George Barrett

Obituary of George Edward Barrett

George Edward Barrett, "The Citizen", was born October 19, 1927 and died August 26, 2014 surrounded by his family. Barrett was born and grew up in East Nashville. He was a devout Catholic and attended Catholic schools all his life, including both Holy Name, and Father Ryan High School in Nashville, Spring Hill College, Mobile AL, Catholic Workers College in Oxford England, and finally that bastion of Protestantism, Vanderbilt University School of Law. After graduating Father Ryan High School in 1945, Barrett enlisted in the Coast Guard for WWII at the age of seventeen. He served three years in the coastguard, was honorably discharged, and enrolled in Spring Hill College, Mobile AL on the GI Bill. He served as president of the student body and received a BA in History. Spring Hill College was where George learned his life long love and value for education. From Spring Hill, he journeyed across the pond to Oxford England, where he completed his diploma in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. Following his time at Oxford, he backpacked across post-war Europe, instilling a life long love of travel. In 1954, George was accepted to study law at Vanderbilt University, where he was a member of the famed class of 1957. In 1957, he married Mary Eloise McBride of Lewisburg, TN. They had three daughters, Lucy, Mary, and Katie. George considered his daughters his greatest treasures, no small thing in a life of notable accomplishments. He delighted in his eleven grandchildren and considered them the reward for not killing his daughters. Much has been written of George's professional accomplishments. He had a heart and love for a good fight for the workingman and the underdog. He championed many unpopular causes because he knew they were just causes. His career spanned more that fifty years in Nashville, and was colorful, contentious, and always engaged. He loved it and it was apparent. George's work ethic was legendary, and he worked six days a week until his death. He started working at age twelve with a paper route to help his widowed mother and sisters, and he never stopped. He waited tables in college and painted the inside of the NES building to put him self through law school. In the end, George's greatest joy was his family and friends. He delighted in travelling with his children and succeeded in sharing the joy of Ireland with all of his grandchildren. A more loyal, generous, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend, was not to be had. He left us the way he lived; fighting the good fight until the end. He was beloved by his family and will be greatly missed. He is survived by his three daughters: Lucy (Rob) Thomason Mary (Mark) Brewer Katie (Joe) Cain and eleven grandchildren: Ben, Sam, and Annie Thomason Matthew, Sarah Kate, and Elizabeth (Miss E.) Brewer Caitlin, Emily, Ashley, Megan, and Joseph Cain a sister, Sister Mary George Barrett, O.P., and many nieces and nephews. Funeral services are as follows; Visitation; Friday August 29, 4-7 PM at the Fleming Center, Cathedral of the Incarnation, 2015 West End Avenue, Nashville. Funeral Mass; Saturday August 30, 11 AM at Cathedral of the Incarnation. Pall Bearers will be his 3 sons in law and his 4 grandsons. Wake Immediately following the Funeral until 4:30 PM at the home of Mark and Mary Brewer. 3438 Hampton Avenue, Nashville, TN. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to: The George E. Barrett Endowed Scholarship Spring Hill College 4000 Dauphin Street Mobile, AL 36608