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James M. Barrett, III
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Birth: 1924, USA
Death: Sep. 22, 2011
Allen County
Indiana, USA

James M. Barrett III, a Fort Wayne attorney who pushed for the preservation of natural lands in the region, has died at the age of 87.

Barrett, a native of the city, died Thursday after a lengthy fight with pancreatic cancer, according to his family.

He served as a director of Fort Wayne National Bank for 32 years and was a partner in the Barrett & McNagny law firm. His practice focused mainly on real estate, medical professional corporations, banking and estate planning.

But for him, his most fulfilling work was with ACRES Land Trust, a non-profit group he helped found in 1960. The group's goal, according to its website, is to protect natural areas in northeast Indiana, southern Michigan and northwest Ohio.

His work with the trust led him to draft the Indiana Nature Preserves law, which was passed in 1967. The law has resulted in the dedication of more than 200 natural areas in the state.

In a brief autobiography, Barrett wrote that he developed an interest in the outdoors as a child growing up in Fort Wayne. "There were undeveloped lots on each side of the house I lived in and neighboring children and I played in them for years," he recalled.

Later in life, he enjoyed backpacking in the West and hiking in the woods near Huntertown, where he lived with his wife, Patricia.

"When he was ill, he could hardly stand not being outside and taking a walk," his wife said in a phone interview.

Born in 1924, Barrett went to South Side High School for 2 1/2 years before his parents sent him to St. George's School in Middletown, R.I. Barrett received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Michigan.

He attended St. George's, a school on the Atlantic Coast, during World War II. Due to fears of a German attack, he and another student were assigned the duty of climbing to the top of a chapel tower at dawn to watch and listen for possible enemy submarines and airplanes.

"We never heard a single one, though submarines may well have prowled our shores without surfacing," he wrote in his autobiography.

Barrett is survived by his wife, three children and four grandchildren.

Arrangements for his memorial service are pending. 
Created by: Steve
Record added: Sep 25, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 77089438
James M. Barrett, III
Added by: Steve
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- Steve
 Added: Sep. 25, 2011

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