Glen York was born on August 31, 1928, in Enterprise, Oregon. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force on August 11, 1950, and served as an aircraft turret gunner and flexible gunnery instructor before receiving a direct commission in the Air Force on September 11, 1953. Lt York next completed Pilot training and was awarded his pilot wings in October 1954, followed by Guidance Systems Officer training, B-29 Superfortress transition training, and then B-47 Stratojet transition training. His next assignment was as a B-47 pilot with the 359th Bomb Squadron at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona, from March 1956 to November 1957, followed by RB-66 Destroyer transition training and then service as an RB-66 pilot with the 42nd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron at Spangdahlem AB, West Germany, and then at RAF Chelveston, England, from March 1958 to July 1961. Capt York then received an Air Force Institute of Technology assignment to complete his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering at Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma, from September 1961 to January 1964. His next assignment was as a mechanical engineer in the Air Force Plant Representative Office at Hughes Aircraft Company in Culver City, California, from February 1964 to November 1966. During this time he completed Helicopter Pilot Training at Stead AFB, Nevada, in April 1965, and later HH-3E Jolly Green Giant transition training before serving as an HH-3E pilot with Detachment 7, 38th Aerospace Rescue and Recover Squadron (ARRS) at DaNang AB, South Vietnam, from November 1966 to January 1967. He then served as an HH-3E pilot with the 37th ARRS at DaNang AB from January to March 1967, with Detachment 2 of the 37th ARRS at Udorn Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, from March to October 1967, and with Detachment 1 of the 37th ARRS at Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, for the month of October 1967 before returning to the United States. Maj York then returned to Culver City, California, as an engineer with Detachment 36, Headquarters Air Force Contract Management Division, from October 1967 to August 1969. His final assignment was as a CH-3 pilot with the 6593rd Test Squadron (Special) of the 6594th Test Group at Hickam AFB, Hawaii, from August 1969 until his retirement from the Air Force on September 1, 1970. During this last assignment, Maj York flew helicopters on highly classified missions to retrieve film canisters from spy satellites during Project Corona. Glen York died on May 3, 2014, and was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
His Air Force Cross Citation reads:
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Title 10, Section 8742, United States Code, takes pleasure in presenting the Air Force Cross to Major Glen P. York for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an opposing armed force in Southeast Asia as Rescue Crew Commander of an unarmed HH-3E Rescue Helicopter near Nam Dinh, North Vietnam, on 18 July 1967. Despite the knowledge that a preceding rescue force had been damaged and driven away by intensive anti-aircraft fire, Major York unhesitatingly entered an extremely hostile area to rescue a downed United States Navy pilot. In the approach to the pilot's position, one of Major York's escort aircraft was hit and forced to withdraw. Major York deliberately disregarded continuous heavy fire from all directions and hovered over the downed pilot until he was safely hoisted aboard. Through his extraordinary heroism, superb airmanship, and aggressiveness in the face of the enemy, Major York reflected the highest credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.