HAMPTON, Va. – The long-time director of the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command‘s Aviation Integration Directorate was inducted in the Army Materiel Command Hall of Fame.
The induction took place during a ceremony at Joint Base Langley-Eustis on Thursday, January 24.
John L. Shipley has served as the AID director since 1982. AMC Commander, Gen. Gus Perna, presided over the induction ceremony, at which Shipley officially retired after more than 60 years of service to the Nation.
Established in 2012, the U.S. Army Materiel Command Hall of Fame was established in 2012 and it honors and memorializes those Soldiers and civilians who have made significant and enduring contributions to AMC and the Army.
Shortly after graduating from high school, Shipley began his career of service in 1954. He served in the 11th and 82nd Airborne Divisions until 1956. Shipley graduated from North Caroline State University in 1960, after his enlistment, with a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. In 1966, he finished his master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering.
As AID director, Shipley was responsible for the development, acquisition, modernization, fielding and sustainment of the U.S. Army‘s Special Operations’ classified and unclassified aviation fleet. These low-density, high-demand classified and unclassified enablers provide the needed capability for Special Operations forces to find, fix and finish targets of national interest anywhere in the world under all conditions.
“As a result of his planning and vision, the Department of Defense and the Army, in particular, have the most capable aircraft in the world. These aircraft and – most importantly – their crews are able to safely operate in extreme environmental and threat conditions. His accomplishments significantly benefit conventional Army aviation and other agencies by assisting with and transferring capabilities, where appropriate,” said Maj. Gen. Dough Gabram, command of the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command.
Shipley has received numerous awards over his career of service: four Presidential Rank Awards, three meritorious and one distinguished.
He also received the Order of St Michael Award, both in bronze and gold and the Department of the Army Superior Civilian Service Award.
He has been named the Civilian of the Year for both the Army Aviation Association of America and the Joseph P. Cribbins, Redstone/ Huntsville Chapter of the Association of the United States Army. Also, he was the first civilian selected as an honorary member of the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne).
In his closing remarks, Shipley thanked Gabram for addressing issues in the aviation supply chain.
“There are a lot of Soldiers and the parents of those Soldiers who thank you for making sure the aircraft is safe, survivable and a piece of equipment they can operate. These are the Soldiers that if someone needs rescuing, they go get them.”
Shipley also offered a bit of advice to those in attendance.
“Take care of your family. Take care of yourself. And, take care of those who serve our country.”