Retired Army Col. George L. Eckert, 60, who helped analyze aerial photographs of Soviet missile activity in Cuba during the period of the Cuban missile crisis in 1962, died Saturday of leukemia at Walter Reed Army Medical Center .
Col. Eckert was assigned to the National Photographic Interpretation Center during the missile crisis, at the end of which the Soviets removed missiles from Cuba. The center received the Army Meritorious Unit Commendation for its intelligence work from May to December 1962.
Col. Eckert was born in Minneapolis. He attended the University of Minnesota and then transferred to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, from where he graduated in 1942. He served in the Pacific during World War II and saw action in the landings at Saipan, the Philippines and Okinawa.
Following the war, he was assigned to the U.S. military mission in Greece during the Greek civil war. He spoke Greek and served two additional tours in that country during the course of his career. He also served in Iran and Alaska.
Col. Eckert was a graduate of the Army War College, the Army Language School and the Greek Army War College. In 1966, he earned a master's degree in international relations at George Washington University. He retired from the Army in 1972 and was an employe of the Gateway International Co. at the time of his death.
Col. Eckert's decorations include the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal and the Greek War Cross, Third Class.
Survivors include his wife, June, a daughter Carol Van Ginhoven and a son, Roger, all of the home in Arlington, and a brother, Philip F. Eckert, of Chevy Chase.
The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the American Cancer society.