Dr. Ron Barrett Youth Project

August 17, 1948 – May 31, 2015

Dr. Ron Barrett biography: August 17, 1948 – May 31, 2015

Ronald Keith Barrett, Ph.D. was born in Brooklyn, New York on August 17, 1948, and departed this life on May 31, 2015, at the Providence St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, California. His parents are Cyril and Dorothy Barrett. He grew up and attended elementary and high school in Florence, SC. He graduated from Wilson High School class of 1966. Ronald attended Morgan State University. He graduated in 1970 with honors and received the Bachelor of Science degree. He continued his education and graduate work at the University of Pittsburgh. He received his Masters of Science Degree in 1974 and in 1977, he received his Doctorate Philosophy degree, both in Social Psychology. A student of life, Dr. Barrett received a certificate from Harvard University for special training in higher education administration and a Fellow in Thanatology F.T., a certification from the Association of Death Education and Counseling, Inc.

In 1977, Ronald moved to Los Angeles where he assumed the position of Assistant Professor of Psychology at California State University. In 1978, he join the faculty of Loyola Marymount University as an Associate Professor of Psychology: Dr. Barrett served on the faculty of Loyola Marymount University for 36 years. During his distinguished career at Loyola he achieved tenured in 1983 and the distinction of Professor in 1996. He served as the Interim Chair of the Department of African American Studies and Interim Chair the Department of Psychology. In the fall of 2010, Dr. Barrett was appointed the Chair of the Department of Psychology, a position he held through the spring of 2014. At the time of his death, he remained on the faculty and a Professor of Psychology.

Dr. Ronald Keith Barrett is the first African American to achieve full Professorship at Loyola Marymount and the first African male to serve Chair of the Department of Psychology.

Dr. Barrett’s articles and manuscripts have been published in over 36 publications. He was a sought after keynote speaker, workshop presenter, authority and advisor.

At Loyola Marymount University, he created and taught a course (with an accompanying lab) on the Psychology of Death & Dying among other topics. He is an internationally recognized specialist on the study of cross-cultural differences in death, dying and funeral rites and has published widely on African American funeral practices and multicultural perspectives. He has served as a consultant to groups locally and nationally including the Open Society Institute, Los Angeles and Philadelphia County coroner’s offices. Dr. Barrett is widely known for his expertise on urban youth homicidal violence. He has been a featured national teleconference speaker for the Hospice Foundation of America’s (“Children Mourning, Mourning Children”), the Service Corporation International (“Communities in Crisis: Safeguarding our Kids at School and on the Streets”), and the Hospice Foundation of America’s, (“Living with Grief: Who We Are – How We Grieve”). He was a speaker, social advocate, researcher, and author of numerous scholarly projects on children, youth and death & dying. He had years of “hands on” experience as the founder & project director of a grass-roots urban anti-gang, drug & violence prevention program South Central Los Angeles (The United Methodist Junior Basketball League &

Youth Employment & Development Project). The project received numerous citations and awards. In 1998 he was recognized and honored for this work with a grant from the Kellogg Foundation. He has worked on the treatment end, as well as working in research and design of grief support groups and methodologies in the treatment of traumatic loss in young inner-city children. He was also actively involved in the HIV/AIDS community, as well as widely known nationally for his work and consultations on “Bereavement Burnout Prevention.” His international reputation includes research and teaching in Germany (1995), seminars in Australia (1998), and Ghana (2001). During his sabbatical in 2001 Dr. Barrett begun to study funeralization & aftercare practices among West African Akan in Ghana & Blacks in the Caribbean. He created and taught a seminar on the “Psychology of Men” and regularly conducted workshops on “Men and Grief”. Dr. Barrett is a member of the Association of Death Education & Counseling (ADEC) and was the founder & past chair of the ADEC People of Color Forum and the ADEC Multiculturalism Committee. He served on numerous boards.

After years of research and writing his book is largely finished. The book is entitled, “Soon, Very Soon: Death, Dying & Bereavement in the African American Experience”, copyright 2010. The book will be published posthumously.

Ronald Keith Barrett enjoyed life. He traveled extensively throughout the world. He enjoyed laughter and always had encouraging words for family, friends, and strangers. A Christian, Ron was a member of Wesley United Methodist Church and work with other Methodist churches and houses of worship.

Dr. Ronald Keith Barrett is survived by his brother, Nathaniel Barrett, nephews, Lamont and Lloyd Barrett, nieces, Gabrielle, Falynn, Karis and Aria Barrett, aunts, uncles, cousins, devoted friends, and students. He leaves a legacy in his writings, teachings, deeds, and a legacy of love, faith and belief in God.

The Program itself:

The Dr. Ron Barrett program was done in memory of Dr. Ronald Keith Barrett. His life was the resemblance of how we as Christians are meant to serve the community. We honor his legacy and are continuing his work through the teenagers of South Los Angeles to give back to their community and learn how to better it. As we know, there are many teenagers that are falling into paths that lead often destruction based on the number of drugs, gangs, and violence that is seen in this community. Heritage UMC decrees to help these teenagers be able to find the path to a brighter future that could be achieved. Through hard work and persistence, we have teenagers that have been able to come forward to assist our classes and events that provides to them resources that they may need. We are here to serve the community and through the youth, we can achieve it!

Lead: Darian Ross

As children grow into becoming teenagers and adults, there first footsteps in the real world may be the scariest of all. How these children are taught will come to show who they become. Heritage United Methodist ensures their kid’s program may open the doorways to success. Providing teachings from the bible and resources in the world to pave the path that they have yet not embarked on.

We hope our program may expand to give these children a program where they find friends and reliance that they may not experience in their own homes at times. We know that being in these children’s lives may be the only way we could demonstrate our love towards them, as Jesus Christ showed His love towards us as His children.

There is no mistake as to why we have been placed in a community that yearns for help and guidance. We are here to serve and are more than willing to go the extra mile for these children.



Thursdays: 8AM-9AM


Thursdays 8AM-9AM


Thursdays 10AM-12PM

Served Every Thursday  •  Times of Service: 10AM-12PM  •  ‘Rakestraw’ Location: 5139 S Main St. Los Angeles, CA 90011

Everyone is welcomed, there are NO REQUIREMENTS




Breakfast / Lunch Program

Served Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Cooked slowly allowing the meal to be perfect for serving.

Bowen Location : 3522 Trinity St. Los Angeles, CA 90011
Times of service : 10AM-12PM

No requirements. it’s free food!

For more information: heritageunited112@gmail.com