On a Rear Admiral

George loved the navy. He made it his life. From the late 1930s, his almost forty years if service to the United States carried him to almost every continent and ocean. George did it right, too. He graduated from Annapolis in 1941, immediately before the start of World War 2.  In fact, George made it to Honolulu in time to be an eyewitness to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

George distinguished himself during the war and rose through the ranks quickly. The Navy, short of staff officers at the beginning of the war, sometimes promoted men faster than they could get the rank changed on their uniforms. He took flight training in Pensacola, and he flew missions In the Pacific theater for the entirety of the war. In Hawaii, he met a pretty girl named Clara in 1942 and married her there.

Over the next six years, three children – – James, Anne, and Andrew – – were born to the couple as James hopscotched around the globe to different postings.  Sadly, George wasn’t home much to enjoy the family and watch his kids grow up day today. That’s the price American military personnel often pay to serve their country, a price that the public usually doesn’t realize.

He became heavily involved in military action during the Korean conflict and later thwarted arted a North Korean incursion into South Korea. In 1964, George found himself in charge of the US the fleet in a gulf off the coast of Vietnam—the Gulf of Tonkin, in fact—when an attack there led directly to  President Lyndon Johnson ordering an American response that developed into the Vietnam war.   And, as that war wound down, George directed efforts at removing pro-American Vietnamese from Saigon to Guam.

Yes, it can be fairly said that George was involved in every major American naval action from World War II through the mid-1970s when he retired with the rank of Rear Admiral.  The long list of citations and the ribbons that George proudly wore on his chest testified to the time that George was away from his wife and 3 kids.  Upon his 1975 retirement, George looked forward to being able to make up a little bit for all those years that he missed.

Sadly, George’s oldest, James, had died in 1971.  George was not close to the boy, and it’s easy to see why. In fact, that lack of a strong relationship was a regret that George would take to his own grave.  Yes, Rear Admiral George Stephen Morrison served his country well, even though he felt like he had not done the same to his family.

You know his oldest son as Jim Morrison.

 

 

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