CAPT George Paul McGinnis, USN (Ret), was born on May 11, 1919 in Iowa Park, Texas. He joined the Naval Reserve in 1941 and was called up shortly after Pearl Harbor.
CAPT McGinnis was a graduate of the Naval War College and did Post Graduate work at Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of West Florida. Throughout his life he was interested in electronics. He began building radio equipment at age 10 and was a licensed amateur radio operator from age 12, call sign K4CRQ. While still in his teens, George designed a radio control system for a model boat and wrote articles about it for technical publications. This system was used by the navy in the design of target drone aircraft during WWII.
Military duties included the following:
1942 – 11th Naval District, San Diego and M.I.T. Radar School
1942-1944 OINC Radio Station NKM, Recife, Brazil
1944-1945 OP-20-GX, Headquarters
1945-1946 Harvard University Navy PG school
1946-1947 Secretary of the Navy
1947-1949 Head Quarter Naval Security Group
1949-1950 Armed Forces Security Agency, Arlington Virginia
1950-1952 CO, NSGA Dupont Station, South Carolina
1952-1954 Operations Officer, Kami Seya (Several field activities)
1956-1957 Naval War College
1957-1959 CO, Okinawa
1962-1964 CO, Turkey
1969-1971 CO, NCTC Corry Station (One field station)
1971-1973 XO, National Cryptologic School, NSA.
July, 1973 7th CO NTTC Pensacola
Military decorations and awards include: American Campaign Medal; World War II Victory Medal; Korean Service Medal; United Nations Service Medal; National Defense Service Medal; Naval Unit Commendation Medal (2); Navy Commendation Medal (2); Legion of Merit (2).
After military retirement in 1972, CAPT McGinnis built his home in Gulf Breeze, FL and volunteered many years in community service. He was on the Board of Directors of the Military YMCA, the United Way, Retired Senior Volunteer Program and the Pensacola Navy League. He was a certified Florida County Court Mediator and mediated cases in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties for more than fifteen years. George worked with the Naval Cryptologic Veterans Association and authored their History Book. He was instrumental in moving the Naval Cryptologic Museum from Washington, DC, to the Center for Cryptology, Corry Station, and worked at the Command Display of cryptology for several years.
CAPT McGinnis’ wife, Elvia Parish McGinnis, died in 1979. He is survived by his three children, Michael McGinnis of Lusby, MD, Patrick McGinnis and his wife, Frances of Walnut Creek, CA and his daughter, Commander Debra S. DelVecchio, USN, (Ret.), her husband, Michael, and their twins, Anthony and Carmen of Hamilton, VA. He pays special tribute to his companion of many years, Susan T. Metzger, whose intelligence, beauty, wit and perseverance served the two of them well through many trials and tribulations over the past 15 years. In his own words: “A very happy life to all of you. Susan, this time I won’t be back.”