Sen. Tom Carper will be inducted into the Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame on Nov. 3.
The Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame was established to honor aviation greats and promote public recognition of aviation’s role in the progress of Delaware and in defense of the U.S. Each year, the trustees of the Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame select six individuals based on contributions to the advancement of flight in Delaware, achievement in aviation bringing credit to the state and gallantry in aviation by a Delawarean in service to their country.
Carper served on active duty as a naval flight officer during the Vietnam War. For most of that active duty, Carper served as a patrol plane tactical coordinator before qualifying as a P-3 aircraft mission commander in his last year of active duty. When Carper’s active duty tour came to end in 1973, he took a reserve commission and continued to fly an additional 18 years in the Naval Reserve as a P-3 aircraft mission commander, primarily tracking Soviet submarines in the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea until retiring with the rank of captain in 1991.
As a congressman, governor and senator, Carper has advocated for the state’s aviation assets, including Dover Air Force Base, New Castle County Airport, Delaware Airpark and Delaware Coastal Airport.