Today’s Flashback features the 1953 graduating class of the Keesler Air Force Ground Radar School.
Centered on the second row is Gilbert L. “Gil” Murray (1929-2015), whose wife Sonia submitted this photo. Murray, a native of Monroe, Louisiana, served 20 years in the military, first in the Navy and then in the Air Force. During his Air Force years, he was stationed in North Africa, England (where he met his wife), and Germany. When Murray retired in 1971, he and his wife chose to stay in Biloxi.
Some of members of the graduating class signed the back of Murray’s photo with good wishes and good luck: Larry white, Richard McClusky, Donna Walker, George E. Lowe, Joe Compenton, Bonita Bueno, William J. Spenser, Bobby Anderson, Gil Moorman, Julia Washington, Vicki C. Falden, Marion D. Lemmecili(?), Angelo Jiraceesa(?). Some of the handwriting is hard to decipher.
Sonia Murray’s reason for submitting this picture to Flashback was that many of those pictured may have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, and she hopes that some may see the photo and feel good about it.
On a personal note, I will always remember the kindness of Gil Murray, who volunteered his time to fix and kept-running an old manually operated microfilm reader that I had in the local history and genealogy department of the Biloxi Library, when I was in charge of the collection.
Murella H. Powell, a local historian, writes the weekly Flashback column. Do you have a local photograph to submit to Flashback? It can be of any subject or event in the Coast's distant or recent past. Please send a description with your name, address and phone number to Flashback, Sun Herald, P.O. Box 4567, Biloxi MS39535; call 896-2424; or email email@example.com.