Last night we took a left out of our driveway and headed less
than a 1/2 mile to the Alvarez's annual crab feast. What we didn't
know was it was a surprise reunion of 17 POW's that were
held with Everett during the Vietnam war. They came from
all parts of the US and it was very interesting to hear
some of their stories. I posted a bio of Everett which you may
find interesting below.Alvarez is the grandson of immigrants from Mexico. He went to Santa Clara University on an academic scholarship. He joined the United States Navy in 1960 and was selected for pilot training. On August 5, 1964, during Operation Pierce Arrow, LTJG. Alvarez's plane was shot down in the immediate aftermath of what is known as the Gulf of Tonkin Incident. Alvarez endured eight years and seven months of brutal captivity by the North Vietnamese at the Hỏa Lò Prison (sarcastically known as the "Hanoi Hilton" by fellow POWs), in which he was repeatedly beaten and tortured. Alvarez was especially esteemed by his fellow prisoners because he was for almost a year the only aviator prisoner of war.
Back in America
He is the recipient of the Silver Star, two Legions of Merit, two Bronze Stars, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and two Purple Heart Medals. In 2012 he received the Lone Sailor Award.
Alvarez has co-authored two books, writing of his prisoner of war experiences in Chained Eagle and Code Of Conduct. Everett Alvarez High School in his native Salinas, California is named after him. There is also a park named in his honor in Santa Clara, California and a post office named in his honor inMontgomery County, Maryland.
A subdivision at Naval Air Station Lemoore, California was named after Alvarez during his internment.
In 2012, the Mobile, Alabama Chapter of the Association of Naval Services Officers (ANSO) was named after Alvarez.
The Lone Sailor Award was given to Alvarez in Washington, D.C. on September 18, 2012. The Lone Sailor Award is given to Sea Service veterans who have excelled with distinction in their respective civilian careers while exemplifying the Navy's core values of Honor, Courage and Commitment.
Alvarez retired from the Navy with the rank of Commander in 1980. He later earned a Master's Degree in Operations and Research Analysis and a Juris Doctor degree and in April 1981, he was appointed by President Ronald Reagan to the post of Deputy Director of the Peace Corps. In July 1982, President Reagan nominated and the Senate confirmed him as Deputy Administrator of the Veterans Administration (VA). After six years with the Veterans Administration he was appointed by President Reagan in 1988 to the Board of Regents of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU) in Bethesda, Maryland. Alvarez served on that Board for almost 21 years, including serving as Chairman of the Board twice. Alvarez has served on the President’s Task Force to improve Health Care Delivery for our Nation’s Veterans and recently chaired the VA’s CARES Commission (Capital Asset Realignment and Enhancement Study Commission).
Alvarez is a lifetime member of the Board of Fellows of the University of Santa Clara. He served on the Board of Directors of the International Graduate University of Democracy in Washington DC. He served on the College of William & Mary Washington DC Council. He has served on the White House Board of Fellows Selection Committee and on the Board of Directors of the Armed Services YMCA of the USA. He is on the Library of Congress Veterans History ProjectFive Star Council Advisory Committee. In 2004, Alvarez founded Alvarez & Associates, an IT consulting firm in Washington, D.C. which sells IT services to the U.S. government. In March 2014, Alvarez was appointed to the Vietnam War Commemoration Advisory Council by the Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel.
Alvarez is married and has two children.