Francis E. Barrett, MD

Class Year




Posted on: February 18, 2019

Francis “Frank” Elwood Barrett, MD, 96 years old, passed away quietly on November 21, 2018, after two years of declining health. He was born September 22, 1922, in Irvona, Pa. He is survived by the love of his life, Ethel Halsey Barrett, of Rapidan, Va.; son, Charles Barrett and wife, Janet, of Richmond, Va.; daughter, Susan Cramer and husband, Bart, of Richmond, Va.; grandsons, Alex Barrett and Michael Barrett of Richmond, Va.; nephew, Edmund Coleman Jr. and wife, Karen, of East Bend, N.C.; and niece, Nancy Knewstep and husband, Alan, of Rapidan, Va.

Frank attended Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science for three years before being called into active duty by the Army in 1943. He received Army Specialized Training at Penn State University for a year and then he attended Medical School at the University of Virginia, where he met and married his lovely wife, Ethel. During his internship at UVA, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. When he finished his internship, he was deployed to Elmendorff Air Force Base in Anchorage, Alaska, and then to Samson AFB in Geneva, N.Y. In 1953, when discharged from the service, he relocated to Richmond, Va., for a residency in internal medicine at McGuire Veterans Hospital, where he remained as a staff physician until retiring 39 years later in 1992 as the Medical Director of the Nursing Home Care Unit. During his time at the VA hospital, he also served his country in the Army Reserve, attaining the rank of full Colonel and becoming the Commander of the 56th Station Hospital.

In addition to his professional accomplishments, he was an active member of Bon Air Presbyterian Church where he was an elder and served on various committees throughout the years. Most important to him was his family, and he treasured the time he spent with them. He made sure to be at every recital, performance and sports event in which his children and, later, his grandchildren participated. He also enjoyed the game of golf and, as any good duffer, tried to forget the bad shots and only remember the good ones like the hole-in-one that he got when 86 years young! He had one vice in life, and it was being an avid, hardcore UVA football and basketball fan, painful as it could be at times. He seldom missed a telecast or broadcast, and was a football season ticket holder for several decades.

He will be remembered for his love, wit, wisdom and balanced life. He always saw the good in people and did his best to make the world a better and happier place. He will be sorely missed by friends and family alike.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Bon Air Presbyterian Church Endowment Fund.