Lieutenant Carl E. Swepston joined the Navy in 1959. His first assignment was Navy Beachmaster-BMU 1 West Pac Detachment. In 1962 Swepston graduated from UDTRA Class 28, and he served in UDT-11, UDT-21, UDT-22, and SEAL Team ONE. He is Explosive Ordnance Disposal Qualified and did four deployments to Vietnam in 1963, 1964, 1966, and 1969.
Swepston served as a point man for a SEAL platoon in Vietnam and made two tours as a Provincial Reconnaissance Unit Advisor-CIA Phoenix program. He worked in the Navy Marine Mammal Program and held the rates/ranks of E-1 through E-7, W-1 through W-4, and 0-1 through 0-3.
Swepston was awarded the Bronze Star with “V” for Valor, two Presidential Unit Citations, two Navy Unit Citations, Combat Action Ribbon, and Vietnam Service Medal with 6+ stars, Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry, Navy Good Conduct medal, and a Combat Action Ribbon. He retired from the Navy in 1979 with an honorable discharge.
Swepston earned his GED in the Navy in addition to his bachelor’s degree in behavioral science from Westminster College and master’s degree in counseling psychology from National University. He became a California licensed marriage and family therapist and was an Assistant Principal/Counselor at Julian High School, a counselor at the Borrego Springs School District, and college adjunct faculty member at Palomar College.