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A family dedicated to serve

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SHERRY LONG
The Ellis County Press
FERRIS - The Barrett family has a patriotic pride three generations strong.

PFC James Barrett, a third-generation solider, graduated from the U.S. Army's Infantry boot camp at Fort Benning, Ga. on June 2. He signed up for military service after graduating from Hardin Simmons University in Abilene with a bachelor's degree in police science in December 2005.

'He felt a strong sense of obligation because other generations have done that,' his mother Cheree Barrett said.

With the Iraq War still being fought, she said she was afraid of her only son joining the military, but that his father and he had discussed it at length prior to James Barrett signing up.

His father, current Ferris City Councilman Rick Barrett, served on active duty in the U.S. Navy from 1972-1975 while serving as a captain's helmsman, boats winmate and on the security forces division.

Following his active duty service, Barrett, 52, continued serving his country by becoming a member of the U.S. Naval reserves until his retirement as a Sr. Chief in 2004.

'Rick told him not to do it for family obligation,' Cheree said.

'He needed to do it for the right reasons.'

It was unknown, but a possibility that James Barrett's unit might be sent overseas this fall to fight in the war.

Rick Barrett's father, James Barrett, began a career when he joined the U.S. Navy in 1942 following the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

The eldest Barrett retired as a chief in 1966.

With a strong belief that men should serve their country, the elder James Barrett required all four of his sons to serve in the military at some point.

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