More detail on this person: Marine Corp Major
General Norman J. Anderson, 96, died September 6
at his home in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
His widow, Irene Fernandez Anderson is a native of Northfield.
General Anderson served for a time on the Norwich University Board of Fellows and was a frequent visitor to Northfield after his retirement from the Marine Corp in 1972.
A highly decorated veteran of three wars, General Anderson was a graduate of UCLA and continued his studies at Stanford.
Between 1942 and 1943, he saw action as a Marine aviator in the Solomon Islands, in the Bismarck Archipelago and Philippine campaigns. For heroism and distinguished service during this period, he was awarded three Distinguished Service Crosses and seven Air Medals.
In 1941, he lent the famous ace and his close friend, Greg "Pappy" Boyington $1,000 so that Pappy could go to China and fight for the Flying Tigers. It was money that General Anderson proudly recalled "was paid back in full and on time."
In Korea, then Colonel Anderson led air cover during the famous Inchon landing, executing close air support tactics that characterized Marine Air's approach to combat. For his valor in the Korean conflict, he was awarded the Silver Star, his fourth Distinguished Flying Cross and three more air medals.
General Anderson was very involved in Viet Nam as well where he earned the first of two Distinguished Service Medals and his eleventh Air Medal. He commanded the First Marine Air Wing at the time of the defense at Khe Sanh during the 1968 Tet offensive. He famously defended the Marine approach to close air support in a dispute with General William Westmoreland, winning the day for Marine Air's support to the battlefield. General Westmoreland, citing his disagreement with General Anderson, said that this was the one point in the war where he seriously thought of resigning.
After his retirement, General Anderson was for ten years the Executive Director of the MacArthur Memorial Foundation in Norfolk, Virginia. In that capacity and later as a member of the Foundation's Board, he helped to turn what had been a forgotten museum into a world class memorial for one of America's greatest warriors, Douglas MacArthur.
Throughout his career, he authored numerous articles on close air support including "Laurels At Low Tide," which described the Inchon landings.
He is survived by his wife of 54 years, his two sons, Norman Anderson of Fairfax, Virginia and Dr. Kirk Anderson of Flagstaff, Arizona and four grandchildren. Northfield News, The (VT) - Thursday, September 17, 2009
This information was last updated 05/18/2016
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Date posted on this site: 07/05/2021
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