- Gilbert L. Bever
Gilbert L. Bever, Lieutenant Commander, United States Navy, awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism while participating in aerial flight as the Pilot of an A-6E aircraft with Attack Squadron 35 embarked in USS SARATOGA (CV 60) on 17 January 1991. Lieutenant Commander Bever participated in the first SARATOGA/ Carrier Air Wing 17 strike of Operation DESERT STORM. This night mission was supported by dual carrier and U.S. Air Force SEAD operations. The target, Al Taqaddum Airfield, was located in the most heavily defended Iraqi area west of Baghdad. Despite encountering heavy flak, numerous surface to air missiles, and enemy fighters, Lieutenant Commander Bever piloted his A-6 aircraft to a high altitude dive attack. His attack destroyed the operations building and did extensive damage to the ramp and taxiways, contributing to the Allied Coalition’s dominance of the air throughout the conflict. Lieutenant Commander Bever’s outstanding leadership, aggressive initiative, and courageous devotion to duty in the face of hazardous flying conditions reflected great credit upon himself and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. Gilbert L. Bever is a member of the Distinguished Flying Cross Society.