830 TN
United States

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