Robert H. Thompson, Jr.
Aviation Electronics Technician 3rd Class
U. S. Navy
Dates of Service: 06/02/1971 - 05/22/1973
Electronics Technician, USS Constellation. Recon Squadron
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Robert is a native of Abington, Pennsylvania, where he was born in Abington Memorial Hospital. His father was Robert Hardy Thompson, who worked in the Philadelphia Naval Yard in World War II until 1943 when he went into the service. In Mississippi his great-great grandfather founded Hattiesburg, named for his wife, Hattie, as well as Laurel and Gulfport. Robert's ancestors fought in the 16th Mississippi Infantry during the Civil War and he is a member of Sons of Confederate Veterans. Robert attended Pennsbury High School in Fairless Hills, Pennsylvania and graduated in 1968. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1970 and went on two Aircraft Carrier cruises for nine months of duty near Vietnam. "That was the horrible thing about being in the Vietnam War. We dropped 91,000 bombs on North Vietnam in nine months," he states. His carrier was also the one that mined North Vietnam's Haiphong Harbor on 8 May 1972, upon orders from President Richard Nixon. After the Pacific cruise he returned to Albany, Georgia where he received training on digital data systems and side-looking radar and infrared mapping devices. Robert completed his active duty service and did three years of reserves which took him to duty in Spain and other countries.