77°

Topics

George Clinton
James D. Watkins dies at 85; retired admiral led AIDS, ocean panels
James D. Watkins dies at 85; retired admiral led AIDS, ocean panels

Navy Adm. James D. Watkins was considered "an unlikely hero" after he was called out of retirement in 1987 to accomplish what many considered a near-impossible task — taking over the leadership of an embattled and divided presidential commission on AIDS. A former chief of naval operations, Watkins was a deeply religious Roman Catholic father of six who had once called the military's ban on homosexuals "a sound policy." Yet he was also known as an independent and analytical thinker. Asked by the Reagan administration to formulate a national strategy to deal with the AIDS epidemic, the commission united under Watkins' new leadership, releasing a 1988...

Loading