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Col. Gail S. Halvorsen, affectionately known as the “Candy Bomber.”

Col. Gail S. Halvorsen, affectionately known as the “Candy Bomber.”

John Hollenhorst, KSL

Bill passed to rename Provo Veterans Center after ‘Candy Bomber’

SHARE Bill passed to rename Provo Veterans Center after ‘Candy Bomber’
SHARE Bill passed to rename Provo Veterans Center after ‘Candy Bomber’

A bill to rename the Provo Veterans Center to honor Col. Gail S. Halvorsen, affectionately known as the "Candy Bomber," has unanimously passed the Senate.

The bill, sponsored by Utah Sens. Mike Lee and Mitt Romney, calls for the center's name to be changed to the Colonel Gail S. Halvorsen Veteran Center. It was approved by the Senate on Dec. 18 and is now headed to the House of Representatives for a vote.

Halvorsen, who lives in Utah, earned the title of the "Candy Bomber" for dropping candy from his aircraft to impoverished children in Berlin while serving as a pilot during the 1948 Berlin Airlift. Halvorsen has continued to serve others throughout his life with his Halvorsen Aviation Education Foundation.

Lee issued a statement this week praising Halvorsen for his service.

"Halvorsen represents the best of Utah and the best of the U.S. Armed Forces," Lee said. "During a time of historic suffering Halvorsen responded with kindness and caring. It's only fitting that his center designed to care for and support our nation's veterans bears the name of the Candy Bomber."