The man dubbed the “oldest living general” will celebrate his 107th birthday in Riverside Saturday, with an honor guard salute, proclamations and other tributes.
Retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Harry E. Goldsworthy is not alone among American military centenarians.
Fellow USAF retiree Robert L. “Bob” Cardenas, a legendary test pilot who left the service as a brigadier general, turned 101 last month.
Cardenas resides in San Diego.
Goldsworthy, who was born in 1914, will be honored in an hourlong event near his residence in Westmont Village, a gated retirement community for former military personnel that sits adjacent to March Air Reserve Base.
Goldsworthy retired from active service in 1973. His wife, Edith, died a decade ago.
According to organizers of the celebration, Riverside Mayor Patricia Lock-Dawson will formally present him with a City Council proclamation.
The Patriot Guard Riders, a group of military veteran motorcyclists, will be on hand as part of a flag ceremony that will also involve non-commissioned officers from March.
Two sergeants will present Goldsworthy with a certificate of appreciation for his national service.
Goldsworthy began his military service as a U.S. Army infantry reservist, following graduation from Washington State College in 1936.
After working as an insurance salesman and doing a stint with the U.S. Soil Conservation Service, he applied for admission to the U.S. Army Air Corps and was accepted for flight training as a second lieutenant.
According to his biography, he served most of World War II flying submarine patrols around Puerto Rico and the east coast until he was assigned to fly missions in campaigns against the Japanese in 1945.
After the war, he held a series of posts:
- Commanding a bomber group at Carswell Air Force Base in Texas,
- Working as a weapons system evaluator for the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
- Serving as vice commander of the 4061st Air Refueling Wing at Malmstron Air Force Base in Montana
- Serving as Activation Task Force commander for the Minuteman Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Wing, also in Montana.
His last assignment before retirement was as deputy chief of staff for systems and logistics at Air Force Headquarters in Washington, D.C.