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Col Gregory Raths

Col Raths is a combat veteran of the US Marine Corps
He is running for United States in
Primary Date:

Combat Veterans For Congress---Embedded Integrity

The Combat Veterans For Congress PAC is endorsing the 85th Combat Veteran For Congress; he is a fiscally conservative candidate who believes in a smaller, leaner federal government, lower taxes, a strong national defense, will work to rein in the out of control spending by the Obama Administration, and will work toward unleashing the private sector to grow once again, and stimulate private sector business investment; he is an independent thinking Republican and will champion Veterans rights and jobs.  Col Gregory G. Raths, USMC (Ret) of Mission Viejo, California is running for the seat in the 45th Congressional District of California that is represented by first term Congresswoman Mimi Walters (R-CA-45).   Greg has been endorsed by the California Republican Assembly Delegates in the 45th Congressional District who were upset with Congresswoman’s Mimi Walters votes for the TPA in Congress, and her very active promotion of it on the various media outlets.  Cong Walters Chief of Staff, Mr. Bowers, just resigned on an indictment of corruption; the voters in Walter’s Congressional District were opposed to the selection of a Washington DC insider, like Bowers, who was recommended by the ruling political class, as her COS, and not someone from the district who would know the high tech issues affecting the businessmen in the district. 

Gregory Raths was born to Viola and John Raths on September 12, 1953 in Phoenix, AZ.  Greg comes from a large family of four brothers and three sisters; Greg’s father was a World War II decorated Combat Attack Pilot in the European Theatre from 1944-1945.   He attended local Catholic schools through high school and excelled in math and science; he became an Eagle Scout. Greg was active in student government leading his freshman and senior classes as their president, and also participated in football and baseball.  Greg graduated from Bourgade Catholic High School in Phoenix, AZ in May 1971.  In September 1973, Greg received an Associate’s Degree in General Studies, from Phoenix College in Phoenix, AZ.  He was then accepted as a business student at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business in May 1975 from ASU.  In August 1955, Col Raths attended the National Defense University at Fort Leslie McNair, Washington, DC and earned a Master’s of Science Degree in National Resource Strategy in June 1996.   In September 2011 Greg was accepted at California State University in Fullerton and obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History with a minor in Political Science in May 2013.   

While at Phoenix College, Greg joined the United States Marine Corps Officer Candidate Program on August 12, 1972 in Phoenix, AZ, going through summer training during his college his summer breaks in July of 1973 and July of 1974 at the US Marine Corps Base, Quantico, VA.   Following graduation from ASU, Greg was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the US Marine Corps on May 24, 1975 and reported to Quantico Marine Corps Base for Officer Basic Training; he completed his training on January 15, 1976.  2ndLT Raths was medically qualified for flight training and reported to Naval Air Station Pensacola, FL for basic flight training in February 1976 and reported for primary flight training in March 1976.  In June 1976, Second Lieutenant Raths reported to Naval Air Station, Meridian, Mississippi for advance jet school; he was promoted to first lieutenant on June 1, 1977 and received his Wings of Gold on June 24, 1977, graduating with honors.  Greg’s father, a World War II Combat Decorated Attack Pilot, had the honor of pinning First Lieutenant Raths’ wings on him.

First Lieutenant Raths’ first assignment as a military pilot was at the Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) in El Toro, California where he joined the Third Marine Aircraft Wing in August of 1977, and was assigned to Marine Aircraft Group 11. He flew the RF-4B Phantom II with Marine Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron 3 and deployed with Carrier Air Wing Five on the aircraft carrier USS Midway (CV-41) for deployment to the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea on February 1979; he returned to CONUS in September 1979.  On August 1, 1980, 1st LT Raths was promoted to Captain; and in November 1980 he departed on his second deployment to the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea; he returned to CONUS in June 1981. On July 1, 1986, Captain Raths was promoted to Major and in that same month he was selected to Command the Marine Corps Recruiting Station in Detroit, Michigan.  He turned a failing recruiting station into a recruiting powerhouse. After his successful command tour he transitioned to the F/A-18 Hornet in 1989 and returned to MAG 11 MCAS El Toro in April 1990 to Command a Marine Headquarters Squadron, and flew the F/A-18 Hornet with VMFA-314, the Black Knights Squadron.

On January 17, 1991 Major Raths deployed as the Combat Operations Center Officer for Marine Aircraft Group 11 based at Sheikh Isa Air Base in Bahrain in support of Operation Desert Storm. He flew 67 combat missions in the F/A-18D during the conflict, and was awarded the Air Medal (with bronze star and Combat “V”), the Strike Air Medal (3 awards) the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal (with Combat “V”), the Navy/Marine Corps Medal and various Campaign and Service Medals.  Maj Raths returned to CONUS on May 17, 1991 and was assigned as Executive Officer of VMFA-314.  Maj Raths was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel on May 1, 1992, and in April 1993, Lt Col Raths was selected to command his squadron. Lt Col Raths again returned to the Arabian Sea aboard USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on July 24, 1993 as Commanding Officer of Marine Fighter/Attack Squadron 314 (F/A-18s) in support of Operation Southern Watch and flew combat missions over Iraq enforcing the Southern No-fly Zone. On October 8, 1993 Lt Col Raths’ Marine Fighter/Attack Squadron 314 flew in support of Operation Continue Hope off the shore of Somalia providing close air support for Task Force Ranger of Special Operations Forces after two Black Hawk helicopters were shot down and a pilot was taken prisoner.  LtCol Raths had accumulated over 400 carrier landings on his aircraft carrier deployments.  During his cruise on the Lincoln, he was awarded the Strike Medal (6th award), the Meritorious Service Medal, and various Campaign and Service Medals; he returned to CONUS on November 2. 1993.

In July1995, Lieutenant Colonel Raths reported to the National Defense University in Washington, D.C.; he was awarded a Master of Science Degree in National Resource Strategy upon graduation in June 1996.  Following graduation, in June 1996, he was nominated and selected for the position of Assistant Chief of Staff of the White House Military Office.  This prestigious position at the highest level of government enabled, Lt Col Raths, to view our government at the executive level. The military office ensures our Commander-in-Chief has the necessary military support to discharge his duties as President of the United States. Lt Col Raths traveled with the president aboard Air Force One on several national and international trips overseeing the president’s military support. On January 1, 1999, Lt Col Raths was promoted to Colonel and was transferred in February 1999.  In June 1999, Colonel Raths assumed command of Marine Aircraft Group 46, a composite air group of both fixed wing and helicopters. He would become proficient in six different Marine Corps aircraft.  

In July 2002, Colonel Raths was transferred to Headquarters, Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in New Orleans, Louisiana and was assigned as Chief of Staff to the Commanding General. At one point during his tour in New Orleans, when the Commanding General was assigned to a forward assignment in the Middle East, Colonel Raths took command of the Air Wing, becoming the first USMC Colonel in 50 years to command a Marine Aircraft Wing.  Col Raths was Honorably Discharged from the US Marine Corps on November 30, 2004; he is the recipient of the Defense Superior Medal, 2 Legion of Merit Medals, 3 Meritorious Service Medals, the Air Medal (with Bronze Star and Combat “V”), the Strike Air Medal (6th Award), 3 Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medals (one with Combat “V”), Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and numerous Service and Campaign Medals.

After Col Raths retired from the US Marine Corps on November 30, 2004; he returned to Mission Viejo, CA.   Greg flew for Jet Blue Airline in Long Beach, CA as a commercial pilot for three years from 2004 to 2007, before being recruited in 2008 to become President of Go Automotive, a local parts distribution firm in Anaheim, CA; when the firm was sold in 2011, Greg became an author, and publisher his first book, “9 Lives of a fighter Pilot” in 2013 and is working on his second book ”Havoc Going Down”.  Greg is a Councilman in the city of Mission Viejo, the 2nd largest city in the 45 the Congressional District. 

Greg has been endorsed by Mayor Barbara Kogerman and Councilman Andrew Blount of Laguna Hills, Councilman Derek Reeves of San Juan Capistrano, Mayor Dave Leckness of Mission Viejo, and the Combat Veterans For Congress PAC.  Greg is a member of the NRA, the Navy League, VFW, Marine Corps Aviation Association, Association of Naval Aviation, Rotary Club of Mission Viejo, the Elks Lodge of Mission Viejo, the Knights of Columbus, the Knights Templar, and the American Legion.  
Greg has been married for 34 years to the former Lucille Fanelli of Jeanette, Pennsylvania who is Professor in the Education Department at the University of California, Irvine.  They are proud parents of three children, Maj Michael Raths, USMCR a jet aviator age 39, and twin daughters Kristen and Kathryn age 32 who both have Masters Degrees and are educators teaching in the Irvine Unified School District in Irvine, California.  The Raths are active members of St Kilian Catholic Church in Mission Viejo, CA.  


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