Politics

Creator Of Vietnam-Era Draft Lottery Dies At Walnut Creek Home

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Vietnam War

Picture taken 29 November 1967 of South Vietnamese soldiers defending their position on the Hill 875 as NVA (North Vietnamese Army) made a massive assault. (Ennio Iacobucci/AFP/GettyImages)

WALNUT CREEK (CBS/AP) — The former federal official who created the lottery for the draft during the Vietnam War has died at age 88.

Curtis Tarr died at his home in Walnut Creek on Friday. His daughter, Pam Tarr, said Wednesday that her father died of pneumonia.

Tarr was appointed director of the Selective Service System in 1970, by President Richard Nixon.

Pam Tarr says her father wanted to eliminate an exemption for college students and make the draft more equitable. He instituted a lottery system based on birthdays that were picked on national television.

He later served as under secretary of state for security assistance, with responsibility for military programs with other nations.

Pam Tarr says her father probably would have described the lottery as his greatest responsibility, not his greatest achievement.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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