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Veterans | November 8, 2018 | By Denee Coleman

Honoring Our Veterans: Stories of Service

Carlton Senior Living is thankful to our many veterans for their dedication and service to our country and we’re proud to share their stories with you in honor of Veterans Day.


Wayne Springsteen – Army Air Corp, Air Force Active Reserve

Springsteen enlisted in the Army Air Corp in Boise, Idaho. He completed training in the Aviation Cadet Program and qualified for bomber pilot, fighter pilot, navigator and bombardier. During his years in the Army, his duties included working on the flight line with B-25’s and B-17’s. He also cleaned and rebuilt Browning 50 Caliber machine guns for the B-17. After the war, he joined the Air Force Active Reserve in Richland, Washington. He attained the rank of technical sergeant and served as an air traffic control supervisor. He was discharged from the active reserve in July 1960. He received the World War II Victory Medal and is a lifetime member of the American Legion. Read more about this Carlton Senior Living Fremont resident and his Veteran of the Year award: Resident Spotlight – Wayne Springsteen


Jim Sander – US Navy


After graduating from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy – USMMA, he served in the U.S. Merchant Marines during WWII in both the Atlantic and Pacific war zones helping deliver critically needed transportation fuels to Navy warships and bases. He also served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean conflict. Today we salute veteran Jim Sander, Carlton Senior Living Downtown Pleasant Hill resident, for his service and dedication to our country.



Jim Costa – US Navy


When Jim graduated from Marina High School the Vietnam War was raging and so he was obligated to register for the draft. Having received a draft number of sixty-six, he took his future into his own hands and enlisted in the Navy in hopes of seeing the world. Instead, he found himself stationed at the Naval Air Station in Kingsville, Texas working as a jet mechanic. Lucky for him, one of the perks of the job was flying in the two-seater TA-4J training jets and also flying in the cargo plans of the Blue Angels.

His end of service with the Navy in 1973 marked the beginning of Jim’s “hippie years” which he fully embraced by growing out his hair while striving to attain enlightenment. Nowadays Jim jumps at the opportunity to dress up for the many special occasions at Carlton Senior Living Pleasant Hill which included a reappearance of his “hippie” persona. Read more about Jim and his interesting journey of reinvention: Resident Spotlight – Jim Costa

Bill Larkins – US Army Air Force


William “Bill” Larkins has been photographing aircraft for over 75 years and is the founder of the American Aviation Historical Society. He is also the author or co-author of nine books on the subject of aviation history and his unique collection of photos can be found on numerous websites. Bill continues to assemble information that will allow for the complete and correct identification of the aircraft in the photos he has taken and collected and is a featured photography of the East Bay Hills Project.

Coincidentally, it was Bill’s interest in aviation led to his exploration of aircraft photography. He earned his pilot’s license and served in the U.S. Army Air Forces for three years during World War II and for another three years with the California Air National Guard. Read more about Bill’s amazing aeronautical career: Resident Spotlight – Bill Larkins

John Connelly – US Army CIC


Soon after John completed his first year of college, he enlisted in the military. John served in the Army for three years as a special agent for the Counterintelligence Corps (Army CIC). He was first deployed to Fort Jackson, South Carolina in order to complete 16 weeks of basic military training. He was later deployed to Fort Holabird, Maryland, training as a special agent for the Counterintelligence Corps. He was last stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina and it is there that he successfully completed 32 air drops.

When John completed his three years in the military, he moved back to Sacramento, California and attended Sacramento State College to earn his Bachelor’s Degree emphasizing in history. Once he had completed his college degree, he was employed by the State of California as a Chief Administrator Officer, during this time he was also known as “Bob” due to his middle name, Robert. Throughout John’s 30 year career with the government, he held notable positions working in the Assembly Rules Committee and the Joint Legislative Committee. In 2012, John earned his Master’s Degree from Sacramento State University studying American and European history. John spent 30 years with the California Legislature, rising to the position of Chief Administrative Officer of the Assembly Rules Committee where he was responsible for computer, personnel, space management, utilities and policy committee programs. Read more about this Carlton Senior Living Sacramento resident and his incredible legislative career: Resident Spotlight – John Connelly

Barbara Dunn – US Coast Guard


Barb served in the Coast Guard for 27 months and held the rank and title of SK 3rd Class. During her military service, she roller skated five nights a week with another Coast Guard SPAR and learned to Jitterbug and Waltz.

Read a news article about Barbara: Davis vets are thanked and honored

Although she has enjoyed it all–from traveling in the USA, to her military service, to her time spent engaging in musical talents–Barb feels that raising her three children has been her favorite life experience. Read more about Barb and her dedication to missionary work: Resident Spotlight – Barbara Dunn

Jim Loveless – US Army

Sergeant Jim Loveless served US Army for six years. In the first few years after WWII, he served in Asia/Japan under General Douglas MacArthur and for his last few years of service, he as on active duty during the war against Korea. Fortunately, the US won the war and Jim came home. He felt grateful to be able to make it back home safely. One of his best friends didn’t make it back like he did…
one of his favorite songs being “Danny Boy,” a song that Jim and his family would sing on family trips. Read more about this Carlton Senior Living Downtown Pleasant Hill resident and his unwavering strength: Celebrating Fatherhood: Heartfelt Tributes to Three Special Dads


Read more about Carlton Senior Living‘s many honored veterans.