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First Name: George

Last Name: Barber

Birthplace: Buckhead, GA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Air Force (1947 - present)

Middle Name: Russell

Date of Birth: 26 August 1914

Date of Death: 17 December 2004

Rank: Colonel

Years Served:
George Russell Barber

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


George Russell Barber
Colonel, U.S. Air Force

George Russell Barber was born on 26 August 1914 in Buckhead, GA.

In World War II he served as one of four chaplains with the Army's 1st Infantry Division at Omaha Beach when Allied forces stormed the shores of Normandy on 6 June 1944. He spent the day ministering to the wounded and dying at Omaha Beach, prepared the dead for burial and helped select the site of the U.S. Cemetery overlooking the beach.

Serving throughout Europe during the war, he ministered during the Battle of the Bulge and the capture of the strategic bridge at Remagen, Germany. He later ministered with the Air Force during the Korean War and served during the Vietnam War at March AFB, CA, and retired as a Colonel in 1969.

In Retirement

After retiring, Barber was a regular at many D-Day Invasion reunions on Omaha Beach in Normandy. He delivered the opening prayer at the dedication ceremony for the National D-Day Museum in New Orleans in June 2000, joining celebrities Tom Hanks, Tom Brokaw, Steven Spielberg and others.

In 2003, he led an interfaith service at dedication ceremonies for the Dole Institute of Politics at Kansas University, in Lawrence, KS. The World War II reunion was hosted by NBC News Anchor Tom Brokaw, included former president Jimmy Carter, and over 25,000 in attendance.

He was the last surviving D-Day Chaplin.

Death and Burial

Colonel George Russell Barber died on 17 December 2004 in Whittier, CA. He is buried at Rose Hills Memorial Park in Whittier, CA.

Honoree ID: 2097   Created by: MHOH




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