Woody saying goodbye to half century of service

052718 Woody retires

Carl Woody


Anna Goodwin McCarty

Sunday, May 27, 2018

The U.S. Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center is losing a dedicated and appreciative employee this week.

Carl E. Woody will retire the end of this month with more than half a century of military service and government civil service.

“I just enjoyed it,” said Woody on his 50 years and 10 months of service, including the last 28 years working for the Coast Guard.

Woody, 71, was inspired to pursue a career in the military after being pinned cadet captain in his high school JROTC program by Pres. Harry S. Truman in Independence, Mo., also the former president’s hometown.

“I wanted a career in the army,” said Woody.

Woody said he was working full-time and going to college when he decided to enlist in the army during the Vietnam War. Woody quit school and his job and gave his car to his twin brother.

Woody served in the 6th Battalion, 31st Infantry, 9th Infantry Division. He completed a 15-month tour of duty in Vietnam.

“I would do it again,” said Woody. “My father was in World War II.”

Woody said his father instilled in him the value of respect.

“Give people respect,” said Woody.

Recalling his many years of service, Woody said, “I never had a bad assignment.”

“I met my wife when I was a second lieutenant,” said Woody. “I went home and told my mom that’s the girl I am going to marry.”

After three dates in two years when he was able to come home for visits, Woody married his wife, Sue Ann. The couple has been married for 49 years. During his service, Woody said they moved 14 times. And after 20 years in the Army, Woody retired as a major.

Woody was briefly retired for nine months before commencing a career as a civil service employee for the government in August 1987 as chief of the Mobilization Branch for DCSOPS of the 1st U.S. Army FORSCOM in Fort Meade, Md.

In 1990, he moved to Elizabeth City and began working at the United States Coast Guard Aircraft Repair and Supply Center, now known as the United States Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center.

Woody has held different positions including: equipment specialist, supervisor for the Engineering Support Branch, Deputy of the Engineering and Industrial Support Division, Deputy of the Long Range Surveillance Product Line Division for HC-130s.

Woody ends his career as the Deputy for the Medium Range Recovery Product Line for the MH-60Ts.

“The Coast Guard is really a family,” said Woody. “It’s a teamwork effort. That’s what makes it work.”

“We have never lost an aircraft because of what we have done,” said Woody. “Our successes have been because of our people. There is no room for error.”

“Coast Guard flight crews go out in the most adverse weather, but they never have to worry about their aircraft,” said Woody.

His wife Sue Ann retired with 31 years of government service in September 2008. The couple moved to Manteo in 2008, and he commuted to Elizabeth City.

Woody credits his longevity in his career to truly enjoying his profession.

“If you can’t enjoy what you are doing, change it.”

Woody is looking forward to a retirement celebration and spending time with his wife, their children Carl Woody II, Maryann Colborn and Sueann Myers, their seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren and his friends. Woody’s plans for the future include attending his granddaughter’s high school graduation, traveling and fishing.