Childhood love affair with history, military is fulfilled
During his childhood days growing up in California, Barry Crane always had a love for the military and history.
He would spend his days as a young boy playing “army” with his father’s military attire and feeding his interest in history by reading.
And now, at age 34, Crane has turned both of his passions into a successful career.
Crane lives in Dayton, Ohio, where he is a major in the U.S. Air Force Reserves. He works as a consultant to the U.S. Air Force for the company Bearing Point in Dayton.
A 1990 graduate of California Area High School, he attended California University of Pennsylvania for one year before transferring to The Citadel, a military college in Charleston, S.C. He earned a bachelors degree in history and entered the Air Force, earning the rank of second lieutenant.
After graduating college his first assignment was at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton. While on active duty, he traveled to the Middle East nine times. After the terroristic attacks of Sept. 11, he spent two months in the Middle East, where he worked as a logistics planner at an air operations center. During those two months, he was part of the air war over Afghanistan.
While his tour of duty included tumultuous assignments, he was able to see many parts of the Middle Eastern countries during his visits there.
Crane said he “loved” visiting many areas of the Middle East.
“There are so many areas there that aren’t seen on the news and the people there are just wonderful,” he said. “When you tell them you’re an American, they will talk to you for hours.”
After he left active duty in 2001, he began working as a consultant to the Air Force and received his master’s degree in international affairs from the University of Dayton. He is currently pursuing a second master’s degree in military history.
“It’s my goal to someday teach history on the college level,” he said.
Outside of his professional career, Crane is busy as a devoted dad to his son, Ryan, 4.
A die hard Pittsburgh Steelers fan, he is already instilling in his young son a love for the black and gold. His son already has three Steelers jerseys.
Crane admits living in the heart of Cincinnati Bengals territory isn’t always easy for a Steelers fan, but he wears his black and gold with pride and never backs down from a good debate when it comes to his hometown team.
“The rivalry here against the Steelers is huge,” he said. “I work with two other guys from the Pittsburgh area so we constantly wear our black and gold gear and call them band wagon fans.”
He is also a Pittsburgh Panthers football fan and enjoys taking his son to minor league baseball games. He also enjoys playing indoor and sand volleyball and reading in his spare time.
Crane also loves to travel and has taken his son to the exotic beaches of the Virgin Islands and is planning a trip in February to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
He also travels back to California to visit his parents, George and Mary Lou Crane, his sister Lori Sphar and niece, Ashley Sphar.