When a new submission is made, that candidate will remain on the candidate list for up to three years, if not selected to be inducted. Upon three years of review without being inducted, the name will be removed from the candidate list. New candidates will be posted on this page as they are submitted and received by the Hall of Honor commitee. You may also submit additional information for current candidates listed here by using the nomination submission form. Each year, the candidates list will be narrowed down to a select number of nominees for voting.
View the current candidates by scrolling through the slides below.
Captain John McCaull, USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: CAPT Richard Heimerle, USN (Ret.)
The following is from an article by David Axelson published in the Coronado Eagle & Journal.
Though now considered an archaic English idiom, the phrase ‘Hail fellow, well met’ applies perfectly to 82-year-old Coronado resident John McCaull. If we both had more time after our interview concluded, one or several beers might have been consumed as we continued our conversation. While I was listening to McCaull’s presentation regarding his professional career during a recent meeting of the Military Officer Association of America, Silver Strand Branch, I knew a John McCaull feature was imminent.
McCaull is a native of Van Nuys, graduated from Redondo Union High School and matriculated to Occidental College, where he majored in physical education. As importantly he met a cheerleader named Laurie and the couple will celebrate their 59th wedding anniversary in December. The couple has three children John Jr., Kristy and Jeff, plus they also have five grandsons, who John affectionately describes as, “My own basketball team.” As McCaull said, “It really annoys our children that we’re such a cliché. I played forward on the basketball at Occidental. ” Later McCaull added that he was an All-American Volleyball player.
McCaull served as a Los Angeles County lifeguard for five years in Hermosa Beach before he was drafted. When asked how his Navy career started, McCaull recounted, “I used to sit and watch planes taking off from LAX and wondered where they were going. I was sitting in a bar one night with a friend who was going through flight training. He said, ‘Go down to Los Alamitos and they will fix you up.’ I didn’t intend to stay in the Navy; I wanted to be an airline pilot. They offered me a regular commission and I was in the Navy for 31 years.”
McCaull continued, “My career was bumping along in 1963 as a lieutenant based at North Island, with three kids. I got a set of orders one day and I thought, ‘what the heck is this?’ I went off to Washington and truly the guy said, ‘Stand on the southeast corner of this specific intersection and a black car will pull up and you get in,’ that’s how it all started. My commanding officer recommended me as a flight instructor. They wanted a recommendation on somebody who would do well overseas and knew the P2V7 airplane.”
‘They’ as it turned out was the Central Intelligence Agency, and the job entailed relocating to Taipei, Taiwan with his entire family, to train Chinese pilots to fly over Mainland China. McCaull provided the geopolitical overview of Asia at the time he arrived. “Mao Tse-tung had taken over China and two million Chinese with an allegiance to Chiang Kai-Shek joined 10-12 million Taiwanese on their home island. Basically I was helping the Chinese Resistance to fly reconnaissance and intelligence missions over China. Some of the pilots were very good and the top guys were pretty darn good. They got extra pay for being in the 34th Squadron. They had to apply to be in the squadron and then I would teach them to fly the P2V7. I washed two guys out because they couldn’t hack it.”
The Company’s Skunkworks operation based in Burbank provided state of the art electronics for the planes that flew over China, the same location that developed the U2 and SR-71 ‘Blackbird’ spy planes. The electronics in the planes flown by the Black Bats, as the 34th Squadron was informally known, were capable of jamming virtually all defense equipment on the ground. Despite that fact the casualties in the unit were high. Over an eight-year span, the Black Bats flew 850 missions and lost 150 men. In total the intelligence gathering mission ran from 1955-1967.
McCaull elaborated on the dangerous conditions facing the Black Bats, which originated in Hsinchu, Taiwan, which at the time was a small fishing village. “As long as nobody could see us, we were okay. That means the only thing that could hurt us was the eyeball. We couldn’t jam the adversaries’ eyes. If they could see us, our chance of survival was slim. We cruised along at 190 knots. They would send up a MIG and vector another plane behind to drop flares so they could see the P2V7. Those two together were a formidable enemy to deal with. The program was shut down because the Chinese Communists got too good. The risk was no longer worth the intelligence they got out of it. Then they started using satellites and other stuff. We kept prodding them and they got better and better at finding us.”
In fact the Chinese Communists were so good, they had a spy embedded somewhere in the system who could identify the Chinese pilots and later on McCaull, by name, while they were in the air. At one point the Chinese Communists offered a $50,000 reward for the reconnaissance plane and McCaull. After serving in the Black Bat training position from March 1964 to October 1966, McCaull returned to active duty in the Navy. Unfortunately he had a two and one-half year gap in his career resume that he couldn’t and wouldn’t explain.
When he rejoined the Navy, McCaull had logged more than 5,000 flying hours in the P2V7 aircraft, the most of anybody in the service. McCaull laughed and said, “Since nobody knew where I had been, I had to go through six months of P2V7 training, conducted by the guys I had checked out before I left.” He was later assigned to fly out of the Philippines and Viet Nam.
His other tours of duty included being flag secretary for the Commander Naval Air Forces Pacific. “That was a very good job,” recounted McCaull. “We went to Hawaii for four years and I made Captain while we were there. Then we went to Bangkok for two years where I was chief of the Navy Military Advisory Group. I retired as chief of staff for the commander of Patrol Wing Pacific. All of the patrol aircraft were under one admiral at Moffett Field.”
In 1987, John and Laurie McCaull were visiting Canton, China via Hong Kong, which led to a harrowing experience. “I was still on active duty and we took a couple of weeks off. We were standing in a line in Canton to get on a train, Laurie, me and another couple, when two armed guys grabbed me. They took me into a little room and there was a guy who spoke very good English. He said they had to hold me for a minute because I was holding some oranges. I was a little concerned.”
While he was still in the Navy, McCaull earned a BS degree in psychology, physical education and military science from San Diego State University.
Interestingly, it wasn’t until we reached question No. 39 in the interview, about his post-Navy activities, that McCaull revealed that he is one of the best senior over 80 tennis players in the country. He is currently ranked No. 1 in San Diego; No. 2 in the state of California; and No. 9 nationally, in the U.S. Tennis Association’s Seniors Division. McCaull plans to compete in the North-South Senior Challenge in Fresno next month and he estimates that he plays tennis four days each week. His regular opponents include Jim Perley, David Wilson, George (Jeep) Rice and Phil Hunsaker.
“I grew up on the beach being a surf bum,” McCaull said of his younger days. “The Navy stopped that, thank heavens. I got married and joined the Navy. And they gave me time to go to the beach, which was wonderful.”
ADCS Gilbert Wood (Woody), USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: Roger Creamer
ADCS Gilbert Eugene Wood (Woody), USN (Ret.) started flying P-3’s in 1980, and was assigned to VP-48, VP-16, VP-30 and retired after 26 years from NADEP as the Senior Flight Engineer and Assistant P-3 Program Officer.
While in VP-48 Woody flew five flights with Jay Beasley (Lockheed P-3 Test Pilot) and had a dozen simulator periods with him as well.
Woody was the VP-30 Administrative Support Aircraft (ASA) Flag Crew Chief for Admiral Kelso CNO, Admiral Boorda CNO and Admiral Flanagen (CINCLANTFLT). While in the detachment He had the opportunity to fly Ex-President George H.W. Bush, his wife and three Secret Service agents in one of the VIP P-3’s from Kennebunkport, Main to Norfolk, Virginia and back on the 50th anniversary of Bush’s Naval Career. He left the detachment in 1997.
ADCS Wood was a P-3 Instructor Flight Engineer continually from his time in VP-48 until retirement on May 29th 1999. Woody then began his current job as the Site Manager for the civilian P-3 simulator instructors. During his tenure as the site manager, his oversight expanded from eight F/E Instructors teaching 56 hours per day, to a high of 54 Instructors teaching all positions in the P-3 except IFT totaling 345 hours per day. Woody continues as the site manager and has begun expanding into the P-8 simulator instruction field. Woody will continue as site manager until the P-3 sundown is complete.
Woody has over 11,000 hours in the P-3 and an estimated 20,000 hours of flight simulator training hours, and over 37 years of teaching Pilots and Flight Engineers how to operate the P-3. He was the Subject Matter Expert for the Level “D” equivalent upgrade to the flight simulators in Hawaii, Brunswick and Jacksonville.
Prior to 100th anniversary of U.S. Naval Aviation, Woody began a two year restoration project on the NAS Jacksonville static displayed PBY-5A Catalina. He worked on the project for a year by himself using his own time, talent and funds. Others began coming out to help during the second year and VP-5 bought the paint to complete the job. Woody used over 2500 sheets of sandpaper, 11 sanders and one compressor. Woody repaired the broken aileron, damaged by a recent storm, at his home and realized when it was over 30\' long it looked rather odd when he came back through the main gate with it in his pickup truck. During the re-dedication ceremony of the finished PBY, the side number was changed to replicate a PBY that was shot down and lost in the Bering Sea during WWII, dedicating the exhibit to those who lost their lives while flying in this legendary aircraft.
ADCS Wood’s achievements, qualifications and education include:
Navy Commendation, Three Navy Achievement Medals, and Meritorious Service Medal
8251 Flight Engineer
FAA A&P Mechanic with Inspectors Authorization
B.S. in Aviation Management, Southern Illinois University
Master’s in Aeronautical Sciences, Embry-Riddle University.
Plank owner in MPA.
Married 32 years to Jan Wood, two children, son Kenny with wife Amanda and granddaughter Kimber, and daughter Stephanie. Woody and Jan make their home in Middleburg, Florida.
ADCS Wood, USN (ret.) spent his entire military and civilian life, thus far, doing a job to insure others are trained, qualified and in some cases certified, making their voyage in the maritime community a successful meaningful event in their own lives. His tireless character and patriotic bearing doesn’t hide his servant’s heart whether in uniform or out. Woody has had your six for almost 40 years. He deserves the consideration for a place in our Hall of Honor.
Commander Delbert A Olson, USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: William Klett
Olson, Delbert Austin
Date of loss: 11 January 1968
Remains identified 20 December 2002
Unit: Observation Squadron 67 (VO-67)
DOB: 4 January 1926
Home City of Record: Casselton, ND
Joined Navy: 18 April 1947
Married: 30 April 1958 to Patricia Harris
Daughter: Dana (Olson) Snyder
Son: David Olson
CDR Delbert A. Olson was killed in action on 11 January 1968. He was XO of VO-67 and was on a classified mission in Vietnam when he descended through the clouds and was never seen again. VO-67 was a vital part of project Muscle Shoals. The mission of the project was to detect, classify, hinder and penalize the North Vietnamese Army infiltration into the South. Estimates of 75% loss of VO-67 Aircraft and combat crews by planners fortunately did not occur. Thanks to the Air Force FAC Pilots training and intelligence reports only 3 aircraft and 20 crewmembers were lost. The FAC Pilots taught the VO-67 pilots how to survive the heavily defended air space over the trail. The men of VO-67 were dedicated to the mission they were assigned. After each aircraft shot down with the loss of their close friends and fellow airmen, their resolve became more determined to stop the flow of war supplies down the Ho Chi Minh trail.
Note: As a fresh Ensign I was in VP-2 with CDR (then LCDR) Olson in the early 60\'s.
Commander Rick Payne, USN
Person Nominating: John Thiele
In 2001, LTJG Richard Payne sat in the tube of an EP-3E as its Tactical Evaluator when a
Chinese J-8 Finback moved too close to the mission aircraft in an unsafe intercept. Shearing
the top of the jet in a fatal collision, the EP-3 now known as 511 had a terribly damaged wing
and was forced to consider maneuverability options. LT Shane Osborne made the decision
based on a lack of controllability to force land the plane at an airfield in Hainon Island rather
than risk the crew in an attempted ditch. The nation held its breath as the crew was held for
ten days before being released by the Chinese government after negotiations.
Undaunted, Rick Payne continued his Naval aviation career, serving as a NATOPS instructor
at VP-30 and pursuing a successful series of tours. In 2014 he returned a third time to VQ-1
and in May of 2015 he assumed Command of the squadron. Facing down the legacy of his
history with the EP-3 and a career or exemplary service, Skipper Payne skillfully led the
squadron to a year of over 8,600 mishap free flight hours, while continuously forward
deployed around the world with 4 Combat Reconnainssance Crews at 3 separate detachment sites for all 365 days of the year. Commander Payne\'s was regularly seen visiting the squadron spaces each day and making time to encourage his sailors, and his vision and
dedication to excellence provided a spectacular career of high morale, administrative
excellence, and a 98% mission completion rate.
For these reasons and many more that those
who know the man would agree would not be given proper service with simple words,
Commander Rick Payne is my nomination for the 2017 MPA Hall of Honor.
Captain Joseph Kelly, USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: Mark Wood
Capt Joseph P. Kelly, although unknown to virtually every Patrol
Squadron Aircrew should share in a large percentage of their success in locating, localizing and tracking Soviet Submarines during the Cold
War. He is known as \"The Father of Sosus\" and served as the manager of Project Jezebel and Project Caeser (The SOSUS Development Project) from 1951-1973 rising from the Rank of Lieutenant to the Rank of Captain in the same billet. In recognition of Captain Kelly’s unparalleled dedication and contributions to undersea surveillance, the Captain Joseph P. Kelly Award was established in 1992 to recognize those officers, enlisted and civilian personnel who have likewise made great contributions to the “System” during their tenure in the Integrated Undersea Surveillance System (IUSS).
Joseph P. Kelly received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical
Engineering from Catholic University in 1937. After graduation, he
worked at the Westinghouse Corporation in East Pittsburgh on large
turbine generators and cable transmission systems. He was commissioned 22 October 1943 as an Ensign in the United States Navy and served in the Engineering Volunteer Service. He was indoctrinated in Arizona and trained in the Underwater Harbor Defense School in San Pedro, California.
Lieutenant Junior Grade Kelly was then sent to Panama as Maintenance Officer for magnetic loops and harbor defense mine fields. His work involved cable maintenance and repair and marked his first, but by no means last, encounter with cable ships. He was later sent to Clearfield, Utah, as the officer responsible for making weapons and equipment impervious to tropical climate conditions. As World War II came to a close, he was released from the Navy and returned to Westinghouse , where he worked from 1945-1951.
With the advent of the Korean War, he was called back to active duty as a Lieutenant, assigned to Advanced Space Functional Components. In December 1951, he was interviewed by Admiral Wallen, Chief of the Bureau of Ships. He asked him, “What do you know about Project
Jezebel?” His response was “What’s that?” The Admiral replied, “Welcome Aboard: you’re the new Project Officer.” That was the beginning of Joseph Kelly’s twenty-one year association with Oceanographic Surveillance.
During that period, he rose to the rank of Captain. His outstanding
performance as manager of Projects Jezebel and Caesar and the entire
Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) program was widely recognized both by the Navy and by industry. He received two Navy Commendation Medals, and was three times awarded the Legion of Merit. An award from the Maritime Technology Society for Ocean Science and Technology cited Captain Kelly’s “superb management” of the SOSUS program. Captain Kelly was also a recipient, along with Charles F. Wiebusch of Bell Laboratories, of the first Admiral Charles B. Martell Award, given by the National Security Industrial Association. The citation reads: “For their creative and dedicated leadership of the Project Caesar Navy/Industry Team, the work of which led to the implementation of an undersea surveillance system that has effectively and immeasurably increased the worldwide efficiency of the anti-submarine warfare effort of the United States Navy.”
Following his retirement from the Navy in 1973, Captain Kelly served as Staff Advisor of the Oceanic Division of Westinghouse. He died at
Bethesda Naval Hospital on 6 November 1988.
Rear Admiral James P. Schear, USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: CAPT Tom Spink, USN (RET.)
I would like to nominate Rear Admiral James P. Schear, USN (Ret). The Admiral's leadership positions and accomplishments, both before and after he left the Reserve MPA community, are exemplary. I would like to provide some specific examples of his leadership abilities.
I was CDR Schear's XO in VP-91 in the mid-80s. These were exciting times in the VP community and especially at NAS Moffett Field. The 13 Reserve Force P-3 squadrons stood up in 1970 and were spread throughout CONUS. But it was difficult for them to accomplish meaningful results flying outdated aircraft (P-3As from the active duty), even with experienced crews. The introduction of the P-3B TACNAV MOD aircraft provided a capability that allowed these experienced crews to match their active duty counterparts in on-station performance. This was especially challenging for VP-91 because they were based at NAS Moffett Field with seven active duty squadrons, all flying P-3Cs. Instead of being satisfied as the top Reserve VP squadron (“Battle E” in ’84 & ‘86), CDR Schear set the squadron's goals higher. He wanted the squadron to be a full partner in all operations. He proposed and was granted permission for VP-91 to take over operational missions on a couple of drill weekends per month. This included missions against the Russian missile boat roaming 1,000 miles off the California coast. He was instrumental in turning the Reserve VP squadrons from the active duty perception of a “flying club” into a highly effective ASW force, capable of augmenting their active duty brethren in all mission areas. In another bold move, he helped convince the Naval Air Reserve Headquarters in New Orleans to allow the Reserve VP squadrons to go west of Hawaii, where they had always sent crews for training. With opportunities for on-top successes against Russian submarines, the Reserve squadrons returned from their annual active duty for training periods with the highest readiness figures ever. This full partnership led to the Reserve VP squadrons being assigned to some of the deployment sites for a six-month period and thereby giving the active duty squadrons a break in their Op-Tempo.
I have spoken with many former enlisted and every one of them remembers then CDR Schear as a C.O. who pushed them to reach their full potential. And every one of them attributes their level of success after VP-91 to Admiral Schear.
After VP-91, then Commander Schear stood up the Master Augment Unit (MAU) at Moffett. But it was only through his force of will to create a true force multiplier in a way previously unknown to both the active and Reserve leadership. Every hurdle was cleared and Reserve personnel flew active duty aircraft and vice versa. An effective use of assets simply not heard of prior to his effort. A Memorandum of Agreement had to be signed and more importantly trust had to be earned. And all his efforts were highly successful, including the deployment of a MAU crew to Desert Storm. His vision has always been focused on success through hard work and training.
Above all else, Admiral Schear has the most integrity of any man I have ever known. He will not bend to pressure if it involves compromising ethics or honor. I remember when he was Chairman of the Editorial Board for Proceedings magazine, he often had to stand up to officers who demanded immunity from editing or opposing opinions. Admiral Schear never wavered and made all submit their articles according to the established rules of the Independent Sea Services Forum.
Admiral Schear has always been a strong advocate for the VP community as a whole. He is a member of the Advisory Board for the Moffett Field Historical Society and Museum. He visits the museum often and has provided numerous significant ideas on improvements and initiatives to bring the message of Moffett’s legacy to a greater public awareness.
Now as the senior security consultant for Google, he is carefully watching over the legacy of Moffett Field and especially the MPA history and aircraft there. And believe me, there are bureaucrats who have tried and will continue to try to destroy artifacts without consideration of their intrinsic value to future generations.
You will find no better representative of the Reserve component than Admiral Jim “Poopie” Schear. Please review carefully his body of work and I believe you will find him worthy of your vote into the MPRF Hall of Honor.
Person Nominating: CAPT Chris Cluster, USNR (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James P. Schear, USN (Ret.)
An accomplished pilot with multiple in-country tours in SE Asia, instructor pilot in VP-50 and VP- 31, NATOPS evaluator and squadron Commanding Officer in his own right, it was Rear Admiral Schear's vision that was the blueprint for integration and cooperation within our active/reserve MPA community. Following an award winning CO tour at VP-91, hallmarked by his insistence that every reservist maintain a qualification, attitude and bearing befitting the active force, he was personally selected by COMPATWINGSPAC to stand up the VP-Master Augment Unit at Moffett Field. During his tenure, he brought his vision to life with a unit that flew fleet-compatible aircraft, the P-3C, UD- I, and UD- III as opposed to the reserve squadrons flying non- compatible aircraft, the P-3B and B-Mods. He developed a unit of professionals that could augment the active force with full or partial crews, or with individuals filling active squadron needs such as maintainers or other support personnel.
Wing 10, VP-31 and the MAU had full interchange of aircraft and people. When a mission or training aircraft lifted off Moffett, it could be an active aircraft with reserve crewmembers onboard or a reserve aircraft with active duty crewmembers onboard, or any combination of people and equipment. In fact, one of the MAU crews was the only reserve P-3 asset deployed forward during Desert Storm, being cited for action in the Gulf resulting in the sinking of Iraqi ships. They were also the only reserve crew qualified to fly Harpoon missions. Seems natural now, but no one had done it before that time, and most doubted that it was possible.
Following his selection to flag rank, CPWP personally intervened in the detailing process to have him assigned as Deputy. He was there through the WINGSPAC move to Barber's Point. Later in his flag career, he was Deputy Commander - Second Fleet, Vice Commander in Chief - Atlantic Fleet and qualified as an Airborne Emergency Action Officer on Looking Glass at STRATCOM. Few officers and still fewer reserve officers can claim this level of accomplishment.
During his era, there were 28 active and 14 reserve squadrons and Admiral Schear's units were the only reserve elements to be fully compatible and interchangeable with the active force. I had the pleasure of serving as XO/CO of reserve squadron VP-93 in the 1993/94 timeframe. When we arrived in Sigonella, Sicily, to begin flying armed patrol missions in the Adriatic during the Bosnian conflict, I knew we had arrived there on a pathway created by RADM Schear. RADM Schear is worthy of consideration based on his operational record, but his vision and demonstration of active and reserve integration is remarkable and worthy of being honored by his enshrinement.
Reserve components are a full partner in MPRF operations and enshrining Admiral Schear would be a full recognition of this partnership.
Rear Admiral James P. Schear is an Ohio native and a graduate of the United States Naval Academy. He completed flight training immediately following graduation and was designated a Naval Aviator.
Following Maritime Patrol pipeline training, he was assigned to Patrol Squadron 50 at NAS Moffett Field, Ca. He participated in three Western Pacific deployments during this tour, flying numerous missions while operating in Southeast Asia. He was designated Patrol Plane Commander, navigation and pilots NATOPS instructor and Mission Commander in the P-3A and P-3C aircraft. Following that fleet tour of duty, Rear Admiral Schear reported to Patrol Squadron 31 as a P-3 pilot and tactical training instructor. Upon his release from active duty, he affiliated with Patrol Squadron 91 at Moffett Field. During his 13 year tenure in the squadron, Rear Admiral Schear held numerous billets culminating in his assignment as Commanding Officer.
Following that tour, he commanded the Patrol Squadron Master Augment Unit, regaining his Patrol Plane Commander designation in the P-3A and P-3C aircraft, while achieving qualification in the P-3C Update III. Follow-on commands were U.S. Pacific Fleet detachment 320 where he qualified as a Battle Watch Captain in the Fleet Command Center at Pearl Harbor and Reserve Patrol Wing augment unit 0180.
As a Flag Officer, Admiral Schear was assigned as Vice Commander, Patrol Wings U.S. Pacific Fleet; Deputy Commander, Maritime Defense Zone, Atlantic; Deputy Commander, U.S. Second Fleet and Vice Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet prior to his final Assignment as Mobilization Assistant to the Commander in Chief, U.S. Strategic Command, flying the nation's strategic nuclear mission as an Airborne Emergency Action Officer. He is a past Commander of Naval Reserve Readiness Command Region Four and a former Chairman of the Naval Reserve Policy Board. He represented the Navy for five years as a member of the Department of Defense Reserve Forces Policy Board, and was Deputy Chairman of the Board for the US Naval Institute. He also served as Chairman of the Editorial Board for Proceedings magazine.
Rear Admiral Schear has been awarded the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit (3), Meritorious Service Medal (4), Air Medal, Navy Commendation Medal (2), and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry, as well as numerous other campaign and service medals.
Following a long operational and flight operations management career with USAirways that included qualification on 10 aircraft types, Rear Admiral Schear answered a call to public service as a Senior Executive with the Transportation Security Agency, serving in numerous top level positions within that agency including Deputy for Operations. In 2004 he returned to USAirways as the Vice President of Restructuring during a difficult bankruptcy proceeding. The effort was successful and upon the company's emergence from bankruptcy, Admiral Schear returned to TSA as Federal Security Director at Baltimore Washington Marshall Airport and then Federal Security Director for Colorado.
Since retiring from government service he has returned to his Moffett roots, serving as senior consultant for rebuilding Moffett through Google's long-term lease of the airfield. He provides the crucial insight that will secure the future of the Moffett Field Historical Society - including their P-2 and P-3 displays, Hangar One itself, and extensive historical records of Maritime Patrol in the Pacific.
He lives in Arizona with his wife of 38 years, Sharon and is the proud father of four grown children: Ryan, Matt, Adam and Caroline.
It is time to recognize the reserve contribution to the history of Maritime Patrol and you will find no finer representative of all that the component has become.
Admiral Harry Harris, USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: CAPT Richard Heimerle, USN (Ret)
Admiral Harry Harris was born in Japan and reared in Tennessee and Florida. He graduated from the Naval Academy in 1978. Graduate education included Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, Oxford, and MIT's Seminar 21 fellowship.
Designated as a naval flight officer (NFO) in 1979, he was first assigned to Patrol Squadron (VP) 44. Subsequent operational tours included tactical action officer aboard USS Saratoga, operations officer in VP-4, three tours with Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing One, director of operations for U.S. 5th Fleet, and director of operations for U.S. Southern Command.
Harris commanded VP-46, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing One, Joint Task Force-Guantanamo, U.S. 6th Fleet, and Striking and Support Forces NATO. In 2013, he was promoted to admiral and assumed command of the U.S. Pacific Fleet. He took command of U.S. Pacific Command (USPACOM) May 27, 2015, the 24th commander since USPACOM was established in 1947.
Harris served in every geographic combatant command region and participated in the following major operations; S.S. Achille Lauro terrorist hijacking response, Attain Document III, Earnest Will, Desert Shield/Desert Storm, Southern Watch, Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, Willing Spirit, and Odyssey Dawn.
Harris’ staff assignments included aide to Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Japan, speechwriter for the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), three tours on the Navy staff; including Deputy CNO for Communication Networks (OPNAV N6), assistant to the CJCS where he was the chairman’s direct representative to the secretary of state with additional duties as the U.S. roadmap monitor for the Mid-East Peace Process.
He is currently serving as the US Ambassador to the Republic of South Korea.
Harris logged 4,400 flight hours, including over 400 combat hours, in maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft . He is the first Navy flyer from this community to achieve four-star rank. His personal decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, (two awards), Navy Distinguished Service Medal (three awards), Defense Superior Service Medal (three awards), Legions of Merit, Bronze Star (two awards), Air Medal (one strike/flight), and the State Department’s Distinguished Honor Award. He has been decorated by the governments of France, Korea, Japan, Mongolia, Philippines, and Singapore.
Harris received the CIA’s Agency Seal Medal, Navy League’s Stephen Decatur Award, Ellis Island Medal of Honor, Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies Lifetime Achievement Award, Who's Who in Asian American Communities Alliance Foundation Community Spirit Award, and the Asian American Government Executives Network Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award. He is the Navy’s “Gray Owl,” the NFO who has held this designation for the longest period, and the “Old Goat,” the longest-serving Naval Academy graduate still on active duty.
CAPT Jack Punches, USN
Person Nominating: Larry Berberich
Jack Punches was a retired naval officer who flew in P-3s and was serving as a contractor in the Pentagon on 9/11/2001. He was killed during the attack on the building. I did not know Jack personally, but knew of him. Everyone who ever mentioned his name to me spoke highly of his professionalism.
Captain Punches was a native of Tower Hill, Illinois and held a B.S. from Missouri University in Civil Engineering, an M.S. in Strategic Studies from the Naval War College, and an M.S. from Salve Regina in International Relations.
Designated a Naval Aviator in 1975, Captain Punches received orders to Patrol Squadron Sixteen (VP-16) at NAS Jacksonville flying the P-3C. He completed three deployments before reporting as an instructor pilot to the FRS (VP-30) in Jacksonville, Florida.
In July 1982, Captain Punches returned to sea duty when he reported to VPU-1 (Special Projects) in Brunswick, Maine. After two years of intelligence collection duties, he reported to the Navy War College in November 1984.
Upon graduation from Naval War College in November 1985, he returned to Jacksonville, Florida to Patrol Squadron 49 (VP-49) as the Maintenance Officer. After one operational deployment and a Unitas deployment, he received orders as the OIC NAMTRAGRUDET JAX in July 1988.
After an abbreviated tour, Captain Punches joined the Lifting Eagles of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VR-24) in Sigonella, Sicily as the Executive Officer in October 1989. He assumed command of VR-24 in January 1991 and deployed to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia in support of Operations Desert Storm/ Desert Shield.
In June 1992, he reported to the new United Command USSTRATCOM as Chief, Airborne Operations in Omaha, Nebraska. In August 1995, he proceeded to the Office of Chief of Naval Operations as the Head of Navy Counterdrug and Special Assistant to the Under Secretary of the Navy for Counterdrug Matters at the Pentagon in Washington, DC. In June 1996, he assumed duties of Deputy Director, Operations and Interagency Support Division, under the newly assigned Coast Guard flag officer. CAPT Punches retired from the Navy in July 2000. From July until November 2000, Jack Punches served as Senior Consultant with Blue Stone Consulting of Alexandria, Virginia with principal duties assigned as senior advisor for Commander, Naval Forces, Southern Command in Puerto Rico. In December 2000, Jack Punches returned to the Navy as a senior civilian employee when he was appointed as Deputy Head, Navy Interagency Support Branch in the Pentagon.
Captain Punches is survived by the former Janice Myers of Clifton, Virginia, and their two children, Jennifer and Jeremy; his mother, Mrs. Ruth Godwin of Ramsey, Illinois; and sisters Shirley, Janet, Ilena and Debbie. Also, he is survived by his grandfather, Mr. Floyd Punches and his father, Jack Punches, all of Sullivan, Illinois; and Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Myers of Shelbyville, Illinois. He was preceded in death by his stepfather, Leon Godwin, in March 2001.
His favorite pastime since his retirement was golfing with his son, Jeremy, and helping his daughter, Jennifer, set up her very first apartment. In the Navy, Captain Punches accumulated more than 7,000 flight hours and 50 carrier landings. His personal awards include Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, two Meritorious Service Medals, Navy Achievement, Meritorious Unit Commendation, Navy Unit Commendation and various other service/ campaign medals.
CAPT Chalker W. Brown, USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: CDR Sean R. Liedman, USN (Ret.)
It is my pleasure to nominate Captain Chalker W. Brown, U.S. Navy (Ret.) for induction into the Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Hall of Honor in recognition of his significant contributions in shaping the heritage of the Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance (MPR) community.
After building a remarkable reputation as an operational Anti-Submarine Warfare expert during the Cold War, Captain Brown played a pivotal role in the strategic transformation of the MPR community after the collapse of the Soviet Union and end of the Cold War in the early 1990’s. The subsequent quantitative reduction in the Soviet submarine threat, coupled with the maritime surveillance and targeting capability gaps identified during P-3C operations in the Persian Gulf War in 1991 presented a strategic “transform or die” inflection point for the MPR community. In the face of diminishing “Peace Dividend” defense budgets and a rapid reduction in MPR force structure from 24 active and 14 reserve VP squadrons to a force approximately half that size, MPR leadership settled on a vision built around the capabilities of the Anti-Surface Warfare Improvement Program ("AIP" - later re-designated the Aircraft Improvement Program to reflect its multi-mission capabilities). Captain Brown was THE DRIVING FORCE in actualizing the vision of AIP into the reality of transformational capability on-station; he is often referred to as "the Father of AIP". Upon relinquishing command of Patrol Squadron FORTY-EIGHT (VP-48) in May 1991, Captain Brown served as the Deputy Program Manager in the Maritime Surveillance Program Office (PMA-290) on the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) staff and subsequently as the P-3 Requirements Officer in the Air Warfare Division (OP-05 – later N88) on the Chief of Naval Operations' (OPNAV) staff. During this period, he played a key role in cementing the requirements and contractual arrangements for AIP, along with securing the requisite funding in the challenging fiscal environment of the Post-Cold War. Captain Brown went on to serve as the Commanding Officer of VP-30 and led MPR through the AIP Fleet Introduction process beginning in 1998. The success of his Fleet Introduction program was reflected in the immediate operational successes of AIP during combat operations in Kosovo, Afghanistan, and Iraq. It is difficult to overstate the impact of Captain Brown's leadership in transforming MPR in the Post-Cold War era and saving the community from sundown due to strategic irrelevance. The core of his strategic vision later became the requirements foundation for the P-8A "Poseidon" Multi-mission Maritime Aircraft and MQ-4C “Triton” Unmanned Aerial System programs.
In addition to his contributions in transforming the MPR Fleet for the Post-Cold War era, Captain Brown also spearheaded an effort to inculcate MPR's rich heritage into the newest generations of MPR warriors as they entered the Fleet through the doors of VP-30. While serving as the CO of VP-30 from 1997-1999, he personally invested himself in acquiring an extensive collection of historical MPR photographs and memorabilia to adorn the passageways of Hangar 30 at NAS Jacksonville and daily remind our MPR students of the tremendous heroism and courage of those who have gone before them. As a testament to his enduring legacy, Captain Brown's heritage preservation efforts are still posted in the passageways of Hangar 30 twenty years later and continue to inspire MPR warriors.
Captain Brown's strategic leadership and personal commitment to honor the heritage of the MPR community warrant induction into the MPR Hall of Honor; doing so would inspire others to further honor the heritage of the MPR community.
Rear Admiral Wycliffe David "Wyc" Toole, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Person Nominating: CAPT Richard Heimerle, USN (Ret)
It is with deep regret I inform you of the passing of Rear Admiral Wycliffe David "Wyc" Toole, Jr., U.S. Navy (Retired) on 24 November 2018 at age 91. He enlisted in the U.S. Naval Reserve on 21 April 1944 and served as a Naval Aviator until his retirement in 1977, holding three commands simultaneously; Naval Districts Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. His early career
included sensitive intelligence collection operations, Hurricane Hunter flights, and he was later awarded a Bronze Star medal while in command of USS IWO JIMA (LPH-2) during combat support operations off Vietnam in early 1971.
After attending Howard College in Birmingham, Alabama and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Wyc was commissioned an ensign in the U.S. Naval Reserve on 5 June 1946 and augmented to active duty on 23 May 1947. His first assignment was aboard the destroyer-escort USS PAUL G. BAKER (DE-642) operating in the Far East, before transferring in February 1947 to the destroyer-tender USS KLONDIKE (AD-22.) From July 1947 to January 1948,
he served aboard the USS GEORGE CLYMER (APA-27,) the flagship for Transport Division ELEVEN during the atomic bomb tests at Bikini Atoll in 1947. Following his initial afloat tours, he reported to the Naval Intelligence School in Washington DC followed by assignment in November 1948 to the Naval Security Station, Washington DC.
In November 1949, he commenced flight training in Pensacola, earning his wings in August 1951. His first aviation assignment was Patrol Squadron TEN (VP-10), followed by duty in March 1954 with Intelligence Special Projects in the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations. While in Washington DC, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Military Science from the University of Maryland.
In April 1957, he reported to the Persian Gulf as Aide and Flag Lieutenant, to Commander, Middle East Force. This was followed in October 1958 by duty as pilot and Maintenance Officer in Airborne Early Warning Squadron FOUR (VW-4) flying the WC-121N Lockheed Super Constellation in a Hurricane Hunter role, critical in the days before the advent of weather satellites. (The WC-121N replaced the P-2V Neptune in this role after a Neptune was lost with all hands penetrating the eye-wall of Hurricane Janet in 1955.) From October 1960 he served in the Bureau of Naval Personnel as Assistant to the Assistant Director for Aviation Captains Detail. Following training with Fleet Airborne Electronics Training Unit, he reported in July 1963 of Patrol Squadron SEVEN as Operations Officer, then Executive Officer, and in May 1965 assumed command of the squadron, converting from the P2V-5F to SP-2H Neptune ASW and patrol aircraft and included operations from Iceland.
In August 1966 he attended the National War College in Washington DC, while earning a Master of Science in International Affairs from George Washington University. He then became Executive Assistant to the Deputy Under Secretary of the Navy for Manpower in August 1967, and then served as Executive Assistant and Naval Aide to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) for which he was awarded a Legion of Merit.
In December 1969, then Captain Toole assumed command of the "jumboized" oiler USS MISPILLION (AO-105) during combat operations in the Vietnam area, for which MISPILLION was awarded a Meritorious Unit Commendation. In December 1970, he assumed command of USS IWO JIMA (LPH-2) for additional Vietnam combat support operations. In July 1972, he reported as Commander Amphibious Group ONE, for which he received a Legion of Merit for directing SEVENTH Fleet amphibious operation off Vietnam. On 1 May 1973 he was advanced to Rear Admiral. In July 1973 he became Commander Patrol Force, SEVENTH Fleet, Commander Patrol Wing ONE, and Commander Task Force SEVENTY-TWO.
As a flag officer, he served as the Commander of the Philadelphia Naval Base and was Commandant of the Naval Districts in Philadelphia, New York, and Boston at the same time, retiring in 1977. At some point he authored a mystery novel, several published articles on military affairs and as the short story master suspense-builder of Alfred Hitchcock and Mike Shayne's Mystery Magazines.
In addition to awards listed above, his awards also included the China Service Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, Navy Occupation Service Medal (Asia Clasp,) two National Defense Service Medals, four Vietnam Service Medals, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (Korea), and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal with Device. He also received the Order of the Cloud and Banner from the Republic of China.
Rear Admiral Toole served our nation with distinction in a wide variety of assignments, often dangerous ones from Hurricane Hunter to combat operations along the coast of Vietnam. He was a leader in ASW and Patrol operations as the Soviet Navy became an increasingly larger, more dangerous, and more forward-deployed force in the 1960's, and as Commander of U.S. Patrol forces in the Far East, his aircraft were responsible for detecting and tracking
attempts by North Vietnam to reinforce and resupply communist forces in South Vietnam, as well as dealing with continuing crises in Korea, China, and a resurgent Soviet Pacific Fleet. The Navy and our nation were well served by his dedicated efforts.