Babbitt was on July 26, 1862, in New York City to Lawrence, a U.S. Army Colonel, and Fannie Babbitt. He was the son-in-law of Charles McDougall and brother-in-law of Thomas Mower McDougall. Babbitt died on December 9, 1939, in Santa Barbara, California. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
Babbitt graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1884 and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant. He served as a brigade commander during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive and the Battle of Saint-Mihiel during World War I. Awards he received include the Army Distinguished Service Medal for "exceptionally meritorious and conspicuous services" in World War I; Officer, Legion d'Honour (France); Comendator, Order of El Sol del Peru (Peru) and Abdon Calderon, First Class (Ecuador). He retired in 1924.
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