Frederick Barrett

Obituary of Frederick Taylor Barrett

December 12, 1927-February 20, 2022

Colonel Frederick Taylor Barrett, US Army (Ret.) of Arlington, Virginia died peacefully Sunday, February 20, 2022. He was 94 years old.

Born on Long Island, New York, he joined the Army at the tender age of 17 requiring parental consent.   When his mother refused to sign the age waiver, he convinced his older sister to sign his mother’s name, thereby launching his 33-year Army career.

 He began his Army life in basic training in 1945 as WWII was coming to an end. He then served in both the Korean war and Vietnam war.

In 1946 he was commissioned to the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in the Army Signal Corps.

From 1946-1950 he served in the Army of Occupation, Yokohama/Tokyo Japan where he met Gladys Saleeby. In 1949 Gladys had been working as a missionary for the Episcopal Church in Shanghai, China. She was evacuated to Tokyo, Japan after the Chinese communist takeover. Although they lived two blocks away from each other in Brooklyn, NY, and went to the same high school, they never spoke other than the casual hello. It was a random encounter at an American cafeteria in Tokyo Japan that began their romance and subsequent 70-year marriage.


Career highlights include

1951-1952 he attended the US Army Language School, Monterey, CA for Korean.

1952-1953 he served as the Regimental POW interrogator, 25th infantry division in Korea.

1953-1955 Special agent, 441st CIC Detachment, Japan

1955-1956 Student, US Army Intelligence School, Fort Holabird, MD

1956-1959 Staff Officer, Hq. US CONARC, Fort Monroe, VA

1959-1960 Student, US Army Security Agency School, Fort Devens, MA

1960-1961 S2, US Army Security Agency, Hawaii

1961-1962 US Army Element, Joint Support Group, Seoul, Korea

1962-1966 Counterintelligence Staff Officer, OACSI, DA, Washington, DC

1966-1968 Commander, Collection Detachment, 502d MI Bn., Seoul, Korea

1968-1969 G2, 1st Cavalry Division, Vietnam

1969-1972 Commander, 116th MI Group/Director of Operations, USAFAC, Washington, DC

1972-1973 Student, State Department, Foreign Service Language Institute, for Turkish

1973-1976 US Army Attaché/Defense Attaché, US Embassy, Ankara, Turkey

1976-1979 Commander, US Operational Group, Fort Meade, MD


During his 33-year career in the Army he received numerous medals, decorations, citations, and commendations. Most notable are the Bronze star, World War II Victory Medal, The Legion of Merit, Air Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Korean Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal and many others.  In addition to his military decorations he was fluent in the Korean and Turkish language.

His military career was followed by 12 years as a regional Security Manager for Mobil Oil.

His work at Mobil included time living in London where he traveled extensively to oversee security for Mobil Oil in Africa, Turkey, and the North Sea.

He and Gladys returned to the States where they lived in Dallas, TX for 6 years. When Mobil Oil moved their headquarters to Fairfax, VA they returned to their Arlington home until he retired from Mobil.

Post retirement Fred always had a desire for service. At the end of the Balkan Wars, he volunteered as an international election observer for several of the newly formed countries once part of the Republic of Yugoslavia.

His other volunteer services included work at the National Archives, Arlington County election poll volunteer, and Assistant Treasurer for St. Mary’s Episcopal Church.

He remained active for many years and played tennis into his 80’s.


In between deployments, career obligations, and raising a family he pursued his college education. He received his BA in Political Science from the George Washington University (1964), and his MSc. in Business Administration from the George Washington University (1972).


Although the Army was his life, he was most proud of his immediate family. He and Gladys had four children that they raised on various Army posts, and overseas assignments throughout his career.


He is survived by his wife Gladys Saleeby Barrett, his children Alice, (Brendan), Kathryn, (Craig), Gale, Fred, (Denise), five grandchildren, two great grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews.


A funeral service will be held Saturday February 26, 11 AM, at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church,

 2609 N. Glebe Rd., Arlington, VA 22207.

A service with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery will be held at a future date.

In Lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Fisher House Foundation and the Army Emergency Relief.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Frederick Barrett, please visit Tribute Store

Funeral Service

11:00 am
Saturday, February 26, 2022
St. Mary's Episcopal Church
2609 N. Glebe Road
Arlington, Virginia, United States
Share Your Memory of