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 ST. LOUIS, July 30 /PRNewswire/ -- McDonnell Douglas Corp. has announced that Gerald A. Johnston, president and chief operating officer, informed the McDonnell Douglas board of directors that he plans to retire at the end of this year.
 In his comments to the board, Johnston, 62, said: "Since returning to McDonnell Douglas in October of last year following a year-long bout with a serious illness, my health has gotten much better, but I find I can no longer consistently give the company the 150 percent that I was used to. I have chosen the end of 1993 because I feel by then we will have delivered on our promised financial rebound, on which so many of us have been working for so long."
 "Although I am personally saddened by Gerry's decision to retire, I certainly understand and support his reasons," said John F. McDonnell, chairman and chief executive officer. "Gerry has devoted 38 years of his life making important contributions to McDonnell Douglas, and for that the board of directors and I are extremely grateful. I have especially appreciated his help during extremely difficult circumstances in the past five years."
 Plans for filling his position have not been announced. "In the coming months the board of directors and I will be determining who Gerry's successor will be. I will be consulting with Gerry and others in the process," McDonnell said. "We have plenty of lead time to conduct an orderly transition."
 Johnston joined McDonnell Douglas in 1956 as an associate engineer in guidance and control for Douglas Aircraft Co.'s fledgling missile and space division. Among the positions he held from 1956 to 1968, when McDonnell Douglas Astronautics Co. was formed, were section chief - flight control electronics for the Skybolt program, branch chief - guidance and control for Nike Zeus, and chief engineer for the Nike X and Spartan programs.
 In 1981 Johnston became the director of engineering for McDonnell Douglas Astronautics, and in 1987 was promoted to vice president and general manager. In 1988 he was named president of McDonnell Douglas Corp., and for five months in 1991 also served as interim president of McDonnell Aircraft Co., the combat aircraft division of McDonnell Douglas. In July 1991 he took on the additional title of chief operating officer.
 Johnston serves on the boards of McDonnell Douglas and of St. Louis University and he is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
 -0- 7/30/93
 /CONTACT: Barbara Anderson of McDonnell Douglas Corp., 314-233-2865/

CO: McDonnell Douglas Corp. ST: Missouri IN: ARO SU: PER

JB-MF -- LA002 -- 7965 07/30/93 17:27 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 30, 1993

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