Paul Morris Albright was born in Alburtis, Pennsylvania, on 26 March 1894, son of George Samuel Mosser and Sally (Blitz) Albright, and was raised in Williamsport where he received his preliminary education. He attended the Medico Chirurgical College and the University of Pennsylvania, at Philadelphia, and was graduated with a degree in medicine from the latter in 1917. He was appointed Assistant Surgeon with the rank of Lieutenant (jg), US Naval Reserve Force, on 10 April 1917, and was transferred to the Medical Corps of the regular Navy in that rank on 8 September 1917. During World War I, he received temporary promotion to Lieutenant 1 February 1918, and was commissioned in that rank, 6 June 1920, and subsequently advanced in rank, attaining that of Rear Admiral, to date from 15 July 1942. On 1 May 1953 he was transferred to the Retired List of the US Navy, and was promoted to the rank of Vice Admiral on the basis of combat award.
Appointed Assistant Surgeon in the US Naval Reserve Force on 10 April 1917, four days after the entry of the United States into World War I, he reported on 12 May for duty as a Junior Medical Officer at the US Naval Hospital, Grays Ferry Road, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. From August until November 1917 he had duty in connection with fitting out USS Oneida at Tebo's Yacht Basin, Brooklyn, New York. In December of that year he joined USS Michigan which operated with the Atlantic Fleet during the last year of the war, and served in that battleship until October 1919.
During a tour of duty at the US Naval Hospital, League Island, Pennsylvania, from November 1919 until May 1923, he completed a post-graduate course in otolaryngology at the University of Pennsylvania. He then joined Destroyer Squadrons, Scouting Fleet, and was assigned as Medical Officer of Division 25 in USS Sharkey, and in September 1923 transferred to USS Bridge Port as Senior Medical Officer. Returning to the United States he served from June 1924 until August 1927 in the US Naval Hospital, New York, New York, and during this assignment completed a graduate course of instruction in ophthalmology at the New York Eye and Ear Hospital.
For two years he served with the First Brigade, US Marines at Port au Prince, Haiti, and in November 1929 reported to the US Naval Hospital, Annapolis, Maryland, where he served until May 1933. He then had post-graduate instruction in endoscopy at the University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Medicine at Philadelphia. Duty from August 1933 until June 1935 in the hospital ship Relief, preceded a four year assignment at the Naval Hospital, New York, New York. In May 1939 he joined the aircraft carrier Ranger as Senior Medical Officer.
Ordered in October 1940 to the Navy Department, Washington, DC, he had charge of the Reserve Section of the Personnel Division in the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, until 19 December 1941. He was then sent to Pearl Harbor, TH, to expedite the care and rehabilitation of the burnt victims of the assault on that base. He continued duty at Pearl Harbor as Executive Officer of the US Naval Hospital there until October 1942 when he returned to the United States. He was Medical Officer in command of the Naval Hospital, Quantico, Virginia, until early 1944. While there he had additional duty as Medical Aide to the Commanding General, Marine Barracks, Quantico.
On 19 January 1944, he became Medical Officer in command of the Naval Hospital, Long Beach, California, where he remained until February 1945. The following month he reported as Senior Medical Officer Assembly 7, on the staff of the Commander Naval Operating Base at Okinawa, with additional duty on the staff of the Island Commander as Senior Medical Officer for Naval Medical Activities.
"For meritorious achievement as Staff Medical Officer and Medical Director of Naval Medical and Dental Facilities on the Staff of Commandant Naval Operating Base, Okinawa, from March 26 to August 1, 1945... " he was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Combat "V." The citation continues in part: "By his able direction of personnel and excellent administrative talent (he) organized and established hospital, dispensaries, malaria units and other units for the control of epidemics, and successfully solved the many problems concerning casualty evacuation, thereby contributing materially to the prosecution of the war against the Japanese Empire..."
In October 1945, following the Japanese Surrender, he was transferred to duty as Inspector of Medical Activities on the staff of the Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Fleet and Pacific Ocean Areas. On 14 March 1946 he was designated Medical Officer in Command, US Naval Hospital, Corona, California. In January 1947 he was designated Assistant Chief of the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery for Planning and Logistics, Navy Department, Washington, DC, and served in that capacity until November 1948, when he reported as District Medical Officer, Eleventh Naval District, San Diego, California. He continued to serve in that capacity until relieved of all active duty pending his retirement, effective 1 May 1953.
In addition to the Bronze Star Medal with Combat "V", Vice Admiral Albright had the World War I Victory Medal, Atlantic Fleet C1asp; the American Defense Service Medal, Fleet Clasp; American Campaign Medal; the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal; World War II Victory Medal; and the Navy Occupation Service Medal, Asia Clasp.
Insatiable in his search for more knowledge about the ills and wounds of fighting men, Vice Admiral Albright had attended four post graduate schools since his graduation from the University of Pennsylvania's Medical School in 1917, and specialized in diseases of the eye, ear, nose, and throat. He was a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, a Fellow of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology, and a member of the American Medical Association. He was the first officer in the Navy to be certified by an American Specialty Board.