Each day, the VA honors a special military veteran for their dedicated service on their blog, VAntage Point. Today’s veteran is Air Force, Army and Navy Veteran Charles Crabtree, who served during a career spanning from the 1950s to 1990s.
Charles Crabtree was born and raised in Henderson, Kentucky in June 1939. He joined the service in 1958 and was on active duty in both the Air Force and Navy until 1971.
While in the Navy, Crabtree served on the USS Hancock as part of the X Division and Hancock public affairs office. He worked as a journalist assisting with the ship’s newspaper, publications, and cruise book, as well as the correspondence and coverage of the Vietnam War. He was also station manager of the local Armed Forces Network and ran radio operations aboard the ship.
During his following tours of duty, Crabtree was a part of three cruises to the Gulf of Tonkin in North Vietnamese waters. When he was discharged from the Navy in 1971, he returned home to Kentucky and went on to be a part of the National Guard and Army Reserve from 1978 to 1999. During that time, he served a tour in Okinawa, where he met his wife, Kimiko.
Crabtree received good Conduct Medals from the Army, Navy, and Air Force, along with personal and Vietnam service awards. He went on to organize Veterans Day events and serve on the Board of the Henderson War Memorial Foundation in his hometown, earning him the Community Service Award from the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Crabtree passed away on October 10th, 2019, leaving behind three children, four grandchildren, four great grandchildren, and his wife of 58 years.
We honor his service.