Obituary of Jean Darlene Barrett

Jean Darlene (Helgeland) Barrett, 84, of Cambridge, MN, passed away on Wednesday, May 29, 2019 with family by her bedside.

            Jean was born on February 10, 1935 in Pennington County, MN to Josephine and Leonard Helgeland. After graduating from high school in Thief River Falls, MN, Jean moved to El Paso, TX, to live with her sister, Irene. Having survived three bouts with rheumatic fever, the warmer weather and companionship with family sounded like a good idea. It was there that she met her husband-to-be, James Barrett, who was stationed at the Naval base there. The two would be married on June 6, 1954 in Thief River Falls. After a short stay in Norfolk, VA, where Jim was also stationed, the couple eventually moved to Fargo, ND. Daughter, Laurie Ann, was born July 2, 1955, so Jean took care of Laurie and worked at the First National Bank, helping put Jim through pharmacy school at NDSU. A few years later, when Jim began working at and eventually owning Anderson Drug in Cambridge, Jean stepped in to handle the books as the couple made their permanent home there.

            Jean was an outstanding golfer, as she and Jim became founding lifetime members of the Purple Hawk Country Club. She and Jim were fixtures in the community, as both could be seen hanging on the railing at the back of the store, gathering and conversing with locals. The couple enjoyed annual vacations to Acapulco and Honolulu, particularly after Jim retired in 1998. They also relished visits from Laurie, her husband Tom, and their twin grandchildren, Ashley and Patrick.

            Jean was preceded in death by her husband of 64 years, James W. July 3, 2018; parents Leonard and Josephine of Thief River Falls, MN and sister, Doris Williams of Oregon.

            She is survived by daughter Laurie Barrett Coyne and husband Tom, of Apple Valley, MN; as well as grandchildren, Ashley and Patrick, siblings; Irene (Bob) Wolfe of El Paso, TX; Judy Habedank, Sherry Ingersoll, and Larry Helgeland of Thief River Falls, MN; sisters-in-law Donna Nunn, Connie Barrett and Phyllis (Phillip) Ward.


Memorial service 1 PM Saturday June 1, 2019 at Carlson-Lillemoen Funeral Home 311 S. Ashland St. Cambridge, MN

Friends may gather 1 hour prior to service at the funeral home. Please dress in BRIGHT colors!

Private interment at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery.

Memorials preferred to Cambridge Lutheran Church or Donor’s Choice

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