Carl was born on a farm in Oklahoma City on Jun 14, 1923. He was a very smart young man that loved math however he had to work hard to help support his family in a time that our history was at great economic depression and military conflict in world. In 1941, after turning 18 years old Carl was required to sign up for the Selective Training and Service Act where men were drafter to fill vacancies in the United States Armed Forces. 5 months later in November he and a few friends decided to join the Army Air Corp to serve their country and travel the world. Interesting note is the Army Air Corp changed over to its own service as the United State Air Force on Sept 18, 1947. In boot camp they were put thought hard physical and mental training however, this Boot camp thing must have felt like a vacation for him because Carl worked harder on the farm with less. On Dec 8, 1941 Advance Individual Training was cut short when the Japanese had bomb Pearl Harbor in Hawaii Territory killing more than 2,300 Americas and declared WAR against the United States. The next few day Carl’s class of trainees was sent to new duty stations to fill vacancy and prep for war. Because Carl was so good at math his job was aircraft refueling and operations. Later he moved into aircraft maintenance and then became a subject matter expert on aircraft, fuel and maintenance.
A year later at a young age of 19, Carl married the love of his life Dorothy Salisbury on Nov 11, 1942 and reenlisted with dependents. For the next 31 years, 8 months and 7 days, Carl was on Active duty or Reserve continuing to serve the United States all over the world. Unfortunately, military records are not very clear during the war on exactly where Carl served and when he was promoted however on July 25, 1973 at the age of 50 the Department of The Air Force gave Master Sargent (E-7) Carl Owens an Honorable Discharge and transferred him to retirement status.
For 70 years Carl and Dorothy enjoyed life together traveling all over the U.S. until June of 2012 when Dorothy passed away at the age of 91. Together Carl and Dorothy had 3 sons, 17 Grandkids, 21 Great Grandkids, and 15 Great-Great Grandkids. Carl had thousands of stories about life, hard times, easy times, love, and death. Even to this day, if you sit down with him he will tell you story of ages pass and the fish that got away.
He has seen so many wars, i.e. The Occupation of Nicaragua, Occupation of Haiti, Occupation of Dominican Republic, The Last Indian Uprising in Utah, World War II, Korean War, Laotian Civil War, Lebanon Crisis, Cuba war, Vietnam War, Communist Insurgency in Thailand, Korean DMZ Conflict, Dominican Civil War, Insurgency in Bolivia, Cambodian Civil War, plus another 12 wars since retirement.
What an accomplishment, Carl has lived the dream of us all; he’s was retired longer than he worked and lived out his days drives around town in his Golf Cart enjoying the Florida air.
Today, We want to recognize Carl Owens for his selfless service to this country, to his friends, and to his loving family. I say to “Sir, Well done Carl, Well Done!”