Dean Barrett will celebrate his 100th birthday Saturday, September 21, 2019 at the First Christian Church Celebration Hall from 1 – 3 p.m. The party, hosted by friends, will also celebrate his wife Anna Lee’s 95th birthday. The community is invited to attend as these two lives of service are honored.
Barrett was born on September 20, 1919 in Canadian County, Oklahoma on the family farm near Hinton, the fifth of seven children. The family later moved to a farm near Calumet, where he attended twelve years of school and was his class president all four years of high school. Barrett was baptized in the North Canadian River at the age of twelve. After high school, Barrett attended Oklahoma A & M College, now Oklahoma State University, earning both a Bachelor’s degree in 1941 and a Master’s degree in 1963.
Barrett enlisted in the Air Force pilot training just prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. World War II was declared, and was commissioned a pilot, serving as an aerial gunnery Instructor and pilot instructor in Nevada & New Mexico. After the war, Barrett served in the Air Force Reserve Units at Grove, Miami, & Stillwater, was Commander of the Stillwater unit, and received the USAF Meritorious Service Medal. He retired after 30 years of active & reserve duties as a full Colonel.
Barrett married his college sweetheart Alberta Nicks of Grove in 1941 and they were blessed with four children: Ronald, twins Roger & Jim, and Susan. Barrett endured the loss of Roger just days after birth, his wife Alberta in 1982, and son Ronald in 2007. After the passing of Alberta, Barrett later visited with Anna Lee Roberts Spicer, who had also lost her husband Mitch. Their first conversations occurred at a church party; they soon married, and their conversations have continued for 36 years. Anna Lee has two sons: Greg & Mike Spicer, all life-long members of the Grove community. The combined families enjoy 8 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. Their Christian commitment over their life times is exemplary of their faith. Dean has served as Sunday School teacher & Superintendent, Treasurer, and Church Board Elder of the First Christian Church. Anna Lee has played the organ & piano, sang in the Choir, and taught Sunday School at the First Baptist Church. These lives of service for so many years are to be commended.
Barrett's careers have included teaching agricultural classes through Oklahoma State University, Delaware County Farm Agent, Rural Development Specialist through OSU, and ranching. He served as president of the Oklahoma County Agents Association in 1963 and was selected as outstanding agent of Oklahoma in 1960-61 after making Delaware County the first in Oklahoma to be brucellosis free. Anna Lee has been a homemaker and has given piano lessons to many Grove students.
Their contributions to this community have been many. Barrett has served as a charter member of Grove Kiwanis, serving as president and he helped to start the Kiwanis Kids Park. His membership & leadership in Grove Rotary, Cowskin Prairie Community Group, Grove Cooperative, Ambulance Board, Farm Bureau Board, Delaware County Agricultural Stabilization Board, and Bank of Grove Board all attest to his commitment to this community and its well being. Anna Lee’s dedication to her family, students, Grove Ridgerunner football, and her church make her respected and admired by all who meet her.
This celebration of milestone birthdays will be a testament to two lives so well lived .