Hayward, ADM Thomas H.


1978 TLS as CNO to Commandant, US Army War College, accepts invitation to speak with restriction on foreign students present!


Type:  Letter
Description: (1924-2022) Hayward enlisted in the Navy V-5 aviation program soon after Pearl Harbor, called to active duty as a naval aviation cadet 1943, anticipating flying combat in the South Pacific. However, halfway through the flight training syllabus, he was accepted at  the US Naval Academy, graduating in 1947. In 1949, he returned to flight training at Pensacola and received his naval aviator wings in 1950.

In the Korean War, he was a lieutenant j.g. and reported to Flight Squadron VF-51 (“the Screaming Eagles”)  and flew on the aircraft carriers USS Essex and USS Valley, flying 146 combat missions, and awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), 7 Air Medals, and 2 Navy Commendation Medals with Combat V for Valor. One of Hayward’s squadron mates in VF-51 was future astronaut Neil Armstrong, his lifelong friend.

After his Korean tour, Hayward became a test pilot, a lead instructor in the forerunner to the Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN), and Commanding Officer of  Flight Squadron VF-103 (“the Jolly Rogers”). He attended the Naval War College in 1958 and in 1959 was one of  32 finalists for NASA Astronaut Group 1, ultimately not selected.

In 1965–66, as Commander Carrier Air Wing Ten (CW-10), Hayward flew 36 Vietnam combat missions, from USS Intrepid, receiving the Legion of Merit and 3 Air Medals. In 1967, he attended the National War College and obtained a master’s degree in Foreign Affairs from George Washington University. As a captain, Hayward returned to Vietnam as Commanding Officer of USS Graffias  and later as 1978-82 CO of Kitty Hawk-class supercarrier USS America, for which he was awarded the Legion of Merit. He then had tours of duty as US 7th Fleet CO 1975-76, then Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet 1976-78.  As Chief of Naval Operations, Hayward is best remembered for his “Pride in the Navy” priority: emphasis on rebuilding readiness of active and reserve forces; restoring priority in mine warfare; and his success in the zero tolerance “Not in my Navy” drug program. In 1981, he was awarded the Society of Experimental Test Pilots James H. Doolittle Award and In January 2007, the US Naval Academy Alumni Association announced Admiral Hayward as one of 4 recipients of its 2007 Distinguished Graduate Award. After retirement, his primary efforts were in the field of education.

TLS as Admiral on 8 ¼ x 7 Chief of Naval Operations letterhead with flag at top left corner, (Washington), December 2 1978, to Maj. Gen. DeWitt C. Smith, Jr., US Army War College Commandant,Carlisle Barracks, Penna. ADM Hayward accepts with pleasure GEN Smith’s invitation to address students and faculty at the Army War College on alternative date of 28 March 1979. He notes that the “…subject matter of my talk precludes attendance by foreign students” but will be pleased to meet with them and with USN and USMC students and faculty before lunch.

DeWITT C. SMITH, JR. (1920-1985) US Army officer, former deputy Army Chief of Staff, twice (and longest-serving) Army War College commandant 1974 -77, 1978-80. Joined the Army 1942, commissioned 2nd lieutenant, served with 4th Armor in combat after Normandy to end of the War. Wounded 3 times, he was awarded Silver Star, 2 Bronze Stars for Valor, and 3 Purple Hearts. Discharged 1946, returned to active duty for Korean War, stayed in the military. He was an aide to Army Chief of Staff Gen. Maxwell Taylor, served in the “Old Guard” at Fort Myer, and was a battalion executive officer and commander in Germany. He served at the Pentagon before going to the Army War College. He commanded  a  1st Infantry combat brigade in Vietnam. In 1970, under his leadership, Fort Carson, Colo. was made an initial test site for the modern volunteer Army concept. He retired in 1980.

Condition: Very good, 4 names noted at top right corner, likely for forwarding this acceptance) along with General Smith’s initials.

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