August "Gus" E. Barrett
November 16, 1928 – November 27, 2019
August (Gus) Ervin Barrett, age 91, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his loving family, on Wednesday, November 27, 2019. He was looking heavenward, being greeted by loved ones on the other side.
Gus was born at home on November 16, 1928 in Shelby Co., Illinois. He was the youngest of 6 children born to Joseph and Hilda (Anderson) Barrett. He attended a one room school house for grades 1-8, where he advanced in his education quickly. He moved to Washington State when he was 14 years old and began attending Clover Park High School. During his teenage years he really enjoyed his friendships with Lee and Ted Axtell, Kenny Coats, and Greg Loomis. He was on the Steilacoom City basketball team that did very well. He enjoyed ice skating, running, and working at the PX at Fort Lewis Military Base in Washington.
He graduated in 1943 at 16 years of age, and went on to work at the Navy base in Lakewood, Washington, overseeing large machinery. In June 1948 he and his best friend Lee Axtell joined the Washington National Guard where he spent the most of his career. In 1956 he joined with business partner Ken Harse, and ran a Richfield Service Station. After 2 years, he returned to the National Guard and spent his first years at Camp Murray in the Tacoma, Washington area. In 1968 he transferred to the Yakima Firing Center and in 1985 he transferred back to Camp Murray. He retired 5 years later with an honorable discharge as a Command Sergeant Major.
He married his sweetheart Donna Joanna Barrett on May 24, 1952 in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Tacoma, WA. They first lived in Steilacoom, where their first child, George, was born. After moving to Parkland, children Debbie and Danny joined the family. June 1957 brought a move to Tacoma where Connie, Carrie, and Tammie were added. When he was transferred to the Yakima Firing Center in 1968, they moved to Selah, Washington. They celebrated their 67th wedding anniversary in May 2019. He served many years in the Boy Scouts of America, had many different callings in the Church, including being a temple worker and serving a service mission, and worked as an AARP safe driving teacher. He enjoyed bowling, square and round dancing, watching sports, camping, boating, and supporting his kids and grandchildren in their many activities. Gus fulfilled a special wish of cruising thru the Panama Canal with his family in October 2017.
Gus is survived by his best friend and wife, Donna, his children Debbie (Chuck) Caruthers, Dan Barrett, Connie (Mark) Soptich, Carrie (Lee) Soptich, and Tammie (Loren) Bonsen, 34 very special grandchildren, 72 great-grandchildren, and several wonderful nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be Friday, December 6, 2019 from 4:00-8:00 pm at Keith & Keith Funeral Home (please don’t bring your little ones). Graveside service at Terrace Heights Memorial Park will be Saturday, December 7 at 10:00 am. Funeral service will follow at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Selah at 11:30 am.
Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.keithandkeith.com.
- Visitation Friday, December 6, 2019
- Graveside Service Saturday, December 7, 2019
- Memorial Service Saturday, December 7, 2019
August "Gus" E. Barrett
December 4, 2019
Thank you First Sergeat! First Sergeant Barrett was my first First Sergeant, and after 25 years in the Guard, and almost 20 years or retirement I have found few his equal.