Morgan M. France
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Virginia Beach - Captain Morgan M. (Rick) France USN/Ret died December 26, 2012, at the age of 77. He was born in Oswego, NY to the late Morgan M. France and Edna Lillian Parks. Following his graduation from Oswego High School, he attended the College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, MA graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree and a commission in the U.S. Navy Reserve through the NROTC program. He reported to naval air flight training, Pensacola, FL and was designated a Naval Aviator commencing a 30 year naval career which included a variety of assignments from air transport service to carrier jet aviation. His first squadron was VR22 where he was designated a Mats Trans Atlantic Aircraft Commander and Flight Examiner in DC6/C118 type aircraft. While attending Auburn University as an NROTC Instructor, he received a Master of Arts Degree in international relations. His following assignments included submarine warfare as a Command Pilot in S2F flying with VS26 off the Carrier USS Randolph; Aerobatic and Formation Flight Instructor with VT9, Meridian ,MS; carrier based jet attack aircraft flying A6A Intruder deployed to Vietnam with VA65 onboard USS Kitty Hawk and served as Commanding Officer of Attack Squadron 75. Captain France was later navigator of USS Independence and Flag Secretary to Commander U. S. Naval Air Forces U. S. Atlantic Fleet. Selected for deep draft command, he served as Commanding Officer of USS Elpaso (IKA 117), followed by subsequent selection for major sequential command and assignment as Commander Amphibious Squadron 8. During this period, Captain France also served as Commander Task Force 61, U. S. Sixth Fleet and Commander U. S. Multi National Force, Lebanon. Captain France completed his 30 year naval career as Chief of Staff, Amphibious Group Two. During his naval career Captain France received numerous awards and citations including 2 Legion of Merit Awards, 2 Meritorious Service Awards; and 14 Air Medals (2 individual and 12 Strike Flight Awards), 3 Navy Commendation Awards with Combat "V" and numerous other Unit and Campaign Awards. In addition to the above, Captain France was awarded the "Order of the Cedar Medal" by the President of Lebanon. Following his retirement from the U. S. Navy, Captain France worked in the ship repair industry in the Norfolk area including 21 years with George G. Sharp, Inc as Program and Division Manager. During his lifetime
Captain France loved music and sports but most of all he loved his grandchildren and family.
Captain France is survived by his wife of 53 years, Kay Kellam France; three sons; Morgan, III, and his wife Kelley of Manteo, NC: Mark and his wife Traci of Manteo, NC and Kellam of Manteo, NC, four grandchildren; Lauren, Morgan, IV, Delaney Rose, Mark Chandler and a sister, Mildred Sauter of Cicero, NY.
A chapel service will be held at 1:00 PM, Saturday, December 29, 2012 at H. D. Oliver Funeral Apts. 2002 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach, VA, 23454. The family will receive friends at the funeral home one hour prior to the service from 12:00 to 1:00 PM. The burial will be held at Arlington National Cemetery. The family requests that in lieu flowers, memorial contributions should be made to outreach for Christ, PO Box 4326, Virginia Beach, VA 23454. Condolences may be made to email@example.com.
Published in The Virginian Pilot on Dec. 28, 2012