Retired Jan. 1, 1979. Died April 3, 2000.
Brigadier General Claire Marie Garrecht is the chief, Air Force Nurse Corps, Office of the Surgeon General, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
General Garrecht was born in Pittsburgh, Pa. She graduated from St Justin's High School; received her nursing diploma from St Joseph's Hospital School of Nursing, Pittsburgh, Pa.; her bachelor of science degree in nursing education and master's degree in education from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh.
During World War II, in June 1944, General Garrecht was given a direct commission in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps and was assigned briefly to Fort George G. Meade, Md. In September 1944 she joined the 164th General Hospital enroute to France, then transferred to the 227th General Hospital in 1945 and remained with that unit until her separation from the Army in 1946.
General Garrecht joined the Air Force in March 1951 and was assigned to the USAF Hospital, Sampson Air Force Base, N.Y., as a charge nurse. In September 1952 she went to England with the 3d Hospital Group. From September 1954 to March 1957 she was assigned as a charge nurse at the USAF Hospital, Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas. She then returned to England to serve as chief nurse at the 81st Tactical Hospital, Royal Air Force Station Bentwaters.
From May to July 1959, General Garrecht attended the Flight Nurse Course at the USAF Medical Service School, Gunter Air Force Base, Ala., and upon completion she was retained as a member of the faculty. In May 1963 she was reassigned to the USAF Hospital, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, as chief, Surgical Nursing Service. From March 1965 to May 1968 she served as chief nurse, 10th Aeromedical Evacuation Group, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. During this period, she was responsible for the in-flight care of all patients transferred from Southeast Asia to the continental United States.
After a brief assignment as chief nurse, USAF Hospital, Patrick Air Force Base, Fla., she became chief, Aerospace Nursing Branch at the School of Aerospace Medicine, Brooks Air Force Base, Texas, where she had responsibility for the training of all flight nurses and aeromedical evacuation technicians, as well as the residents in aerospace nursing.
In July 1972 she became the command nurse for Tactical Air Command at Langley Air Force Base, Va., where she was responsible to the command surgeon for the nursing service provided in all medical facilities throughout the command. In May 1974 she became chief, Air Force Nurse Corps.
She is a member of the American Nurses' Association, the National League for Nursing, the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States, and is an associate fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association.
Her military decorations and awards include the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon with three oak leaf clusters. General Garrecht wears the Senior Flight Nurse wings.
General Garrecht claims Pittsburgh, Pa., as home.
She was promoted to the grade of brigadier general effective Sept. 1, 1974, with date of rank Aug. 27, 1974.