Correction to This Article
The obituary for Carl J. Seiberlich that ran April 18 omitted two surviving sons, Eric Seiberlich of Pioneer, Calif., and Curt Seiberlich of Herndon, as well as two additional grandchildren.

Adm. Carl Seiberlich; Commanded Aircraft Carrier

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Carl J. Seiberlich, 84, a retired Navy rear admiral who, as skipper of an aircraft carrier in 1969, picked up astronauts from two Apollo lunar-landing missions after they splashed down as planned in the South Pacific, died March 24 at Reston Hospital Center. He had coronary artery disease.

After Navy service during World War II, Adm. Seiberlich became expert in lighter-than-air craft, receiving in 1952 a coveted Harmon international aviation trophy for "conceiving, developing and testing a pilot technique for use of lighter-than-air machines in towing." His method was used to track submarines by sonar from the air.

Later, he reportedly was the only naval aviator qualified to land blimps, airplanes and helicopters aboard an aircraft carrier.

During the Cuban Missile Crisis, he had a prominent role in surveillance, reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare.

Adm. Seiberlich took command of the aircraft carrier Hornet in 1969 and oversaw the retrieval of Apollo 11 that July and Apollo 12 that November.

His final active-duty assignment, in 1980, was that of deputy chief of naval personnel and commander of the Naval Military Personnel Command. His military decorations included six awards of the Legion of Merit and the Air Medal.

Carl Joseph Seiberlich was a native of Jenkintown, Pa., and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. He received a master's degree in business administration from Penn's Wharton School.

In 1943, he graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y.

After his military retirement, Adm. Seiberlich, a Haymarket resident, worked for defense contractors and was named director of military programs for American President Lines, the global container transportation company.

He also worked with the International Standards Organization to improve security in freight transportation to prevent acts of terrorism.

Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Trudy G. Seiberlich of Haymarket; a daughter, Heidi Seiberlich of Luray; a sister; and two grandchildren.

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