Local veteran headlines annual Veterans Day program
by TP staff
Nov 08, 2012 | 2870 views | 1 1 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Fred Gowan will speak at the Veteran’s Day service at the Tracy War Memorial on Monday, Nov. 12.  Courtesy photo
Fred Gowan will speak at the Veteran’s Day service at the Tracy War Memorial on Monday, Nov. 12. Courtesy photo
Retired U.S. Army Maj. Fred A. Gowan of Tracy, a decorated helicopter pilot in the Vietnam War, will be principal speaker Monday, Nov. 12, at the annual Veterans Day observance.

The program will begin at 10 a.m. at the Tracy War Memorial on East Ninth Street in Tracy Civic Center.

Veterans of past and present armed conflicts will place a wreath before the memorial, which contains names of Tracy’s war dead since World War I.

Mayor Brent Ives will speak while presenting a Veterans Day proclamation from the Tracy City Council.

John Treantos, the president of the Tracy War Memorial Association, will be master of ceremonies.

Gowan, a Tracy resident since 1988, served two tours of duty in Vietnam, in 1966 and 1968, as the pilot of an Army helicopter gunship.

While flying 2,800 hours of combat duty, he earned the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star with Valor Clasp, 31 Air Medals, the Army Commendation Medal and the Vietnamese Cross of Valor with Silver Star.

The Army Command and General Staff College graduate would later serve in Laos, Thailand, Panama and Korea. Gowan was director of international traffic at the Oakland Army Base and deputy commander of the Army Port of Pusan, Korea, before retiring in from the Army in 1988 after 27 years of service.

He has served as a chapter and regional president of the National Defense Transportation Association. He and his wife, Carolyn, have two sons and five grandchildren.

VA opens one-day clinic for local veterans

All U.S. military veterans can learn about benefits and take advantage of examinations, consultations and referrals Thursday, Nov. 15, at American Legion Post 172, 1960 N. Tracy Blvd.

Services will be offered by the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System’s Rural Health Mobile Medical Team from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday. No appointments are needed.

Veterans and their families can find out about eligibility for medical and psychological services and get help with enrollment and claims.

Those who are not yet in the VA system should take an extra copy of their DD214 discharge papers to submit as they enroll.

The medical outreach event is presented in collaboration with the local Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion posts.

For information: Valerie Gabriel, 588-2604; or Vaughn Gates, 985-8092

• Contact Sam Matthews at 830-4234 or shm@tracypress.com.

Comments-icon Post a Comment
November 09, 2012
I just came across this story and this seemed like a good place to post the link:


For any American who does not know about the Tuskegee Airmen I suggest doing some research to learn who they are and what they went through to serve our great country in spite of the odds and prejudice they faced. These men were hero's in every sense of the word and should stand as a shining example of what can be accomplished through grit and determination.

We encourage readers to share online comments in this forum, but please keep them respectful and constructive. This is not a space for personal attacks, libelous statements, profanity or racist slurs. Comments that stray from the topic of the story or are found to contain abusive language are subject to removal at the Press’ discretion, and the writer responsible will be subject to being blocked from making further comments and have their past comments deleted. Readers may report inappropriate comments by e-mailing the editor at tpnews@tracypress.com.