Retired Sep. 10, 1974.
Brigadier General S. Elliott Lifton is command surgeon for Air Force Systems Command with headquarters at Andrews Air Force Base, Md.
General Lifton was born in 1920, at Hartford, Conn. He graduated from Dartmouth College, summa cum laude, with a bachelor of arts degree in 1941, and attended Dartmouth Medical School (which was then a two-year medical school). He received his doctor of medicine degree from the New York University School of Medicine in 1943. He interned at Queens General Hospital, Jamaica, Long Island, and was a resident in surgery at Montefiore General Hospital, New York City.
He received his Reserve commission as a second lieutenant in June 1942 and entered active military service as a medical officer in July 1945 at Carlisle Barracks, Pa. He graduated from the School of Aviation Medicine at Randolph Field, Texas, in February 1946.
From May 1946 to April 1949, General Lifton was in Japan at Tachikawa Air Base where he served as commander of the 801st Medical Air Evacuation Squadron and became chief of surgery for the 376th Station Hospital. He next was assigned to the 3204th Medical Group, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., as assistant chief of surgical services and flight surgeon.
During the spring of 1951, General Lifton was surgeon for the Air Task Group in Operation Greenhouse, a nuclear weapons test at Eniwetok Atoll, Marshall Islands. In 1952 he was the surgeon for Joint Task Force in Operation Ivy, the first hydrogen bomb test, also at Eniwetok.
General Lifton was the biological, chemical and nuclear defense officer for the surgeon general, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, from January 1953 to July 1956. He attended a radiobiology course and in February 1957 went to Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., where he was assigned to the Air Force Special Weapons Center and served as chief of the Biophysics Division, performing research on nuclear effects.
From April 1963 to July 1966 General Lifton was at Headquarters Air Force Systems Command, Andrews Air Force Base, Md., where as director of bioastronautics, he directed Air Force medical space research for the deputy chief of staff, bioastronautics and medicine.
He became surgeon of the U.S. Logistics Group with headquarters in Ankara, Turkey, in July 1966. He was responsible for providing medical support to organizations of the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, State Department and other governmental agencies. This support extended from Greece and Crete in the west to Pakistan in the east.
General Lifton returned to Headquarters Air Force Systems Command in July 1968 as deputy chief of staff for bioastronautics and medicine. He was transferred in July 1970 to Headquarters Air Force Logistics Command at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, and served as command surgeon. In April 1972 General Lifton again was assigned to Air Force Systems Command and assumed duties as command surgeon.
He is rated a chief flight surgeon. His military decorations and awards include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal, and the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon.
He was promoted to the temporary grade of brigadier general effective March 1, 1972, with date of rank Feb. 27, 1972.