Carl Luksic was born on June 20, 1921, at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. He enlisted in the Aviation Cadet Program of the U.S. Army Air Forces on March 22, 1942, and was commissioned a 2d Lt and awarded his pilot wings at Luke Field, Arizona, on October 30, 1942. After completing P-47 Thunderbolt training, Lt Luksic was assigned to the 487th Fighter Squadron of the 352nd Fighter Group at Westover Field, Massachusetts, in January 1943. He deployed with the unit to England in July 1943, and transitioned into the P-51 Mustang in April 1944. Between April 10 and May 19, 1944, Lt Luksic was credited with the destruction of 8.5 enemy aircraft in aerial combat, and he also was credited with destroying 7 more enemy aircraft on the ground while strafing enemy airfields. He was shot down over Germany and taken as a Prisoner of War on May 24, 1944, and was held at Stalag Luft III until he escaped in March 1945, making it back to Allied lines on April 18, 1945. Lt Luksic returned to the U.S. in May 1945, and served as an instructor pilot and gunnery instructor at Luke Field, Arizona, from August 1945 to August 1946, and then at Williams Field, Arizona, from August 1946 to October 1948. He attended RAF Gunnery School at Leconfield, England, from October 1948 to February 1949, and then served as a gunnery instructor at Nellis AFB, Nevada, from February 1949 to July 1952. From 1952 to 1959, Maj Luksic served in command of fighter training squadrons in Florida and Texas, and as Operations Officer for fighter training wings in Texas. He served on the staff of Squadron Officer School at Maxwell AFB, Alabama, from August 1959 to June 1961, and then served as commander of the 329th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron at George AFB, California, from June 1961 to February 1963. His next assignment was as an advisor to the South Korean Air Force at Suwon Auxiliary Airfield from February 1963 to June 1964, followed by service as commander of the 4756th Support Squadron at Tyndall AFB, Florida, from June 1964 to June 1966. Col Luksic flew C-130 Hercules transports with the 39th Troop Carrier Squadron at Lockbourne AFB, Ohio, from June to October 1966, and then served as Chief of the 840th Air Division Command Post for the 317th Tactical Airlift Wing at Lockbourne AFB, from October 1966 until his retirement from the Air Force on December 1, 1969. Carl Luksic died on May 24, 2009, and was buried at the Kent Forest Lawn Cemetery in Panama City, Florida.
His Distinguished Service Cross Citation reads:
For extraordinary heroism in action with the enemy, 8 May 1944. On this date Lieutenant Luksic with his flight attacked and dispersed a force of more than fifteen enemy fighters which were engaging a friendly bomber formation and through the aggressiveness of his attack destroyed two enemy planes. Finding himself separated from his flight, he fearlessly continued his attacks and destroyed a third enemy plane. He then joined two friendly fighters and led them in determined attack against more than twenty enemy fighters, and running short of fuel and ammunition, Lieutenant Luksic displayed further will and determination to damage the enemy by expending his remaining ammunition in destroying four oil tank cars on a railway siding. The extraordinary heroism and aggressiveness displayed by Lieutenant Luksic in the face of overwhelming odds reflect highest credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of the United States.