One of the nation’s leading refrigerated carriers honored six of its drivers who served in the U.S. military and a WW II era pilot who gained fame during the post-war blockade of Berlin.
C.R. England, which is based in Salt Lake City, added six drivers to its Honored Veterans Fleet and recognized World War II-era veteran Colonel Gail S. Halvorsen USAF (Ret.), who came to be known as “The Berlin Candy Bomber” as the first recipient of the C.R. England Honored Veteran Award. The recognitions took place on Friday, June 17 at the C.R. England corporate offices.
C.R. England has been recognizing drivers with military backgrounds in their Honored Veterans Fleet since 2014. The newest members include:
- Mark Evans, 23-year Air Force Veteran
- Leland Boyles, 10-year Army Veteran
- Bryan Walk, eight-year Navy Veteran
- Dennis Hallowell, seven-year Marine Corps and Army Veteran
- Timothy Williams, four-year Navy Veteran
- Robert St. John, four-year Marine Corps Veteran
Following the recognition of the new members of the Honored Veterans Fleet, C. R England Chairman Dan England presented Colonel Halvorsen with the first C.R. England Honored Veteran Award. England said the award will be presented to future current or past members of the U.S. military recognizing extraordinary service to the country.
After WWII, Halvorsen flew in the Berlin Airlift. During the 15-month airlift (Operation Vittles), American and British pilots delivered more than two million tons of supplies to the city, which had been blockaded by the Soviet Union.
The blockade of Berlin began in June 1948 and ended in May 1949. Flights continued until September 30, 1949 to build up reserves.
It was Halvorsen’s decision to airdrop candy to children (Operation Little Vittles) that clinched an ideological battle and earned him the lasting affection of a free West Berlin.
Much of the candy dropped was provided by The Hershey Company. Katie Freisen, senior director, Global Distribution and Transportation represented The Hershey Company and presented Col. Halvorsen, the honored drivers and those in attendance with Hershey candy bars. Hershey was a significant contributor of candy airdropped by the Candy Bomber.