Young County Heroes

They Paid Dearly That We Might Live Freely. Remember Them.

Johnson, Orvel

Service Branch: 

Orvel Johnson grew up in Graham, Texas and entered the Navy from Graham on June 19, 1959. He attended recruit training at Recruit Training Center in San Diego, CA.  His first permanent duty station was the USS RANKIN, an auxiliary ship, and he participated in the Cuba missile blockade in October of 1962.  He was the senior court reporter and part-time investigator at NTC San Diego for several years, and then assumed duties involving naval intelligence aboard the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk for 18 months. During that time he participated in action in the South China Sea in support of the Vietnam conflict.  In 1967 he was transferred to a reconnaissance squadron positioned in Atsugi, Japan, collecting intelligence information in and around Vietnam.  After 3 years duty in Japan, he spent 5 ½ years as the senior enlisted man in the Privacy Communications Section of the Defense Intelligence Agency at the Pentagon in Washington DC.  He was then assigned to a special operations group that was involved in developing an improved intelligence gathering capability (in California).   He retired from there Dec. 29, 1977 as a YNCS (E8) and returned to Graham after his retirement.

During his career, he was awarded the following awards and citations:

Commendation letter from the Deputy Secretary of Defense
Joint Services Commendation Medal
Navy Commendation Medal
Navy Unit Commendation Medal
Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation (2 oak leaf clusters)
Good Conduct Medal (3 oak leaf clusters)
Navy Expeditionary Medal
National Defense Service Medal (oak leaf cluster)
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Vietnam Service Medal
Vietnam Campaign Medal (60s date bar)

Information supplied by individual.