Col. John F . “Jack” Barrett, US Air Force, Retired

Col. John F . “Jack” Barrett, US Air Force, Retired (1912-1997)

Col. John F . "Jack" Barrett

WWII recon, patrol and bomber pilot. Named CO of the 152nd Fighter Squadron, RI Air National Guard in 1949. Born in New Hampshire, he moved to RI in 1912 and graduated from St. Andrew’s Technical School in Barrington. After two years in the Merchant Marine, he learned to fly in 1930. A general aviation pilot and flight instructor, he was recruited by RI National Guard as one of first pilots for 126th Observation Squadron, 1939. Commended for saving two crew members after crash landing in Boston Harbor. In WWII, anti-sub patrol pilot; B-17 and B-24 instructor; flight inspector, 15th Air Force, North Africa and Italy. He flew 11 combat bombing missions by war’s end, earning four Air Medals. Promoted to Colonel, 1953; commanded Air National Guard.

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