Veterans History Project: An Interview with Arthur Lee

Library of Congress Veterans History Project

Interview conducted by Jeanne Czarnecki and produced by David Addison. Recorded at Headquarters, Santa Cruz Public Libraries, May 19, 2016.

Born in San Diego, CA in November 1928, Arthur R. Lee, son of a naval machinist assigned to Pearl Harbor, enlisted in the Navy at age of 17. It was in Alameda Air Station that he found his true calling as a flight mechanic. Lee was assigned to Guam several times, with the first time in 1950 at the beginning of the Korean War. Later his squadron flew from Moffett Field to Pacific islands delivering high priority parts in a rotation resembling the Pony Express. After 12 years of service, he was assigned to ship duty on the USS Ranger. In 1970, he received orders to Cam Rahn, Vietnam, as an Assistant Aircraft Officer in the Naval Air Facility. Lee is a recipient of many medals and service awards, such as the WWII Victory Medal, the Korean War Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm and a Purple Heart. Lee achieved the rank of commander. After 30 years of military service, he retired and returned to school on the GI Bill to complete a masters' degree in Business Management. Lee is a published author for such journals as Smithsonian, Air & space, Vietnam magazine, and Sea magazine. Married with four children, he currently lives in Santa Cruz, and is an honorary member of the Santa Cruz Pearl Harbor Survivors group.
Creator: Lee, Arthur; Czarnecki, Jeanne; Addison, David
Date: 5/19/2016
  • Santa Cruz (County)
  • 2010s
  • 1970s
Rights: Permission must be obtained before using the interview or other materials in exhibition or publication. Researchers or others who would like to make further use of these materials should contact Santa Cruz Public Libraries for assistance.
Identifier: VH-LEE


Lee, Arthur, Jeanne Czarnecki, and David Addison. “Veterans History Project: An Interview with Arthur Lee.” 5/19/2016. SCPL Local History. Accessed 16 Apr. 2024.