Chief Warrant Officer 5 Phillip M. Brashear is the son of Junetta and Carl Brashear, the late Master Chief diver who inspired the Hollywood movie ‘Men of Honor.’ Phillip’s father had an incredible journey of becoming the first African-American to join the U.S. Navy. Phillip has worked in the Army as a helicopter pilot. As a Master Army Aviator, CWO5 Brashear has flown over 2,600 hours in U.S. Army Helicopters.
Please keep reading to find out more about the incredible journey of Phillip Brashear and his military career.
Phillip M. Brashear Early Life
Phillip was born in Honolulu, HI, on 3 July 1962 to Carl and Junetta Brashear. He graduated in 1980 from I.C. Norcom High School in Portsmouth, VA. After graduating, he got a scholarship to wrestle at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA, for one year.
Phillip has three siblings. Shazanta Brashear (1955-1996), DaWayne Brashear (1957), and Patrick S. Brashear (1964).
Phillip M. Brashear Parents
Phillip’s mother was born in Magnolia, Kentucky, on 10 June 1993. She married Carl Brashear in 1952 and divorced in 1978, and they had four children together.
Phillip’s father was born in Tonieville, Kentucky, in 1931. Carl Brashear was a sailor for the U. S. Navy. He earned the position of a master diver in 1970 despite amputating his leg in 1966. The Hollywood film ‘Men of Honor’ was inspired by Carl Brashear’s life as the first African-American to join the U.S. Navy Divers.
Phillip M. Brashear Military Career
Phillip began his military career in September 1981 when he joined the Naval Reserve as a Jet Engine Mechanic and Helicopter Crewman at the Naval Air Station in Norfolk. He became a government employee at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, VA, in July 1983. He later joined the Virginia Army National Guard in Richmond. Upon completing the Initial Rotary Wing Training, he became a Warrant Officer Pilot in June 1991.
In his flying career, Chief Phillip Brashear took part in missions like a 1998 humanitarian expedition with his Army National Guard unit in Bolivia. He was part of the Task Force Eagle after the 9/11 attack in 2001, given the role of a Pilot-in-Command for UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters. He was deployed to Iraq as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom as a Maintenance Test Pilot in November 2005.
In November 2007, Brashear retired from the Army National Guard. He joined the Army Reserve in May 2009, serving as a Rear Detachment Commander for Bravo and Delta Companies. Phillip is currently a DOD civilian of the Defense Logistics Agency in Richmond, VA.
Phillip has earned several awards, including Army Air Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, and NATO Medal.
Phillip M. Brashear Personal Life
Brashear is married to a retiree of the Virginia Department of Social Services. They have four children; three daughters and one son. Their son is a student of Army ROTC at the North Carolina A&T University. Phillip lives with his wife in Sandston, VA.
Phillip M. Brashear has had many opportunities to travel the world and visit different institutions to tell his father’s story. He also shares his incredible story as a helicopter pilot when he represents the Army in various events.