Drexel was born on August 31, 1938 at the old Lakeview hospital in downtown Suffolk. He moved to Chuckatuck with his parents in 1940 and lived there until graduation from Virginia Tech in 1960. In 1962 he joined the Navy and received his Wings of Gold in 1963. Two tours in F-4 Phantom Jets in Vietnam followed very closely on the USS Kitty Hawk. He retired from the Navy in 1991 as a Captain having served as the Commanding Officer of VF-102 the Diamond Backs, and his last duty station was the Commanding Officer of FASOTRAGRULANT in Norfolk, VA. Drexel went to work for ISI building interactive courseware for F-14 and E-2 crewmembers until 2001 when prostate cancer reminded him that he would not live for ever. He retrired from his commercial work in 2001 and has enjoyed his boat Destiny and RV taking some extensive trips.