Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy William H. Plackett. Download image (JPG, 3.4 MB).
Master Chief William H. Plackett grew up in Illinois, and enlisted in the Navy on October 18, 1956. After graduation from recruit training, he attended radioman "A" school in Norfolk, Virginia.
His first duty station was with the Naval Control of Shipping Office on Bahrain in the Persian Gulf and earned promotion to Petty Officer Third Class. He transferred to the staff of Commander, Amphibious Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, embarked in USS Mount McKinley in August 1959. Following that tour, he went back to the schoolhouse for Radioman "B" school and was assigned to Representative, Commander East Force/Naval Control of Shipping Office. He was there during the Arab-Israeli War. In September 1967, just 11 years after joining the Navy, he was selected as a Chief Petty Officer. Upon completion of a tour aboard Forrestal, which included an extended ten-month deployment in the Mediterranean, he served as an instructor at Radioman "B" school in Bainbridge, Maryland.
Master Chief Plackett was selected for the Associates Degree Completion Program in April 1971 and was advanced to Senior Chief while attending classes at Pensacola Junior College. He graduated with honors in December 1972 and was awarded an academic scholarship at the University of West Florida. He graduated Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor of science degree in vocational education one year later.
Following a second tour on Forrestal and his selection as Master Chief, he assumed duties as Director of Communications School, Fleet Training Center, Norfolk, Virginia. In 1979, he was named Command Master Chief for Commander, Training Command, U.S. Atlantic Headquarters and subsequently was selected as the first Force Master Chief of the Atlantic Fleet Training Command in July 1981.
Master Chief Plackett was selected as the sixth Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy by Admiral James Watkins, Chief of Naval Operations, on July 17, 1985, and assumed his duties on October 4, 1985.
Biography from the Office of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy
Note: MCPON Plackett passed away on March 4, 2016.
Read more about MCPON Plackett in excerpt from Winds of Change: The History of the Office of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, 1967–1992.