Sgt. 1st Class John Halmond
810th Engineer Aviation Battalion
World War II Veteran: 1941–1962
Sergeant First Class--US Army
Locations of Service
Southwest Pacific, Asiatic Pacific and Coral Sea
Good Conduct, German Occupation Medal and Asiatic and Pacific Award
John Halmond was born in Aiken, South Carolina, September 11, 1919. In March of 1941, John was drafted into the US Army Air Corps, where he served in the 810th Engineer Aviation Battalion (EAB). The 810th EAB received just six months of training with heavy equipment, building roads and bridges at MacDill Field in Florida, before it was deployed overseas. The 810th and the 811th were the first African-American aviation engineer units deployed from the United States.
When John’s unit arrived in Plaine Des Gaiacs in the South Pacific, they began to work in round-the-clock shifts to clear trees, reinforce bridges and ford streams. Miraculously, John’s unit managed to clear a path and build a runway, in time for the Battle of the Coral Sea.
In 1962, after his final tour of duty, John moved to the District of Columbia. He began working for the federal government, where he continued to serve until his retirement.
For his dedicated service during World War II: John Halmond, a proud World War II veteran and District of Columbia resident, the District of Columbia proudly salutes you!.