SMSgt Gaylord Hall, USAF (Ret) May 14, 1922 - December 8, 2016.
Gaylord Hall, 94, died peacefully on Thursday, December 8, 2016 surrounded by his family at the Eglin Air Force Base Hospital.
Gaylord was born in Watseka, Illinois and lived there for the first 14 years where he completed grade school. He lived in Crescent City where he graduated from high school in 1940. He is preceded in death by his father, Burtt Hall; mother, Lillian Hall; brothers, Maurice Hall and Bob Hall; sister, Betty Hall; and daughter and son in law, Gayle and David Peters. He is survived by Gerry Hall, his wife of 74 years; Debbie and Dusty Reed, daughter and son in law; Judy and Wayne Golding, daughter and son in law; Keith Golding, grandson; Amy Golding, granddaughter; Geri and David Higgs, granddaughter and grandson in law; Dawn Polk, granddaughter; David Peters III, grandson; Kara Polk, great granddaughter; Danny Polk, great grandson.
He enlisted in the Air Force in 1940 and spent his first year at Chanute Air Force Base. He was assigned to Keesler Air Force Base from 1941 until 1942 where he served as an instructor for aircraft maintenance. From 1942 to 1943, he was assigned to Gulfport Air Force Station as an instructor for multi-engine transport aircraft.
In 1943 until 1945, he was assigned to the 14th Air Force in China under the famed Flying Tigers Commander, Major General Claire Lee Chennault, primarily in support of the Office of Strategic Services in World War II. Gaylord was in the 14th Air Force transport section and flew missions from his home base at Kunming, China in a single C-47 most of the time. He performed maintenance for the C-47’s.
In late 1945 he was discharged after World War II had ended. He reenlisted at Chanute Air Force Base in 1946. He performed maintenance for the B-25’s.
From 1949 to 1951, he was assigned to Anderson Air Force Base at Guam where he served as a flight mechanic and performed maintenance for B-17’s and T6’s.
From 1951 until 1954, he was assigned to Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama where he served as a flight mechanic and provided maintenance for B-25’s, C-47’s, and B-17’s.
From 1955 until 1959, he was assigned to Tachikawa Air Base, Japan where he was in charge of maintenance of the C-54 transports.
In 1960, he was assigned to the Strategic Air Command at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana and performed maintenance for C-124’s.
In 1961, he was assigned to the “Jungle Jim Operation” at Hurlburt Field, Florida. He attended the Global Survival School and Jungle Survival School. The entire year was devoted to the orientation for Air Commandos. In 1962, he was in charge of maintenance for the re-introduction of the C-46 transports. In 1963, he spent six months at Howard Air Force Base, Panama providing maintenance for T-28’s and C-46’s. In 1964 through 1965, he was working in the aircraft link trainer section.
In 1966 until 1969, he was assigned to England Air Force Base , Louisiana and performed as the Line Chief providing maintenance for the 317th Troop Carrier Squadron servicing C-47’s.
In 1969 until 1970, he was assigned once again to Hurlburt Field, Florida and was in charge of maintenance at Holly Field servicing U-10’s, O-2’s, and O-1’s.
In 1970 and 1971, Gaylord was on a six month Air Commando temporary duty assignment to Laos in each of those years.
In 1972, he was assigned to Hurlburt Field, Florida where he was in charge of maintenance for OV-10’s. He retired from the Air Force in September 1972.
His decorations and awards included Aircraft Maintenance Badge, Crew Member Badge, Bronze Star with V device, Asiatic-Pacific Theater Ribbon with 2 Bronze Stars, American Defense Ribbon, Commendation Ribbon with Medal from CINC of UNC/USFK, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with 1 OLC, Air Force Longevity Service Award with 5 OLC, National Defense Service Medal with 1 BS, and Small Arms Expert Marksmanship.
He was a lifetime member of the Air Commando Association, and he was inducted into the Air Commando Hall of Fame in 1994. He began his affiliation with the Air Commando Association in 1973. He served in the following capacities from 1975 until 2000: Treasurer, OIC of Newsletter, OIC of Membership Committee, and the McCoskrie Threshold Foundation Treasurer.
Gaylord earned a Master’s Degree in Guidance and Counseling from University of West Florida in 1976.