Robert Irving Carney, Jr. Lt. Col, USA-Ret.

robert carney, jr.  lt. col, usa-ret.
Robert “Bob” Irving Carney, Jr., age 93, of Williamsburg, Virginia, peacefully departed this life the evening of Monday, August 22, 2022. Born on August 13, 1929, in Woodbury, New Jersey, he was the son of the late Delaware State Senator Robert Irving Carney, Sr. and Ida Lyons Carney, née Taylor.

Mr. Carney was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Marie Lou Whiteheart Carney, and his brother, Walter James Carney. He is survived by his children Michael A. Carney (Kathy) of Pittsford, NY, Clay E. Carney (Tracy) of Falls Church, VA, Neal J. Carney (Ann) of Alexandria, VA, R. Scott Carney of Charlotte, NC, and Jeanne M. Carney Moore (William) of Dumfries, VA, and his grandchildren, Shea Carney Marwell (Gabe), Lee Ann Carney, Patrick S. Carney (fiancé Ashlyn), Kyla M. Carney, Katie M. U. Carney, Mary Lou Moore, and Magdalene M. Moore, along with two great-grandchildren and many nieces, nephews, and in-laws.

Mr. Carney graduated from Pierre S. du Pont High School in Wilmington, Delaware in 1947. While attending the University of Delaware in April 1948, he enlisted in the United States Army because, as his mother said, “he always wanted to be a soldier.” After serving in combat during the Korean Conflict, he was accepted for Officer Candidate School. Commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in May 1952, he was assigned to the 303rd Communication Reconnaissance Battalion as an ASA Liaison Officer in charge of a LLVI team with the 2nd Infantry Division in Korea. In December 1952, he was assigned to the 327th Communication Reconnaissance Company in Kyoto, Japan, and remained there until November 1954, serving as Operations Officer, and being promoted to 1st Lieutenant in May 1953.

Beginning in December 1954, Mr. Carney served a three-year tour with the National Security Agency as a Communication Intelligence Officer. There he met Marie Lou Whiteheart from Winston-Salem, North Carolina who worked as an encryption analyst for the National Security Agency. They married on May 26, 1956, at Fort Meade, Maryland.

In October 1957, Mr. Carney entered the Company Officer Course at the United States Army Security Agency (“USASA”) School in Fort Devens, Massachusetts, graduating in June 1958 and being promoted to Captain in August 1958. Assigned to the 4th USASA Field Station in Asmara, Ethiopia from October 1958 to June 1961, he served as Assistant Operations Officer and later Company Commander. In July 1961, he began attending the USASA Officer Career Course at Fort Devens, graduating in June 1962. From September 1962 to June 1963, he attended the University of Maryland under the “bootstrap” program earning a Bachelor of Science with High Honors. He was promoted to Major in October 1963 and continued his education at the University of Maryland Graduate School graduating with a Master of Arts (Political Science – International Relations) in 1968.

After completing his undergraduate degree, Mr. Carney was assigned to Vint Hill Farms Station in Warrenton, Virginia, as Operations Officer. In June 1964, he was assigned to the Joint Sobe Processing Center in Okinawa, as a Communications Intelligence Officer, serving until December 1966.

Upon returning to the United States in late 1966, Mr. Carney and his family settled in Springfield, Virginia where they lived until 1987. He was assigned to the Department of the Army, Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff of Intelligence, as a cryptologic staff officer, and he was promoted to Lt. Colonel in June 1967. After his three-year tour on the Army General Staff as Chief of the Cryptologic Division, he was assigned Commanding Officer of TUSLOG DET-4 in Sinop, Turkey from January 1970 to January 1971. He served as Assistant Chief of Staff at the Headquarters of the USASA whereupon he assumed command of the U. S. Army Support Facility at Arlington Hall Station, Virginia in July 1972.

After the death of his wife in October 1975, Mr. Carney retired from the United States Army on January 1, 1976, to better care for his young children. During his time of military service, he was awarded the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the Republic of Korea War Service Medal, and other citations and decorations. In addition to his fixed deployments, throughout his Army career he traveled extensively while supporting U.S. intelligence installations around the world and developed a deep appreciation for many different cultures.

After retiring from the Army, Mr. Carney served as a secondary school teacher in the Mathematics Department at Lake Braddock Secondary School in Burke, Virginia from 1978 until his retirement in 1989.

In 1990, Mr. Carney moved to Kingsmill on the James, a gated community near historic Colonial Williamsburg and The College of William and Mary. He was an original owner in the Moody’s Run section of Kingsmill where he enjoyed his view of the River Course 11th Fairway from his screened porch. He was a regular at the Kingsmill Sports Club Fitness Center and at various restaurants and pancake houses in town accompanied by his good friend, Vern Iden. In 1998, he met Armen Hartman who was his constant companion until her death in January 2021.

Bob Carney was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather and loved spending time with his family. He also enjoyed cruise ship travel, researching genealogy, listening to Miles Davis and John Coltrane, reading Tom Clancy novels, and watching FOX News. His charming, larger-than-life personality entertained friends and easily befriended strangers. His military career shaped his personality, and he faced difficult situations with resolve and without complaint. His resilience, humor, and great love will be missed by all.

A funeral and burial service will be held at Arlington National Cemetery at a future date.

The family would like to thank the staff at Williamsburg Landing, particularly Dee Dee McCoy, for the care they provided Mr. Carney during the last sixteen months of his life.

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  1. Your father was a-one-kind person that lived a truly remarkable life I feel lucky I got to know him and your was so proud of all of ya’ll and loved ya’ll so much I hope this comforts ya’ll as ya’ll deal with his loss he will be missed so much but not forgotten Thanks for giving me the honor of caring for him praying extra for ya’ll

  2. I also taught Mathematics at Lake Braddock when Bob was there. Good teach, great American. I remember when he had the shop redo a 1960s Mustang for his daughter, Jenne
    Will Misner.

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