Vice Adm. Joel T. Boone

Boone provided the nation's veterans with the medical attention they deserve, both in the trenches of World War I and World War II, and later as chief medical director of the Veterans Administration from 1951 to 1955.

"To every American Legionnaire, his name is synonymous with the finest possible hospital and medical care for disabled veterans," said Past National Commander Paul Griffith, presenting the Distinguished Service Medal to Boone. "For, in him, as in the vast medical program which he directed so capably for four arduous years, are combined the skilled competence of an experienced doctor and the compassion for his disabled comrades of one who knows well the suffering and hell of war."

"Under his direction, the practice of building new VA hospitals, wherever possible, close to leading medical centers in every section of the country, was continued and accelerated."

Between wars, Boone served with the American Red Cross and as medical officer on board the presidential yacht, USS Mayflower. From 1922 to 1933, he acted as physician to presidents Harding, Coolidge and Hoover. His career was full of other naval appointments before his retirement in 1950.

The heroic naval surgeon received many decorations, including the Medal of Honor, the Distinguished Service Cross, the Silver Star with two oak leaf clusters, and the Purple Heart with two oak leaf clusters.

Boone lived his final years in Washington, D.C., where he died in 1974, at 84. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

For more on Boone, click here (http://www.history.navy.mil/photos/pers-us/uspers-b/j-boone.htm).

 

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