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Veteran Spotlight: Virgil Carter

Today's spotlight is U.S. Navy veteran Virgil Carter. (U.S. Air Force illustration by David Perry)

Today's spotlight is U.S. Navy veteran Virgil Carter. (U.S. Air Force illustration by David Perry)

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah --

Today’s spotlight is U.S. Navy veteran Virgil Carter.

Virgil grew up in Garland, Utah, and enlisted in the Navy in 1950, two weeks after the start of the Korean War. He served for five years before separating with an honorable discharge in 1955.

While in the Navy, Virgil was first stationed aboard the aircraft carrier USS Boxer-CVA 21. Attached to Task Force 77, 7th Fleet, he worked on the flight deck as a member of the crash fire crew.

Virgil has several memorable moments will serving, including an amazing run from California to Japan.

“When the Korean War broke out, the Air Force was in the immediate need of aircraft in theater,” Virgil recalled.  “So they loaded up the USS Boxer’s flight deck and hanger decks, completely full of Air Force P-51s. The ship then made a record run from Alameda, California, to Japan, in just seven days. I believe at the time, this cruise set a record. The normal cruise would stop in Hawaii, for fuel and to resupply, but we bypassed the islands and went straight through.”

The USS Boxer was also awarded the Presidential Unit Citation.

Virgil’s second assignment was at Naval Air Station Barbers Point, on the island of Oahu, Hawaii, where he became an aircraft mechanic.

Virgil now resides in Bountiful, Utah, and has enjoyed golf and retirement, as well as volunteering at the Hill AFB Museum.

Thank you for your service Virgil.