Richard Carr – Major General (Chaplain), United States Air Force

From a contemporary press report:

Richard Carr, 76, an Air Force Major General who served as Chief of Chaplains from 1978 to 1982, died November 9, 2002, at his home in Springfield, Virginia. He had leukemia.

As chief of chaplains, General Carr became an adviser to Air Force personnel on religious and moral matters; did extensive work in issues affecting prisoners of war and those missing in action; played a major role in smoothing over race relations; and was especially known for marriage enrichment programs that he led with his wife.

After retiring, he became an adviser and consultant to humanitarian agencies from Africa to Europe. He was a founder of what is now the Global Development Center, which helps emergency relief efforts, and opened the Washington office of World Vision, another aid agency.

He also was a former national chaplain for the Air Force Association and interim associate pastor of National Presbyterian Church.

At his death, General Carr was board chairman of the North American Family Renewal Institute, which conducts studies on stress in military families.

He was a native of El Centro, California, and a 1949 graduate of Whitworth College in Spokane, Washington. In 1954, he received a master's degree in divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary in California and was ordained as a minister in the United Church of Christ.

He enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Forces in 1943 and was a B-24 radio operator-gunner in the South Pacific during World War II.

During the Korean War, he was called to active duty in the Air Force and served with air rescue squadrons. After the war, Los Angeles County appointed him to do special social work among the minority population.

He then spent a decade as a chaplain at U.S. air bases from Bermuda to Korea. In 1976, he became deputy chief of chaplains, with the grade of Brigadier General.

His military decorations include the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, two awards of the Legion of Merit, four awards of the Meritorious Service Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal.

Survivors include his wife of 47 years, Jeanne Robertson Carr of Springfield; three children, David Carr of Fairfax County, Kevin Carr of Woodbridge and Cathie Lewis of San Antonio; two brothers; a sister; and four grandchildren.

Richard Carr, Chaplain, Major General, USAF, Retired, died on  Saturday, November 9, 2002 at home in Springfield, Virginia.

Husband of Jeanne M. Carr; father of David  R. Carr, Catherine L. Lewis and Kevin R. Carr; grandfather of Oliver Ryan and Aaron R. Lewis and Lucy A. and Travis M. Carr.

Memorial services will be held on Monday, November 18, 2 p.m. at the National  Presbyterian  Church, 4101 Nebraska Ave., N.W., Washington, DC, 20016.

Funeral  services  with  Full  Military Honors will be held on Wednesday, December 4, 3 p.m. at Arlington National Cemetery, with friends and family assembling at the administration building at 2:30 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Association of Couples  for Marriage Enrichment, PO Box 10596, Winston-Salem, NC 27108 or Young Life Ministry, Washington, DC,  c/o National Presbyterian Church at the above address.

Courtesy of the United States Air Force:

Retired Aug. 1, 1982

Chaplain (Major General) Richard Carr was the chief of chaplains, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. As a member of the special staff of the chief of staff, he advised on all matters that pertained to the religious and moral welfare of Air Force personnel. He was also responsible for establishing an effective total chaplain program that will meet the religious needs of all members of the Air Force.

Chaplain Carr was born in El Centro, California, in 1925, and graduated from Central Union High School in 1943. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in May 1943 and served as a B-24 radio operator-gunner in the South Pacific with the 431st Bomber Squadron, 11th Bombardment Group. He was released from active duty after returning from overseas in April 1946.

He then entered Whitworth College in Spokane, Washington, and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in June 1949. In May 1950, after completing one year of graduate school work at Fuller Theological Seminary at Pasadena, California. Chaplain Carr accepted a position with the Marine Medical Mission in Alaska as a student missionary. While serving in this position he was recalled to active duty in March 1951, following the outbreak of hostilities in Korea. He served with the 3rd and 4th Air Rescue Squadrons.

Chaplain Carr was again released from active duty in 1952 and completed his graduate studies at Fuller Theological Seminary in 1954. He was ordained February 14, 1954, as a minister of the United Church of Christ and served churches in Pasadena and Los Angeles, Calif. It was during this time that he was appointed by the county of Los Angeles to do special social work among the minority population of Los Angeles. As such, he was a pioneer in the early human relations activities involving community and church programs in Southern California.

Chaplain Carr began his Air Force chaplain affiliation as a civilian minister when he was appointed first lieutenant in the Air Force Reserve May 18, 1954, and served as group chaplain for the 452nd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing at Long Beach Air Force Base, California.

He was recalled to active duty as an Air Force chaplain July 29, 1955. During the next 10 years, he served at Perrin Air Force Base, Texas; Osan Air Base, Korea; Williams Air Force Base, Arizona; Kindley Air Base, Bermuda; and Mather Air Force Base, California.

In 1965, Chaplain Carr was assigned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., in the Office of the Chief of Chaplains, where he served as chief, personnel actions and manpower programs, Personnel Division, until July 1969. From 1969 to 1970, he served as region chaplain, Pacific Security Region, U.S. Air Force Security Service at Wheeler Air Force Base, Hawaii. In July 1970, he was assigned as chaplain of the 314th Air Division, Osan Air Base, Korea, for a 13-month tour of duty. During this period, Chaplain Carr worked in early programs of race relations and social actions, forerunners of the development of the Air Force human relations programs.

In August 1971, upon his return from Korea, Chaplain Carr was assigned as 9th Air Force staff chaplain at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, and the following year he was assigned to Headquarters Tactical Air Command, Langley Air Force Base, Virginia, where he served as chief, Budget and Logistics Division; chief, Professional Division; and as command chaplain from July 1974 to August 1976. In August 1976, he became deputy chief of chaplains, U.S. Air Force, with the grade of brigadier general. In August 1978, he assumed the position of chief of chaplains.

Chaplain Carr's military decorations include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal and other service awards for World War II and the Korean War.

Chaplain Carr has been an active community and religious leader during his career as clergyman. His most recent activities include chairman of the Military Chaplain Study Group for the United Church of Christ, a responsibility that involved an extensive study of United Church of Christ clergymen serving in the military chaplaincy and the role of the church's service to military personnel.

Chaplain Carr has been a leader in developing marriage and family life programs in the Air Force chaplaincy and is active in conducting workshops and seminars on Air Force bases worldwide.

He was promoted to the grade of Major General November 1, 1978, with date of rank July 1, 1975.


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