548th Tributes 1975 – 2017

Member Provided Tributes and Obituaries (By Date)
Send your tributes, additions and corrections to [email protected]

CMSgt (ret) Loomis Robertson, 548 RTS Photo Lab, Yokota AB, Japan, early  1950’s, passed away on July 11, 2017 in Oxford, Mississippi. 

                                        8 July 1933 – 11 Jul 2017

                                             Robbie and Betty

Mr. Loomis L. Robertson, 87, passed away Tuesday, July 11, 2017, at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Oxford, MS. 

Mr. Robertson was born in Ellard, MS. He was a member of the Oxford Church of Christ, and he served 27 years in the U.S. Air Force. He loved outside activities such as hunting, fishing, and golfing. However, his favorite things were family gatherings, traveling, and spoiling his wife. 

Visitation will be held Friday, July 14, 2017, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Coleman Funeral Home. A funeral service will be held Saturday, July 15, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. also at Coleman Funeral Home. Interment will be at the Garden of Memories Cemetery in Oxford. Bro. Lendy Barlett will officiate. 

He is survived by his wife, Betty Robertson of Oxford; two sons, Edward (Monika) Robertson of Webster, NY, and Ronald (Diane) Robertson of Oxford; one daughter, Rhonda Robertson Stewart of Oxford; three granddaughters, Christine Robertson of Webster, and Sarah Stewart and Jessica Stewart, both of Boise, ID; and two grandsons, William Robertson of Webster, and Gary Stote of Oxford.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Nellie Collums Parker; his step-father, Berry Collums; and his cousin Billy D. Walls.

In honor of Mr. Robertson’s service to our country, the flag of the United States Air Force will be flown at Coleman Funeral Home. 

Memorials and donations may be made in honor of Mr. Robertson to Oxford Church of Christ; P.O. Box 1500, Oxford, MS 38655.

Online condolences may be left on the Tribute Wall at www.colemanfuneralhome.com.
(Note:  Age appears to be wrong in obituary, two sources found for the 1933 birth year)


Loomis (Robbie) was a great man and one of the last of us who still exist from the the old aerial photo reconnaissance days. He was one of the best.

Robbie, as a youngster, worked for me in the 548th RTS at the beginning of the Korean War at Yokota AB, Japan when all hell broke loose in the reconnaissance intelligence area. Processing of imagery was day and night with no sleep, inadequate equipment, and shortage of personnel. Robbie survived and became an outstanding technician and leader in the photo reconnaissance field.

Over the years, Robbie and I continued to work in defense of our great country both in the military and civilian life until retirement. We worked together on various top secret U-2 and SR-71 projects overseas and in the USA, assisting USA and Allies with their defense programs. We may have been stationed in different countries, but we always crossed paths and worked together in establishing the technical ramifications and training of personnel for different photo reconnaissance programs, especially the U-2 and SR-71 imaging platforms, which eventually became subordinate to the spy satellite programs , in which I was heavily involved for many years.

Robbie’s last intelligence connection was with Kodak’s  Federal Department of Defense program known as Bridgehead where he worked for a number of years as a civilian. As a manager/engineer with CIA, on a technical visit to Kodak, I once met Robbie demonstrating a sophisticated high resolution imagery processor.

There was only one ‘Robbie’ Robertson whose friendship endured for about 70 years. He was a professional, a leader, and always displayed a positive attitude, even during the most distressful circumstances.

Our condolences to Betty, his wife, who gave Robbie a lot of support for 61 years. God bless you Betty, and your family. May Robbie rest in peace which he well deserves.

Jim Grimm  11 Jun 2019

Phil Gerg – July 12, 2017 Robbie was my mentor. He was the man at the top of our field. Robbie knew more about SR_71 and U-2 operations than any man in the field. Robbie has a wonderful family and Jeanne and I always felt welcome with them. I could go on forever but we have lost a man that the hole can never be filled. He was my best buddy and I’ll never ever forget him. RIP my friend.  

Gene Stoddard  I had the privilege of working with Loomis, while a member of the 4080th SW. Then S/SGT Robertson was a great example for us younger airman. What I remember best is what a truly decent man he was.God speed Robbie. Gene Stoddard, Schenectady, NY.


SMSgt (ret) Max R. Rodgers, PI 548 RTS and 67 RTS, 1964 – 1967, passed away on May 23, 2017 in Boonville, New York.
                                 March 8, 1941 – May 23, 2017

Max R. Rodgers, USAF, SMSgt. Retired2, 76, of 2449 St. Rt. 69, passed away on Tuesday, May 23, 2017, at Sunset Nursing Home in Boonville where he had been a patient since May 12, 2017. 

 He was born on March 8, 1941, in West Salem, Illinois, the son of Loren F. and Amy S. Knachmuhs Rodgers.  Max was a graduate of Wilmington High School in Wilmington, IL, Class of 1959.  He went on to attended many different colleges all over the world. 

      On November 2, 1968, Max was united in marriage to Joyce J. Rambow in Green Garden Church in Manhattan, IL.  They moved to Camden in 1985 after living in Nevada, California, Hawaii, and Virginia.

    Max proudly served his country for twenty-one and a half years as a member of the United States Air Force, retiring on November 30, 1981, with a rank of Sr. Master Sgt.  Max received several medals and decorations throughout his career including the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Military Education Ribbon, the Air Force Longevity Service Award Ribbon with Four Oak Leaf Cluster, the Vietnam Service Medal with Four Bronze Service Stars, the Air Force Good Conduct Medal with Five Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Air Force Commendation Medal with Four Oak Leaf Clusters.          

        He later worked for Dolphin Technologies in Oneida, and previously worked for Knowledge System Concepts in Rome. 

      Max was a skilled woodworker and talented musician who enjoyed old time Appalachian Mountain music.  He was a history enthusiast and participated in Revolutionary War reenactments.  He was a voracious reader.    He was a former member of the Westernville American Legion Post 1846.   

      Surviving besides his loving wife, Joyce; are one brother, Herman L. “Buck” (Judy) Rodgers, of Wilmington, IL; a sister-in-law, Delia “Sis” Rodgers, of Wisconsin; and several nieces and nephews.  Max was predeceased by two brothers, D. Gene (Elaine) Rodgers, and John D. Rodgers. 

      Funeral services will be held on Sunday, May 28, 2017, at 4:00 PM at the LaRobardiere Funeral Home, Inc., where the Rev. Gary Van Riper will officiate.  Interment with Military Honors will take place in Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Albion, Edwards Co., IL, on May 31, 2017.  Family and friends are invited and may call on Sunday from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM at the funeral home, 109 Main St., Camden.

Larry Odell  Growing old has many problems, one of which is seeing so many of one’s colleagues and friends leave the scene. I knew Max Rodgers well those many years ago while I was in the Air Force and later with SAIC. Good man and a hard worker. He will be missed by all.

Gil Taylor  Max worked at the 67th and 548th from 1964 to 1967. Then supported F111 testing in Vietnam and Thailand during 1968. Followed by Radar Prediction and Bomb Scoring work at Nellis & Misawa until 1971. Finally served as a Senior PI Chief and Carto Supervisor at March, Hickam & Langley until 1981. Larry Odell, Col, USAF, Retired



MSgt (ret) Joshua Calvin, 548 RTG Training Division, 1987 – 1991, passed away on May 18, 2017 in Austin Texas.

                             September 28, 1957 – May 18, 2017

                         Connie and Josh at Dayton Reunion 2010 

            Connie and Josh 548th Christmas Party 1990-ish

The following was posted by Connie on Josh’s Caring Bridge Page on 6  June 2017:   We held a private celebration of Josh’s life last night, with the help of those amazingly generous and gifted friends and family who’ve been with us throughout this journey. Tony emceed the evening, providing pastoral insights as well as perfectly timed comic relief. Laura, Ted, JR, Janet, and Derek performed a beautiful, contemporary version of “It Is Well With My Soul” and “Dixie, I’m Comin’” – a song written by Josh’s blue grass musician brother Jim, who also died from lung cancer 11 years ago.

Charlotte created a presentation of pictures and videos of her father throughout his life that we will post to his Facebook page and Caring Bridge in a day or so. Peter (Josh’s oldest brother) and his family drove in from Dallas, through a torrential thunderstorm that threatened to spoil our event. But God showed up in His divine way and provided the absolutely gorgeous sunset you see in the photo. 

Everyone who attended represent the various seasons in Josh’s life: family who knew him as a child; sons who knew him as a young father; friends we knew from Hawaii when we renewed our vows at our 10th wedding anniversary; friends who worked with Josh; friends who played music with Josh at church; and friends who started out as clients of Austin Cloud First, the business Josh and I started in 2015.

After Josh was diagnosed, I met three amazing women in my community (Jenn, Carolyn, and Jade) who are part of a local halau – a traditional Hawaiian hula troupe, led by Kumu Jenn. They performed two love songs – Pua Mana and Ke Aloha – and so many people told me afterwards how moved they were by the grace and beauty of the dance. 

Did I mention the sunset? It’s worth mentioning again if only to explain that right around 4:30 pm – just when commuter traffic is starting to thicken – there was a torrential downpour and flash flooding. Some of our guests were unable to come because of it. All week long the weather prognosticators said our event would be soaked and a visible sunset was likely a wisp of a dream. What actually happened is one of those divinely orchestrated circumstance and timing events where the rain moved out of the way and the remaining clouds provided just the right amount of contrast that resulted in a brilliant sunset. It was a perfect gift from a perfect Father that added to a perfect celebration of Josh’s life.

Tony talked about the fruit of the Spirit 1 Corinthians 13:4-7… “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

These were attributes that Josh aspired to and believed in. Phill spoke of his father’s character and how much Josh loved the people in the room. I spoke of our relationship and about how important community was in these last months and the impact their friendship, encouragement, and help had. I shared Josh’s last journal entry from April 14, 2017. He wrote:

“Gratitude, humility. I am taken back by these. The friends, family who have reached out and are giving, offering rides, yard work, food, prayer, an ear. It does change your view of things.

Talking with [friends] yesterday, day before. Know[ing] they really care along with the rest of the group + friends + family. Life is different and today is more of a blessing than I realize. 

God, I am in Your hands.”

It was a perfect evening, and Josh is now “perfected”.

                            Josh’s Celebration Sunset from Connie

Thanks very much for sharing that story and I offer my most sincere condolences to you, his family members, and friends. I remember him as a great Air Force gentleman who I’m very proud to have served with.   Most of my family members are gone now too  but once the Good Lord brought my Dear Mother back to life after she had passed during open heart surgery, and she told me of what she could recall of that experience during the 3 or 4 minutes her heart stopped altogether.   Some of that story was identical to other real life situations that I have read over the years since she passed four years later and has really deepened my heart in love and faith in God above and has given me great strength.   I think one of the best and most rewarding books I’ve ever read was a book named “Proof of Heaven’ by Dr. Eben Alexander about 5 or 6 years ago, for me it was very rewarding in knowing good people that who was created on earth and we had the honor to share some of it with like  Josh, is in a far better place now.
Warmest Regards, Art Riles

SSgt Dave Gustafson, 548 RTG Exploitation, October 1968 to Early 1972, passed away on January 5, 2017 in Clovis, California.

David H. Gustafson, age 59 of Clovis Ca, passed away on Thursday, January 5, 2017, after an extended illness.  David was born in Los Angeles, CA, to Gustaf and Henrietta Gustafson. He was raised in Palmdale, CA, and graduated from Palmdale High School. After graduation, he continued on to the United States Air Force where he served for four years. When he was 27, he joined the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department where he served for over 25 years, retiring in 2002 as Captain. David had a passion for photography that began in high school. During his time as a Sheriff’s Deputy, he volunteered as a legal advisor for multiple children’s programs. In retirement, he was involved in local elementary schools, helping to provide enriched education experiences for kids. He also cared deeply for families of fallen officers, doing what he could to ensure that they were supported. During their 20 year time together, David and Carol were active in their community and were known for their loving spirit and generosity. David is survived by his loving wife Carol; his daughter Gretta; his sister, Marit Does; his first wife Betty; his nieces and nephews; and the rest of his family and friends. The family wishes to thank the church and staff of Campus Bible Church; DaVita Herndon Dialysis; Fresno County Sheriff Department; Sheriff, Margaret Mims; Assistant Sheriff, Tom Gatti; and Clovis Police Department Chaplain, Hank Barr. A Funeral Service will be held at Campus Bible Church, 4710 N. Maple, Fresno, CA, on Saturday, January 14, 2017, at 3:00 p.m.

Mark Jessop:  Gus was a good man. He was the photographer when my late wife Doreen and I were married at the base chapel at Hickam in 1971.

Dennis Whittaker:  Gus was a good friend of ours at the 548th and in fact, he was the photographer at our wedding on the base in May of 1970. So sorry to hear about his passing.

Jim Wells:  I went through Tech School with Dave from April to September 1968.  After leave we went to Hickam in early October 1968. I took an early out to go back to school in December 1971. Gus stayed in for the two or three months he had left on his enlistment and was discharged in early 1972.   Gus and I roomed together for approximately two and a half years.  The other change I would like to see is Dave’s rank. We were very competitive in seeking Staff Sgt, Dave beating me by one month in sewing on his fourth stripe.  That would have been around February 1971 for him.  This was very sad news for those of us that served with Gus. 

SMSgt (ret) Vern Akers, 67th RTS and 548th RTG, January 1970 – August 1974, Charting and Exploitation, passed away on  May 13, 2016 in Fort Washington, Maryland.

Vern at 2014 reunion with DNI Gen Clapper and Elton Stokes

                                Vern and his classic ride
Elton Stokes emailed on May 16th:  Friends & Former Coworkers,  It is with a heavy heart that I pass along the following information regarding our friend Vern Akers.   Vern passed away at his home on last Friday, May 13. His funeral will be held Friday, May 20th, at Arehart-Echols Funeral home in La Plata, MD.  Please keep Vern’s wife Connie and the entire Akers family in your prayers. Connie asked that I pass the word along


Vernon Walter Akers, 74, of Fort Washington MD passed away on Friday, May 13, 2016 unexpectedly at home.  He was the husband of 54 years to Mary Constance (Connie) Harris Akers.

 He was born on November 9, 1941, in Covington, VA.  He was the son of the late James Lucas Akers and Ruby Ethel Snead Akers.

Vernon proudly served in the US Air force for 20 years retiring at the early age of 40 as a Senior Master Sergeant. The military life took his family on a wonderful tour starting in Nebraska overseas to Japan back state side to Hawaii, California and finally retiring in the Maryland/D.C area. He served a year in Vietnam. His next chapter continued as an Intelligence Analyst with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) until 1998. Once retired from DIA, he embraced his love for classic cars and blue grass music.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his son, James Christopher Akers and his wife, Lisa of Port Tobacco, MD; daughter, Brenda Christine Akers Weigle of Frederick, MD; five grandchildren, Ryan Weigle, Colin Weigle, Lauren Akers Morgan (Dennis Morgan), James Jared Akers, Morgan Akers; and one great-grandson, Cash Weigle.  He is also survived by his brother, Herbert W. Akers and his wife, Karol; sister-in-law, Norma J. Akers; and multiple nieces, nephews and cousins.  He was preceded in death by his sister, Anne Akers Boyer; and brothers, James L. Akers and Harold N. Akers.

The family will receive friends for a Viewing starting at 1:30 pm followed by a 3:00 pm Funeral Service on Friday, May 20, 2016 at the Arehart-Echols Funeral Home, 211 St. Mary’s Avenue, La Plata, MD 20646; Interment will take place at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. Online condolences for the family may be posted at arehartechols.com.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made in Vernon’s memory to Three Oaks Center, whose mission is to support veteran’s and their families by providing services and support so that noone has to be homeless.  Contributions can be sent to Three Oaks Center, P.O. Box 776, Lexington Park, MD 20653 or made on-line at www.ThreeOaksCenter.Org.

A $50 donation in the name of the 548th and 67th Reconnaissance Association has been made to the Three Oaks Center.

Susan Beidler:  Thoughts and prayers go out to Connie and family. Have fond memories of reunions and knowing Vern.

Dick Curley:  Vern and I were stationed together in Japan for a couple years. Always found him to be a dedicated photo interpreter and outstanding NCO.

Alton Matherne:  Vern was my first boss when I arrived at 67RTS in Japan in 1968 fresh from Tech School. His enthusiasm, concern and superb PI abilities helped me along to become good at the job. His attitude was one of a friend rather than a boss and we shared many laughs along the years at Yokota and in Vietnam where we both ended up on the next assignment. I was invited to visit Vern & Connie several times and we enjoyed a bit of Louisiana Cajun cooking which I was rubbish at but there was always good times and a warm family welcome which I very much enjoyed. My sincere condolences to Connie and the family. Vern was a treasure and I am sure will be sadly missed. Remember the joy of sharing your life with him and relish in that memory, he was a very special man!

Cecil Brown:  Vern was the best and carried me on his shoulders. He was by-named requested to our office at the pentagon and in true fashion carried the ball for us and established an AF PI unit at bldg 213. As a result the unit shined and high government ranks was achieved by many of our troops. One thing I could not shake was the “Capt Flapp” name he and Monroe adapted from the Lt Flapp cartoon character from Beatle Bailey comic character. Love you Vern Akers!!  

Gary Taylor:  I’m so sorry to hear of Vern’s passing. He was an excellent example of an NCO. I worked with him, indirectly, at the 548th at Hickam. Vern was always very sensible, thoughtful and encouraging. He loved his work and appreciated all those he came in contact with. He was one of the few positive, calming individuals we could relate with at the 548th. When changes were announced that were unsettling, he had a way of calming everyone in his surroundings. A very great colleague. He will be missed. I hope to attend the ceremony at Arlington, unfortunately I can’t come to the funeral. My thoughts and prayers are with Vern’s family. God Bless you all as you remember Vern.

Art Gomes:  Vern: Thanks for your many years of service with DIA. I can’t help but remember the number of times your analysis on the Middle Est countries you worked made a significant contribution to the analytical questions we were trying to respond to in a very timely manner. 

Bill Forsyth:  I was stationed with Vern in both Japan and Hawaii, he was a good friend and outstanding PI.  

Norman Lee:  First met Vern in 1965 at 67RTS in Japan, again in Vietnam, and later in the DC area. Last saw him at the NGA Alumni luncheon May 2015. He was a true friend and will be missed.  
God bless you and your family. Once again, thanks so very much.

Steve LaFata:  Thoughts and prayers for the family…Vern was a great guy and I agree…one heck of a PI.

Elton Stokes:  Vern was inspiring! He was an exceptional intel analyst and a manager that I was proud to serve with. But best of all he was my very close friend. RIP buddy. You’ll always be alive in my heart. Aloha.

Mark Jessop:  A fine man.

Jim Spencer:  Vern was so much to so many. We spent a few hours dragging plastic lures through the ocean. Too many to recount but so wonderful to recall in one’s mind. These photos were taken on the first Ahi Tournament —

James Davis:  I am so sad to hear of Vern’s passing. Worked with him at the CTS (former 15th AF Recce Tech) at March AFB, CA 1975-1976. He had a great sense of humor and was a great P.I. His comical emails kept everyone in stitches. He will be sorely missed.

David Mrskos:  American hero. RIP

Art Beidler:  Susan and I paid our respects to Vern and Connie yesterday at the funeral home in LA Plata, MD. I’ve known Vern since our days at the 67th RTS and again when he worked at Bldg 213 for DIA. Those of us who knew Vern and served with him will miss him and his at time wry sense of humor and dedication to his profession. Connie attested to his strength of spirit in his battle with declining health. We will all miss him.

SMSgt (ret) Edward Nelson,548 RTG Research and Analysis, Exploitation,  01/71 – 03/75 and 11/76 – 01/81, PACom Air Defense Analysis Facility, 12/83 – 12/86, passed away on January 11, 2016 in Fort Washington, Maryland.

Ed and Yon Sun

Col Vandenberg re-enlisting Ed in March 1975

Edward Owen Nelson, Jr

August 28, 1949 –

On Monday, January 11th, our brother and your friend Edward Nelson passed away. Ed was born on

August 28th, 1949. He was 66 years old. He was the oldest of six children born to Edward Owen Nelson and Helen Jean Nelson (Mummery), Edward’s siblings; Barbara Freeman, David J. Nelson, Donna Anderson, Elizabeth Gumerman, and Jeanne Nelson will dearly miss him. Ed has many uncles, aunts, cousins, nieces and nephews that were so much a part of his life and people that he has touched in so many ways. 

Ed had an eight month battle with cancer. In this short time, he showed us what tenacity is all about, how important family is, and how love can be the strongest of all virtues. 

Through his battle he never gave up, and continued to contact his family and friends. Ed did like to use his computer! Edward’s wife Yon Sun Nelson was so graceful and helped Ed survive with such great love. Yon Sun and Ed were married for over 30 years!Our family would like to extend thanks to Ed’s brother in law, Billy Pierce, his wife Yon Hwa, and their family for their instrumental help. We appreciate Ed’s work friends (SAIC and American Systems), his military buddies, and other friends and family that kept in touch and visited him during these 8 months. Great appreciation is extended to Dr. Yang and the staff at Johns Hopkins for their incredible care and expertise. Edward’s friends and ministers at One Mind Church gave him strong support. Ed just became a deacon when he was diagnosed. He was very proud of this achievement. 

Ed was a 20 year veteran of the Air Force reaching the rank of Senior Master Sergeant. While in the Air Force, he earned two college degrees. He served in many ways in keeping our country safe. He worked on technologies that helped to keep soldiers safe in the middle east. Ed had strong ideas about government and society. He was never one to accept the status quo. He was a proud and involved American. He believed in hard work and because of his service, Ed will be interned at Arlington National Cemetery at a date to be determined.

Edward’s service will take place this Saturday, 5:00 PM at One Mind Presbyterian Church of Washington. All are welcome to join us in a celebration and remembrance of his life. The date of the Arlington burial can be found at this web site at a later date. Please sign the online guest book located below.
Guest Book:  http://www.kalasfuneralhomes.com/memsol.cgi?user_id=1732128#Read Guest BooK:http://www.kalasfuneralhomes.com/memsol.cgi?user=89361630_ENelsonJr&viewGuest=1George P. Kalas Funeral Home P.A.
2973 Solomons Island Rd
Edgewater, MD 21037 

Randy Johnson Posted on Ed’s Facebook page:   It was a great service. Ed would have been proud. It was a great honor to see retired Major Don Waddell and other 548RTG members. Ed left this world a much better place. Aloha Ed.

Billy Jack Pierce posted on Ed’s Facebook page:  Ed’s memorial service will be this Saturday 16 January 2016 at 5 p.m. At the church he and Yon Sun attended. One Mind Presbyterian Church, 13430 Millwood Drive Woodbridge, VA. 22191 His funeral will take place later once we arrange the details through Arlington National Cemetery, this will take some time due to ANCs process and scheduling. Once I have that arranged the details will be posted here also. For all Ed’s friends and associates, please pass this information to all who may want to attend the memorial service.

Billy Jack Pierce posted on Facebook:  I have sad news to report. Ed Nelson passed away today at 6 p.m. He fought long and hard but the cancer took him, he went peaceful. Yon Sun had spent most of the day with him, had given him a haircut and departed like all the previous day’s, with a kiss and “I’ll see you tomorrow “. Ed’s friend Randy Johnson stopped by to deliver a milkshake and visit, noticed Ed’s breathing was not normal, alerted the staff, they contacted an ambulance but Ed passed before they arrived. As details are worked out I will provide updates on funeral arrangements. We lost a true patriot, a hero, a great husband, brother, uncle, friend and my brother in law…..a great American!  

Bill Forsyth  We have lost a great friend and an outstanding PI.

Patricia Miller   R. I. P. Ed. You were an inspiration to me & countless others over the years. Prayers for your family.

Martha Mackey North   Prayers to Yon Sun and all his loved ones! RIP.

Marianne Chisholm  This is sad news. He was very kind to me when I was at the 548th. Great guy…

Kirk Darling  Rest in peace, Ed. Dang.

Scott McKenna  RIP

Mark Olsen  A great colleague and better friend. RIP Ed.

Kevin R. Fraleigh Ed was a great guy. Will be missed.

Steven Pagel  RIP. You will be missed, Ed.

John Pecarina  RIP Ed

Fred Wiles   Sad news. Ed was my first NCOIC when I arrived at 548RTG. We lost a good man.

William Germer So long, Ed. See you in that Great Hangar in the sky, one day.

Craig Nipper  RIP Brother

Joseph Murphy  Sorry to hear this news. Enjoyed working with him back in the day!

Ray Miller  As a young airmen in the 80s I learned a lot from Ed, about how to be a good PI, a good NCO, and a good person. He will be truly missed. Rest In Love Mr. Nelson.

Gilbert Taylor I am so very sad to learn that. Ed Nelson was the best of the best.

Carol Jones So sorry to hear this. RIP, Ed.

Steve Martz  I was so saddened to hear of Ed’s passing. He was a mentor and friend back in the day. Lost touch but reconnected recently. Thoughts and prayers are with Yon Sun, his family and his many friends. Ed was definitely one of the great guys I’ve met in my lifetime.

Phil Oliva  God Bless Ed and bless Yon Sun too. Good guy, good friend. RIP, Semper Fi brother.

Chet Fammini  I remember conferring with Ed on a couple of occasions; he was a great PI. My condolences to the family and sorrow for your personal loss.

Andy Anderson  I knew him well. It is sad.  Can we quietly share a toast to Ed in Vegas?   

Max Alexander  Although no sculptured marble should rise to their memory, nor engraved stone bear record of their deeds, yet will their remembrance be as lasting as the land they honored. Daniel Webster

Bill Renderknecht   RIP, Ed. Yon Sun, you’re in our prayers.

Charles Harding  I too have had an opportunity to visit Ed twice, but it still hurt, it really hurt.

Gil Taylor  Ed Nelson was the best of the best, in all regards. I first met him in 1985 when I traveled to the 548th on behalf of SAIC to assess the needs for support of the IDEX II System. Bob Calnan (RIP) and I spent two weeks talking to everyone in the organization about the mission of the 548th, the details of each operation within, the interface between components of the 548th, and everything else relative to the mission of the 548th RTG and their preparation for IDEX. Of all the many fine people with whom we spent time, Ed Nelson was shoulders above everyone, including the senior members of the staff, in terms of technical knowledge and all aspects of the mission there. I have never in my life been so impressed by a single individual.  In addition to all of the above, he was a very good, loving, human being who will be missed by all who were blessed with the opportunity to know him. I am so saddened to learn of his passing. Such is life.

My great friend, a mentor, a leader in a sea of confusion is gone. This was my beloved brother Edward Nelson. This man continued to post, encourage in a battle we all face….life, and the door forward.

No one knows the pain of death better than the Master and His servant. The question is who do we serve, and which of two doors do we reach for. Who is our Master, and is ours a life well lived? Ed’s was. 

My dear friend Edwardo as I affectionately, teased him was not a overbearing, slighted or readily angered man. Ed was a man of principal, a man who expected to lead with purpose, heart, and charity. A soft spoken leader served, not wallowing in intrigue but, following the example of the Master in the fellowship of mankind.

Few lead by deeds, their talk is cheap and their value base is shallow….Not Ed. Although we cannot fully know the heart of a man, Christ the Master can. Our deeds, are our the banner that defines us in this life and the next.

Yes folks it does matter who we serve and Ed claimed “the path” of life.

My friend had eyes, ears and feet of action. I think he answered the simple question placed before all of us…..do we serve self, or Him? Specifically, the first to taste and overcome death.

Thank you God for the gift of Ed, he was a symbol of strenght in a world gone mad. If we can reflect at all on what made this person special…Ed, your servant, tried to reflect the Master.

Welcome home Ed, may we walk the path that joins to you.

Brett Pierce  My uncle, a veteran, and the kindest person I knew has died from cancer. Rest in peace, Uncle Ed. I will miss you and I will never forget everything you’ve done for me, Sean, and the whole family. You were always there for us and would always support us no matter what. I can not be more thankful to have had someone as great as you in my life. I really wish you didn’t have to be taken from us so soon, but at least now I know the pain is gone and you’re in a better place. I love you, Uncle Ed.

Rick Breedlove  Please keep us informed and tell Yon Sun we are morning the loss of Ed and keeping her in our prayers.

Paul Armstrong  Ed, RIP my friend.

Tony Paik   RIP… You will be missed Edward Nelson! Cancer Sucks!

MSgt (ret) Michael Hall, 548 RTG Map Library, INOI, INOD, and I&W, June 1976 – June 1978, passed away on September 27, 2015, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

 Michael and Virginia Hall at 2012 Reunion

Virginia Hall Wrote:  It is with deep sadness that I write to inform you that Michael D. Hall of the 548th RTG had passed away peacefully this morning after an accidental finding to a brief illness.  A true patriot, he was indeed very proud to have served with the 548th group members. 
Memorial services will be held at:
Location:  Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery
Date:  Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Time: 1:20 p.m.
Address:  1900 Veterans Memorial Drive, Boulder City, NV 89005

Following the service, a reception will be held at:8625 Stone Harbor Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89145

In lieu of flowers please donate to the Disabled American Veterans
Mahalo, Virginia Hall

Bill & Sue Willard:  Sad News, indeed. Our condolences to the families.

Clinton Rogers: Truly sad news.  

Maureen DeNunzio:  Sad. Thoughts and prayers for his family.

Gary Gohn:  Sad. Prayers too all that new and loved him.

Patricia Miller:  Sad news indeed. Prayers for his family and all who knew and loved him.

Rosie Bryant: We served at the same time there in Hangar D. My condolences to the friends and family left behind.

David Blakley:  My condolences to Virginia and family.  I didn’t know Mike as I got to the 548th in Sep 1982.  Praying/wishing peace and great memories for Virginia and his family/friends.

John Pecarina: Sad; I went to Tech school with Mike, later served with him at the 548th

Jim Grant:  Very sad news. 

Bill Forsyth: Michael was a great guy  and friend and I was so happy to see both of you at the reunions.  My prayers go out to you at this time of grief, we can be grateful that he did not suffer through a long illness as so many have. 

Robert “Bob” Straw, SrA, 548 RTG Exploitation, 1974 – 1978, passed away on July 3, 2015 in Clinton, Missouri. 
Robert “Bob” Rush Straw

Born: June 14, 1953
Died: July 03, 2015U.S. VeteranRobert “Bob” R. Straw, of Clinton, MO, passed away, Friday July 3, 2015 at St. Luke’s Hospice House, Kansas City, Missouri. A memorial service will be held 7:00 P.M. Wednesday, July 15, 2015 at the Clinton Elks Lodge. The family will receive friends from 5:00-6:30 P.M. prior to the service. The family suggests memorial contributions be made to the HRB Staff Scholarship Endowment or ASC Hope Lodge and may be left in care of the funeral home. Fond memories and condolences can be left online at www.vansant-millsfuneralhome.com. Arrangements have been entrusted to Vansant-Mills Funeral Home of Clinton, Missouri. 

Robert Rush (Bob) Straw was born June 14, 1953, the younger son of William Rush Straw and Helen Louise Tuter Straw, at the naval facility in Norfolk, Virginia. However, he was raised in Clinton by his paternal aunt Elizabeth Straw Hay and Olaf Hay, who lived across the street from the old high school. 

Bob sang with both the Clinton High School choir and his church choir, where he had been a member since childhood. He remained close to the directors, Don Coleman and Mike Murphy for many years. Bob’s love of music continued throughout his life as he taught himself to play several Jimmy Buffet’s songs on his uncle’s mandolin. 

He enrolled at Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU) that fall and studied vocal Music for a year. In his one season of soccer, he was known for breaking the ankle of the Crown Prince Liberia during a game. It was at OBU where he met his future wife, Iris Dianne (Dee) Walker from Santa Fe, New Mexico, who was also studying vocal music and piano. 

He was married and entered the U. S. Air Force in 1972 and was stationed in El Paso, Denver, Omaha, and Honolulu. Both of his children were born at military hospitals: Jennifer Ruth Colorado and Robert Rush, Jr. (BJ) in Hawaii. The family moved to Clinton in 1978. 

Bob as well as both children graduated from Clinton High School. Bob completed his Bachelor’s degree from Central Missouri State University and was only one class short of his Master’s. He was proud to have been a teaching assistant for the late Professor Davila. 

Bob retired form the United States Postal Service in 2005. In his early years, he worked in law enforcement in Henry County and the surrounding area. After retirement, he often substituted in local school districts. 

Bob also enjoyed reading, watching old movies, deer hunting, target practicing and playing cards at the old Elk’s Lodge. He held many officer positions within the Clinton Elk’s Lodge and was on the Missouri Americanism Committee for many years. 

Bob enjoyed working with Boy Scouts. He spent many summers attending and working at the H. Roe Bartle Scout Reservation. In addition to many years on staff at Rotary Camp for special needs Scouts. 

Bob’s boyhood Scouting began in Troop 430 and ended as an adult with the position of Scout Master in the same troop. He was an Eagle Scout, a Sachem in the Tribe of Mic-O-Say, and a Vigil Member of the Order of the Arrow. December 7, 1989, he and two friends, John Glenn and the late Kevin Frederick founded Troop 2, which was sponsored by the Clinton Elk’s and lasted over 20 years. As an adult he earned numerous District and Council awards for his work with the Boy Scouts. 

Bob was preceded in death by his parents, William Rush & Helen Louise, Olaf & Elizabeth Hay, multiple aunts, uncles, and cousins, his brother Barney, 3 beloved cocker spaniels PJ, Goliath, and Data. 

Bob is survived by his wife Dee and devoted dog Dax of the home, his daughter Jennifer, son & daughter-in-law BJ and Erin, a brother & sister-in-law Bill and Rita Darlene, and many nieces, nephews and their children.

John Pecarina Robert (Bob) Straw passed this morning.  Bob was a teammate during the late 1970s, in the 548th RTG Exploitation Center. He was 62.

Patrick O’Conner  Bob was a good friend from the 548th RTG many years ago.  Dee my prayers are with you and your family.


Mike “Guido” Guidara, SrA, 548 RTG Exploitation, 1982-1985, passed away on June 12, 2015 in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

Obituary for Michael D. Guidara 

Michael David F. Guidara  Loving husband, father, grandfather, son, Air Force Veteran, and friend

 LEOMINSTER — Michael David F. Guidara, of Council Bluff, Iowa, formerly of Leominster passed away suddenly at the age of 52.He was born in Plattsburg AFB, N.Y. on January 31, 1963, son of Frank and Lea (Chica) Guidara. He lived in Leominster until entering the U.S. Air Force in 1981. Michael graduated from Leominster High School class of 1981, and then attended the Air Force Community College. He was always an outstanding athlete and sports fan. Michael played basketball, Baseball, and football, while in the Air Force and also the Leominster Recreation leagues.Michael spent eleven years in the U.S. Air Force, before being medically retired due to injuries suffered during Desert Storm in Iraq. He then worked for 18 years for the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Dept. before being injured, requiring back surgery.Michael is survived by his wife Janice Guidara of Iowa; his father Frank Guidara of Leominster; his daughter, Evonne Nelson and husband Adam, his granddaughter Felicity of Omaha; his son, Christopher Guidara of FL; brother, Robert Guidara and wife Taymy of FL; many aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews, here in the U.S. and Italy.Michael is predeceased by his mother Lea (Chica) Ham and his step mother, Pearl (DiGeronimo) Guidara, who raised him in Leominster. He is also predeceased by grandparents on both sides of the family.  A graveside service will be held on Saturday, June 27, at 10:00 am in Saint Leo’s Cemetery in Leominster. – Published in Sentinel & Enterprise on June 24, 2015

 William Germer  Sad news from the 544th SIW page. “A very sad note to pass along… Mike Guidara has passed away. If you knew “Guido”, you are sad today as I am. He was one of the “Good Guys”. He was a great PI, mentor, NCO, Sheriff’s Deputy and friend. He was my friend, and I will miss him. Rest in Peace, Guido… we are all better and safer because you chose to be who you were and do what you did…”

 Michael Kiser Sad, too soon, great guy!

 Mike Lane RIP MIKE Mike Guidara

 Bill Forsyth Rest in peace Mike, gone in the prime of life.

 Robert Ackerman I refuse to like this. Prayers for all concerned.

 Steven Clark yup was on 1n1x1 page last nite… shocker….good squint…friend… it hurts..

 John Wickman Wow. That sucks! See you on the next pass Mike!

 Christopher Biskup Sad News. Many good memories and fun times with Guido.

 Benjamin Gomes I am heart broke, our friends are leaving much too soon and quick

 Jim Grant Guido was a great guy and a big part of our mission success. Why do good folks die so young? Very sad…

 Pete Kennelly Hey everyone, it’s with great sadness that I tell you that our friend Mike Guidara passed away this morning. His daughter is updating his Facebook page with details as they become available.

 Roger DeSantis Damn!!!

 Jeff Simon That’s just sad

 Nancy Walters Very sad

 Dav Drozski RIP Guido.

 Mike Smith RIP

 Steve Moran Very tough news.

 Ellen Christensen So sad.

 Kelly Tellez Godspeed Guido????

 Al Bennett Jr. Not Guido???!?!?

 Nancy Walters Total shock.. he was only 51

 Steven Clark good squint…. dammit

 Maureen DeNunzio Wow. So sad. Thanks for letting us know.

 Steven Clark ouch… had the best 80’s ‘stache…. RIP friend

 Steven Clark he was a cop… was it health or line of duty thing??

 Mark Olsen Condolences to Mike’s family and wide circle of friends. RIP.

 Pete Kennelly From what I can tell it was a health issue with his heart.

 Pete Kennelly I know Al, I was shocked when I read it. Really bumming right now.

 Al Bennett Jr. Man, this a tough one….. I don’t know how to make sense of this. …

 Carl Peoples That is some of the most astonishing news I’ve ever gotten. He was always so light-hearted and full of life. I thank GOD for having known him. Prayers for his family.

 Angel M. Figueroa May he rest in eternal peace.

 Steve Eiser Prayers uplifted to his family. Sad to hear of his passing…

 Lnonya Mbisness RIP Guido. Man, how you were like the king of our dorm!

 Wes Quast RIP Guido, I couldn’t have asked for a better trainer!

 Eric Muntz My condolences to Mike’s family. RIP

 Dan Floyd Sorry to hear that, as I recall he has a heart issue after Desert Storm. Condolences to his family. 

Al Leathers RIP Mike. Salute and Godspeed to the Creator.Kevin Culli Wow – another classmate and fellow PI has passed. I’m sorry to hear this. Mike was a nice guy. RIP, bud… 

Mark Mizner  I could not believe it when I read about Mike Guidara.  He was a great guy to be around as many of the 548th Alumni are.  Always to be fun around especially at the RECCE Socials.


Charles E. “Charlie” Wilson, Sgt, 548 RTS, Yokota AB, Japan, Photo Mapping, November 1951 – February 1954, passed away on November 2, 2014 in Luthersville, Georgia.

    August 30, 1932 – November 2, 2014 

Charlie Wilson has gone West.

He died peacefully in his home November 2 surrounded by his wife and children. He was 82 years old.

Don’t let the small dash between those two dates fool you. He accomplished a great deal between those years on this Earth. The first was marrying his wife, Martha Powell Wilson. They were married 56 years. They would later have two children, Todd and Tara.

Charlie was born in Kansas City, Kansas, to the late George and Carol Wilson. He was in the Navy Reserve but soon joined the Air Force in 1951 and served in the Korean War. Charlie began taking flying lessons in 1955 and never looked back. He was a flight instructor for the Army in Ft. Rucker, Ala., before joining Southern Airways in 1960. He was Captain and flew with Southern Airways until it became Republic Airlines and then Northwest Airlines before retiring as Captain in 1992. He was highly respected amongst his professional peers, and to this day his opinion was sought after by many when it came to airplanes.

Immediately upon retiring, he wasted no time and began attending college and received an Associates Degree in Aviation Mechanics and received his A&P and AI License, which he kept current.

Flying was not his only passion in life. He enjoyed traveling with his family. Many trips to Europe were taken over the years where he enjoyed skiing and exploring the countryside.

Charlie dedicated countless hours to little league sports in Fayette County. He was one of the founders of the Blue Devil Football little league program and coached many softball games on Kiwanis Field. He was involved in every aspect of his children’s and grandchildren’s lives. He never missed a football, a softball, a basketball or a soccer game. He attended many a ballet recital and band concert.

If he wasn’t hunting or camping with his family, he was working on a car or airplane. He was an avid Falcon fan and was a season ticket holder for over 40 years, even attending their appearance in the Super Bowl. He also loved the Georgia Bulldogs and his Atlanta Braves.

He was involved in his church and loved attending UMM club meetings and volunteering with his friends. He was also a member of several aviation groups and actively involved in those: QB’s, Antique Airplane Association, EAA, Cessna 140 Club – just to mention a few.

Charlie is survived by his wife of 56 years, Martha; his son, Todd Wilson and wife Leslie, and their two children, Nicholas 19 and Sydney 15; his daughter Tara and husband Tom Gochenour and their three sons, TJ (18), and twins Charlie and Jack (15). He has a brother, David Wilson, and his wife Carolyn (Oletha, Kansas). He had many nieces and nephews.  

Services will be held at Newnan First United Methodist Church, 33 Greenville St., Newnan, Ga., on Saturday November 8, 2014, at 2 p.m.

Visitation and reception will be in the Parish Hall at Newnan First United Methodist Church immediately following the service from 3:30-5:30 p.m.

Donations may be made to Newnan FUMC.

Mr. Charles Edward Wilson: Newspaper Obituary and Death Notice, Newnan Times-Herald, The (GA) – Thursday, November 6, 2014

Wesley O. “Wes” Williams, TSgt, 548 RTG Photo Lab, April 1977 – April 1979, October 1980 – October 1984 and September 1987 – September 1989, passed away on October 26, 2014 in Fishers, Indiana.

                                March 8, 1957 – Oct. 26, 2014

Wesley O. “Wes” Williams, 57, Fishers, died Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014, at his home following an extended illness.

He was born on March 8, 1957, in Logansport, to Ted and Marie (Wastel) Williams.

He graduated from Lapel High School in 1975 and had served in the U. S. Air Force.

Mr. Williams retired in 2006 from Excel Technical services in Fishers.

He was an active member in Alcoholics Anonymous and an active donor to the Disabled American Veterans. He was also an avid Indianapolis Colts, Indiana Pacers, and Indiana University Hoosiers fan.

He is survived by three children, Chris (wife, Yoryanela) Williams, Carmel, Valerie (husband, Chris) Monday, Indianapolis, and Stephanie Haywood, Columbus, Ind.; two grandchildren, Kaylei and Gavin Monday; his father, Ted Williams, Danville, Va.; and several cousins.

He was preceded in death by his mother; a brother, Kevin Williams; and his son-in-law, Rodger Haywood.

A funeral service will be conducted at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 1, 2014, at Scott E. Hersberger Funeral Home, 1010 N. Main St., Lapel, with visitation beginning at 9 a.m. Burial will follow in Brookside Cemetery, Lapel.

Steve F. LaFata:  Regrets to family, friends and the Recce Tech family

Craig Nipper:  RIP old friend


Armado Villafranca, 548 RTG Special Projects, 1977-1978, passed away on February 17, 2014 in Fort Worth, Texas. 

Armando Villafranca, 56, passed away Wednesday, Oct. 15, 2014. Visitation (only): 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday at Mount Olivet. Armando was born March 25, 1958, in Harlingen to Armando and Teresa Villafranca. He served his country in the U.S. Air Force. Armando was an accomplished journalist for the Houston Chronicle, The Monitor in McAllen, Dallas Times Herald and other newspapers in Texas. He was preceded in death by his father, Armando Villafranca Sr. Survivors: Mother, Teresa Villafranca; sister, Linda Villafranca; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.

Joe Weller:  He worked out on the main floor where Tim Macias and Dan Wark worked but I do believe he like I had some disciplinary issues as we were both continually sewing on and off stripes and did time on weeds and seeds.

Steve Barr: pretty sure he was a registered Communist but kept it secret and if not he certainly was an anarchist at heart…I still have the paperback copy of Che Guevera’s “The Motorcycle Diaries” he gave me along with many Hunter S. Thompson books. One of the most intelligent people I’ve ever met and had a longtime career as a journalist for The Houston Chronicle I do believe and hailed for Arlington, TX and have wondered if his son might be the CBS National correspondent Omar Villafranca as one of his favorite bands was “Omar and the Howlers”  He loved Django Reinhardt’s “gypsy swing music” I tried to keep up with him but he was a shining star kinda character one meets only once in a lifetime and I hated him for being the one to give me the monicker of “Junior”

Kerry McBroom: used to kick his ass all the time with his Suzuki GS380…

Steve Barr: Oh no so sad…he was my bunkie at Lowry and early days at Hickam before be moved offbase. A brother for life. Mando was like a mentor to me in many ways….taught me about literature, good jazz and how mix a dirty martini. RIP “Frank”.  He loved Django Reinhardt’s “gypsy swing music”   I tried to keep up with him but he was a shining star kinda character one meets only once in a lifetime and I hated him for being the one to give me the monicker of “Junior”

Steve Barr:  Oh no so sad…he was my bunkie at Lowry and early days at Hickam before be moved offbase. A brother for life. Mando was like a mentor to me in many ways….taught me about literature, good jazz and how mix a dirty martini. RIP “Frank”

Col (ret) Kenneth B. Orr, 548 RTG Commander, 1977-1978, passed away on February 17, 2014 in Edmond, Oklahoma. 

                                 Colonel Ken Orr, Commander

                                       Col Orr and his Family

Col. Kenneth B. Orr, ret. 
Kenneth Beecher Orr was born in Kingfisher, OK on August 22, 1929, to Hugh M. and Lois D. Orr. He died peacefully following an extended illness in Edmond, OK on February 17, 2014, at age 84. He graduated from Kingfisher High School in 1947, where he lettered in football and basketball. He attended OU, was a member of Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, and graduated in 1952 with a BA in Business. While at OU, he met the love of his life, Janice K. Kerr, of Hooker, OK. They were married on June 6, 1953. In August of 1953 he began his active duty career in the US Air Force. His 27 years in the service included a tour of duty in Vietnam and various significant assignments. During his military career, he earned his MBA from George Washington University. He was the recipient of numerous honors and awards including Bronze Star Medal and Legion of Merit. Ken and Janice raised their 3 children in Texas, California, Kansas, Alabama, Virginia and Hawaii. Colonel Orr retired from military service in 1983 and began a second career in the Aerospace division of General Electric, retiring again a few years later. Ken was a 32nd Degree Mason and devoted member of India Shrine. His passions were golf, hunting, gardening and spending time with family and friends. Ken was involved in many leadership roles including the Election Board, President Of Twin Hills Country Club and his HOA. Also known as “Pops” to the many who loved him, he was a man of honor and integrity in every aspect of his life. He was a devoted husband and father who brought to anything in which he participated the same commitment and integrity. He was preceded in death by his parents, his younger brother Lloyd Orr, his granddaughter Stephanie Rose Wilhelmi, and his niece, Brenda Orr Mergen. Kenneth is survived by his wife of 60 years, Janice K. Orr, daughter Melissa Hoffman and husband Kurt of Monrovia, CA, son John Orr of Tucson, AZ, daughter Kendall Wilhelmi of Amissville, VA, brother and sister-in-law Don and Polly Orr of Fayetteville, NC, sister-in-law Melota Orr of Yukon, OK, grandchildren Taryn, Timothy and Mitchell Hoffman, Kelsey and Keilea Orr, and Marshall Wilhelmi, and many other relatives and friends. Funeral services will be held Saturday, February 22 at 10 a.m. at Baggerley Funeral Home, 930 S. Broadway, Edmond, OK. Interment with Military Honors will be in Memorial Park Cemetery. A luncheon with the family will immediately follow at Baggerley Funeral Home. Kenneth was a proud American veteran. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Disabled American Veterans or Wounded Warrior Project.http://obits.dignitymemorial.com/dignity-memorial/obituary.aspx?n=Kenneth-Orr&lc=7371&pid=169764422&mid=5862381

SMSgt (ret) Robert “Bob” Ventura, IDHS Computer Center and PACAF/INY Staff, 1969 – 1972, passed away on November 8, 2013 in Mililani, Hawaii.

Bob and his wife Letizia at the 2012 548th Reunion Banquet.

 Robert “Bob” Ventura passed away on November 8th.  The Ventura Family is very appreciative of all of the phone calls and emails of support and condolence.  The memorial service in remembrance of Robert “Bob” Ventura will be held at MILILANI MEMORIAL PARK & MORTUARY, WAIPIO – MAUKA CHAPEL on Saturday, November 30, 2013 with receiving beginning at 5:30PM and services beginning at 6:30PM.  The service is open to the public.In lieu of flowers or monetary offerings, the Ventura family humbly requests that a donation be made in Bob’s name to:
AIR FORCE AID SOCIETY   We’ve set up an Active Memorial for SMSgt Robert “Bob” Ventura.  The following link takes you directly to the donation page:    https://www.afas.org/2-ways-to-give/memorial4   (Should the link not take you directly to Bob’s memorial, please go to https://www.afas.org/memorials , select SMSgt Robert “Bob” Ventura under Active Memorials, and make your donation.)ROBERT BOB W. VENTURA Age 75, was born and raised in Wailuku, Maui. After graduation from Baldwin High School, Bob joined the Air Force where he spent a significant portion of his 22-year career in the field of Information Technology. Near the end of the Vietnam War, he was instrumental in standing up the Joint Casualty Resolution Center (now the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command) which is still in operation today. Following his retirement from active duty, Bob worked for several IT companies and eventually formed Ventura Technology in 1991 where he proudly employed over 150 military veterans throughout the years. Bob was also very dedicated to his loving family, he also enjoyed music and being outdoors. The memorial will take place at the Mililani Memorial Park and Mortuary, Mauka Chapel in Waipio on Saturday, November 30 with visitation at 5:30 PM, memorial service at 6:30 PM and remembrance to follow. In lieu of flowers, the Ventura family requests donations to the Air Force Aid Society (afas.org/memorials) in memory of SMSgt Robert “Bob” Ventura. Bob was a Vietnam veteran, a board member for the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association and is survived by his wife, Letizia; his children Luana (McArthur), Robert Jr., and Claudia; sister Clare and two grandchildren. Cynthia and I had dinner with Bob and Letizia last month and we were shocked at the news (still are).   

Randy Johnson sent us an email a day or so after Bob’s passing.  Bob & I were stationed together in Vietnam some 45 years ago and have been friends since, having worked on several intelligence programs together as contractors in the years following our respective retirements from the USAF.  I have since written a letter to Letizia and I plan to be at the memorial on 30 Nov. I hope that Cynthia will accompany me, but she is attending a (church related) meeting in Honolulu at this time and we have not had a chance to talk about it. Anyway, one or both of us will be there for the services. Aloha,

Gil Taylor  Bob lived right down the street from us in Ewa Beach (back in the seventies). He was a real nice guy and a good Intel NCO! I’m sorry he’s no longer with us.

Joe Ford  Thanks, Bill.  Made a donation to AFAS. 

Larry Bemson  I did not really know Bob until the
reunion last year.  Enjoyed some time with him and wished I had known him longer.  Was this an unexpected thing or had he been ill?  Take care.

TSgt (ret) Fred H. Robinson, 548 RTG Lab, 1968-1973, passed away on August 31, 2013 in Chandler Arizona.

Fred Harold Robinson, 81, of Chandler, AZ, beloved husband, proud father and grandfather passed away Saturday, August 31, 2013. 

He was born October 11, 1931, in Hazard, Kentucky, to John Henry and Cora Belle (Hobbs) Robinson, both of whom preceded him in death. He was also preceded in death by his siblings, John, Pauline, Henry, Mary, Eugene and Ellena. Survivors include his wife, Margaret Robinson of Gilbert, AZ; three daughters Charlene Baker(Bruce) of Westminster, CO, Natalie Helm (Herb) of Menifee, CA and Jannelle Robinson of Mesa, AZ; sister, Carolyn Beeler of Hazard, Kentucky and six grandchildren, Chris Redlich, Samantha Baker, Kevin Redlich, Andrew Baker, Michael Baker and David Redlich. He was looking forward to seeing his Great Grandchildren. 

While attending High School in Kentucky he enjoyed playing Basketball. Fred joined the Air Force in 1951, he was stationed at Lowry AFB in Denver, CO. There he met the love of his life Margaret Miller. Throughout his military career Fred served, several tours overseas including 4 tours in Vietnam. He and Margaret enjoyed many transfers with the military and lived in Little Rock, AR, Del Rio, TX, Tucson, AZ, Marysville, CA and Hawaii. He retired from the Air Force after 22 years in 1973 and settled in Aurora, CO. Then he served our country through the Civil Service for the VA and Fitzsimmons Army Medical center until 1993. Fred and Margaret moved to Chandler, AZ in 2002.

Funeral Mass for Mr. Robinson will at Queen of Peace Catholic Church Aurora, CO, September 9th, 2013, at 10:00. Burial at Fort Logan National Cemetery at 12:00. Visitation will be from 4:00 until 6:00 pm at Horan & McConaty 11150 E. Dartmouth Avenue Aurora, CO. 


MSgt (ret) Daryl J Whitney, 548 RTG Library and SSO PACAF, passed away on June 16, 2013 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Daryl J. Whitney June 16, 2013 Daryl J. Whitney, 67, of Aiea, a retired Air Force master sergeant and an Army civilian employee at Fort Shafter, died in Honolulu. He was born in Chicago. He is survived by son Daryl Jr., daughter Liza Whitney-Clipps, brothers James Williams and Jay O. Williams Jr., sister Jolena MacFall and a grandchild. Services: 11 a.m. Friday at Aliamanu Military Reservation Chapel Center, 1085 Bougainville Loop, Building No. 1790.


MSgt (ret) Scott A. Zilm, 548 RTG INOD, 1975-1979, passed away on November 29, 2012 in Spokane, Washington.


Scott (back row) on the first ever 548th golf trip on Kauai in 1978.

ZILM, Scott Alan (Age 63) Passed away November 29, 2012, in Spokane, Washington. Scott was born in Peoria, Illinois, November 19, 1949, to Edwin and Betty Zilm. He spent 20 years in the Air Force. After retirement he worked at Pitney-Bowes in Spokane. Scott was an avid golfer. Scott is preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife of 40 years, Pam; sons Scott Michael Zilm (Scott Kemp) of Chicago, and Paul Zilm of Spokane; granddaughter Madelyn Emma; siblings John Zilm of Springfield, Missouri and Rebecca Anderson of Pontiac, Illinois; and several nieces and nephews. An Honor Ceremony will be held on Monday, December 3, 2012, 3:00 PM at Washington State Veterans Cemetery, 21702 W. Espanola Rd., Medical Lake. Memorial contributions can be sent to Wounded Warrior Project. Community Cremation Service Spokane Valley 13127 E. Sprague, Spokane Valley, WA 99216 509-926-2020 On-line guestbook at: www.CommunityCremationService.com

May he rest in peace................ Joe Longo

CMSgt (ret) Tom Haga, 548 RTG Photo Lab, January 1980 – July 1991, passed away on October 10, 2012 in Grand Forks, North Dakota. 

Col Grant and Chief Haga using backup communications 

                          Tom is buried next to his daughter Lynn

October 19, 1937 – October 10, 2012

Thomas Lars Haga was born Oct. 19, 1937, in Valley City, N.D., the son of Lars and Eleanore (Eide) Haga. 
He was raised and educated in Valley City and graduated from high school there in 1955. He enlisted in the U. S. Air Force and served in several places in the continental United States as well as in Hawaii. He also served in locations overseas including France and England and two tours of duty in Vietnam. After 30 years, he retired from the Air Force as a Chief Master Sergeant. 
Tom was a life member of the Valley City Veterans of Foreign Wars. He was also a member of the Grand Forks Disabled American Veterans Andy Nomland Chapter #2, the American Legion and the Eagles. 
Survivors include his son, Michael (Carolyn) Thomas Haga, Lenexa, Kansas; daughter, Lorri Anne Savoie, Grand Forks; brother, Charles “Chuck” Haga, Grand Forks; sister, Carolyn Hunt, Grand Forks, and grandchildren, Molly Lynn Haga, Kylie Dawn Haga and Elizabeth “Lizzie” Marie Haga. 

Tom is preceded in death by his daughter, Lynn Marie Haga, his parents and a brother, Gerald Haga. 

Funeral Services will be 2:00 PM Monday, October 15, 2012 in Amundson Funeral Home of Grand Forks, ND. 

Visitation will be for the hour before the service in the funeral home. 
Buiral will be in Memorial Park Cemetery of Grand Forks. 

Chief was an outstanding Senior NCO and a friend to all who knew him.  Bill Forsyth

I attended the service for Tom, the flowers were special, KUDOS to the 548th Association.  I’ll miss Tom—Lynn Wilhelm

God Bless Chief Tom Haga. I mourn deeply at the news of his passing. He was as fine a person and leader as I have ever met. Rest in peace dear friend. You gave an extra sparkle to the lives of all who met you along the way. We’ll meet again in God’s good time. // Jim Grant

Tom Haga was a very special man and leader. 

I had the great honor and pleasure to serve with him at the 548th Reconnaissance Technical Group in Hawaii for a number of years in the early 1980s. Tom combined a strong sense of patriotism with the ability to get the most out of everyone he met, whether or not they were above or below him in the chain of command. He kept our photo lab running at peak performance, earning high marks in every annual inspection. Equally important, he had more to do than anyone else in making the 548th a family, with his constant efforts to support social events, athletic encounters, and just plain fun. 

He had time for everybody and he had a way of getting folks to see his point of view and do things his way without generating resentment or friction. Tom was not driven by ego or a need to demonstrate personal control; his actions were fed by a belief that we had one team that had to help each other do the right things the right way. 

I learned a great deal from Tom, and I will be eternally grateful for his friendship and support as well as for the joy he brought to all of us with his shenanigans in Hawaii. 

Rest well, dear friend. We will see you again.

Jim Grant
Brigadier General, USAF (ret.)

Yes, a fine person he was.  I went to see him last Sun/Mon.  I’m glad I got to see him—Lynn Wilhelm.

Chief Haga bless you and may Gods arms warm you in his everlasting kingdom.  Ben Gomes

I was saddened by news of Chief Haga passing. To this day, every time I drink a beer and eat a hot dog he and the times we shared at dog and suds comes to mind. I imagine the memories will still return but now will be accompanied with a bit of sadness. RIP Chief – you met a lot to so many.  Jim Spencer

The CHIEF. None better, to sit with at a ballgame (even if the lowly Islanders) and quaff a beer or two with. OR, ride hap-hazardly about the gof course…doing the same!  
We will miss you, Chief…rest in peace, and God Bless your family!  Mike Gross

Knew Jimmy, he was my supervisor in the old days at the 548th and knew Tom a good man. They were the Good Guys.  Daryl Whitney

RIP Chief  John KephaOur prayers to Tom’s family.  Elton Stokes

Remember seeing 2 of us North Dakotans listed on the 548th membership roster, but didn’t know how to research to find out who the “other” Dakotan was.  Now I know.   His brother, Chuck, was a writer for the local newspaper (The Herald) in Grand Forks when I was living there and coaching for 11 years.  I never knew Thomas, as I was at the Recce 1970 to 73.  Even though I didn’t know Thomas, please give my condolences to his family, and maybe mention to Chuck that I had served where his brother eventually served.  Chuck may remember me from my hockey coaching at Red River High School in Grand Forks.  Jay Johnson

I worked with Chief for a lot of years. Even ran some 10K’s with him and Chief Greathouse. Almost did not recoginize him with the beard.  Mark Mizner

RIP Chief  Robert Ackerman

Tom was a great guy. As a USAF Chief Master Sergeant he was an outstanding leader. He will be missed.  Joe FordChief. You will be missed. As a young airmen/nco I was extremely lucky to have served with you. You were an excellent role model. I will always remember our running days. You always inspired me with your perseverance on our Tripler hospital runs on the weekends. Our runs on the big island. Your reference to the airline to be careful with your farm fresh eggs (codeword for a suitcase full of beer). Chief I’ll never be able repay your kindness you shared with me, but I will I pass it on.  Nick Scohera Aka beakerI never met a kinder man-we called him the ‘gentle giant’. I will miss him and his infectious laugh! My thoughts and prayers to the family.  Nancy Sather

Tom Haga was the epitome of what the Air Force Senior NCO was expected to be. He was my mentor, my friend, and the greatest influence of my military career. A true human being who will be greatly missed. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.  Craig Sweet

Chief was always there for us Sergeants. Whether a helping hand at work, a beer on the golf course or a cheer from the stands at our games…he was befitting of what Top 3 meant to us then.  I remember Top McGough always talking about what he’d get Chief when he retired…a gun for shooting birds in the Dakota’s. I’m sure you put down quite a few, Chief, cause I know Top wasn’t cheap with his monies.  God Bless you, Chief. We will miss you…and anticipate, someday, seeing you again.  Mike Gross

I had the privilege and honor of serving with Chief Haga at both the 544 TMS and 548th RTU, he was probably the finest NCO I ever had the privilege of serving with, and I was proud to have him as a friend. R.I.P. Chief.  Jon Parmer

SMSgt (ret) Jimmy Rogers, 548 RTG Exploitation, Special Projects, Plans and Programs, February 1974 – June 1981, passed away on September 23, 2012 in Pecos, Texas. 

Jimmy’s promotion to MSgt April 1974, with the late Col Duane Vandenberg 

Jimmy Leon Rogers
October 25, 1942 – September 23, 2012

Jimmy Leon Rogers, 69, of Texas passed away from this life on Sunday, September 23, 2012. He was born October 25, 1942 in Pecos, TX to Leon Claud and Helen Marie (Williams) Routon. Jimmy retired from the United States Air Force. He was a computer systems analyst.

Those left to cherish his memory are his mother, Helen Marie Jones; two sons, David Alan Rogers of Clackamas, OR and Dale Wade Rogers and wife Larisa of Flagler, CO; one sister, Joy Harrison of Phoenix, AZ; two grandchildren, Amanda and Jordan Rogers; and one great grandchild, Mio Ridder. 

Jimmy was preceded in death by his father. 

At Jimmy’s request, no formal services are scheduled.

I have scheduled for my Fathers remains to be interred at the National Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl) columbarium on Tuesday April 16th at 10:30AM. Military honors are requested. Dale and I will be traveling to Oahu and plan to be on the island from the 14th through the 20th. No formal or religious services are scheduled. Family and Friends are invited to attend. Individual statements in remembrance/honor of him will be welcomed.Best Regards
Dave Rogers   

Very sad. He was a great guy…. Jim Grant

Msgt Rogers was a real asset to the 548th RTG and a friend to me.   Howard Melching

Jimmy was both my boss and close friend.  I have many good memories of sitting around his house and talking, he lived just down the street from me.  We had good times on a TDY/Leave to Korea were we went to a orphanage, sat down and talked with the former President  (1960-1962) of Korea, Yun Bo Sun, at his 100 year old mansion, arranged by the couple who ran the orphanage, who were friends of my mother-in-law, after I helped them in Hawaii; a picnic in the mountains arranged by my sister-in-law where Jimmy mistook one of the richest ladies in Korea for his date, and “classified” missions in Seoul and Taegu.  One weekend at a Bellows cabin I had to pull his sleeping body out of the surf after too many Taquila Sunrises, no small feat.  Bill Forsyth

   Jimmy will be deeply missed by all who knew him. He was one of the most brilliant analysts that I ever had to pleasure of knowing and working with.   The last time I talked to him was to make sure he was going to be attending the reunion – he told me that he was not doing well and that he would not be attending.   We spent several years working together at PACAF, the 548RTG, Planning Research Corporation on CONSTANT WATCH, the development of the KCOIC systems in Korea, and the systems support at the IPAC/JICPAC/JIOC with Martin Marietta.   He was a close friend of myself and my family and we spent many happy hours with his family as well. My children will be sad to hear the news as well. Bob Ventura

I knew Jimmy Rogers very well, but had lost track of him. He worked for me 45 year ago at the 67th RTS. He was a good man; a hard worker and fun to be around. I’m so sorry to learn of his passing. I signed the guestbook, including similar words in the text therein.  Gil Taylor

I’ll be thinking of Jimmy and all of our 548 RTG brothers and sisters who are no longer with us. God bless all of you, and your families, and thank you so much for your service to our country. Joe Weller

Jimmy was a special manager for me..There wasn’t a project he couldn’t support, with minimum guidance. The projects were error free. Perhaps the best part, there no static . He could do everything…I Repected his abilities and friendship..   Phil Desjardins

Please convey my apologies to Jimmy’s family. I would have been glad to attend but I have commitments which I cannot get out of on that day. I have fond memories of the years that Jimmy worked for me at the 67th in the late 1960’s.  Gil Taylor

So sad to learn of Jimmy Roger’s passing. He was such a good guy.  Pat Miller

Jimmy’s interment at Punchbowl April 16th, 2013, L-R his sons Dave and Dale, Dale’s wife Lori and his mother-in-law Pat, back row, Bob Ventura and his wife Letizia, taking photos, Bill Forsyth.

Capt (ret) Randy Eyler, Sgt, 548 RTG Exploitation and Special Projects, May 1974 – May 1975, when he went to OTS, passed away on May 1, 2012 in Woodbridge, Virginia. 

Randy receiving Airmen of the Year from the late 
Col Duane Vandenberg

Randy Christopher Eyler Sr. February 3, 1953 – May 1, 2012 The world will miss you, Randy! Survivors: Amazing husband to wife Annell Bridget Finan Eyler; loving father to Joyce Catalano, Joe Catalano, Renee and Van Culver, Randy and Stacy; fun-loving grandfather to Seth, Hayden, Tori, Kenzie, Kai and forthcoming grandchild; beloved brother of Michael, Suzy and Patti; brother-in-law to Gene, Linda and Bill Finan; and dear family friends Val Rans, Joanne Hackett and Allan Baker; jokester uncle to Michael and Kelli Eyler; Lisa and David Wenerd; Geno, Sean, Josh, Julie, and Megan Finan; and their families. Adventurous child of the late Rita M. and Robert L. Eyler. Loyally served his country for over 40 years, with 24 as an officer in the USAF. World-wide explorer and beachcomber. A computer miracle worker who loved to read, enjoyed Rodney Strong Cabernet and relished sitting on the deck drinking morning coffee and sharing time and stories with his family and friends. The master investigator finally knows all!
Published in The Daily Times on May 4, 2012

Col (ret) Paul A. FitzGerald, 548 RTG Commander, passed away on February 14, 2012 in Berkeley, California.  No obituary was found.

              Col. FitzGerald awarding Airman of the Quarter to 
              Doug Schlappi sometime in 1972. 

Dear Bill,
Thanks for your letter and I’m glad that the 548th has a website and a Webmaster. I can report that my father was Col Paul A FitzGerald and my family all remember Hickam very well. He passed away Feb 14, 2012 after a short illness. His bedroom walls are still decorated with plaques and poems given to him by the 548th ‘Top 3.’ He is interred with my mother in Golden Gate National Cemetery. After Hickam, he was stationed at Travis for 6 mos and then lived in Berkeley, CA (of all places) until last year. He was in intelligence beginning in 1963-64. He loved the ‘Reccie Techs.’

Thanks Gordon FitzGerald

    I know I’ve told this story before, but when my wife and I, both on active duty, arrived at Hickam in September of 1971, Colonel Fitzgerald was the Commanding Officer of the 548th. My wife worked in the motor pool, but the same shift. We lived in Makiki Heights. Shortly after Thanksgiving her shift was moved to 4:00PM to midnight. That meant we needed two cars. With an E-3 and E-4’s salary, we could not afford that luxury. At the Christmas Party I approached a Brigadier General, who I believe preceded Colonel Fitzgerald as the 548th’s CO, and asked if he could help me out and told him of our plight. The party was on a Friday afternoon. Monday morning my wife received orders transferring her to the 548th as one of Colonel Fitzgerald’s Administrative Assistants. I bounced back and forth between the 548th and the 480th at TAC HQ, but Colonel Fitzgerald is the only CO I ever had who made a lasting impression. 
Christopher Allan Knowles
Former Staff Sergeant, USAF

He was well liked. 
Doug Schlappi

Col Fitzgerald was the Commander of the 548th when I was in the USAF.   My memories were that he was a fine and reasonable person.Former Photo Interpreter, Sam Walker, F.P.I.

I was very sorry to hear of Col. FitsGerald’s passing. He was the commander of the 548 for the later part of my time at Hickam (out in late July ’73). He was a good man. I’ll always remember when the first POW’s landed at the Hickam MAC terminal in the wee hours of the morning. Col. F. let it be known that any non-essential personnel on duty or those not actively working a mission, were to be allowed to go to the MAC terminal to witness and greet the returning soldiers. It is an event that I will always remember from my time at the 548th. May he rest in peace.
Jay Johnson

Col (ret) Duane E. Vandenberg, 548 RTG Commander, June ’73 – June ’77, passed away on December 22, 2011, in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Colonel Vandenberg at the 2010 548th Reunion

Duane E. VandenbergDuane Evert Vandenberg, 81, of Hot Springs, passed away on Thursday, Dec. 22, 2011, at National Park Medical Center.

He was born Nov. 12, 1930, in Scottsbluff, Neb., to Nielson Evert and Pearl Wayman Vandenberg. He was reared in Houston, Texas, and graduated from John H. Reagan High School in 1948, lettering and excelling in JROTC. He is a 1952 graduate of Texas A&M University, where he served in the Corps of Cadets and the prestigious Ross Volunteers – the Texas Governor’s Honor Guard. In his senior year, he married his high school sweetheart, Peggy Joyce Ward. 

Following graduation, he was commissioned a 2nd lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force. During his career, he was stationed in Texas, Georgia, Alabama, California, Japan, Missouri, Arkansas, Hawaii, Virginia, Germany and Florida. He retired as a senior colonel after 31 years of service. In the course of his career, he served in the Vietnam War as a navigator on RF-4C reconnaissance aircraft. He was awarded one of his two Distinguished Flying Crosses during a sortie, when his aircraft was hit by a surface-to-air missile, piercing a wing and destroying flight controls. Despite the damage to the aircraft, he was able to complete the mission and return the crew safely to base. Later in his career, he served as Chief of Air Force Intelligence at Central Command at MacDill AFB, Florida. 

He retired to Arkansas in 1989 to be close to his family. He was active in Rotary International as a Paul Harris Fellow, the Air Force Association, the VFW, Toastmasters, the Former Students Association of Texas A&M, the Lions Club, Sons of the American Revolution, the Mayflower Society, and the Holland Society of New York. He and his wife, Peggy, enjoyed traveling and spending time with family and friends, especially those at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. 

He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Peggy; daughter, Linda Kay White, and her husband, Newton, of Hot Springs; daughter, Rene’ Starr, and her husband, Joe, of Little Rock; a son, Dr. David Duane Vandenberg, of Hot Springs; and a son, CDR James Nielson Vandenberg, of Arlington, Va., and Little Rock, and his wife, Diane S. Vandenberg. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Emily Chase White (predeceased), John Gabriel Starr, Matthew Cooper White, Matthew Killian Vandenberg, Kathryn Grace Starr, and Emelie Adeline Vandenberg. He is also survived by a brother-in-law, Merle (Buck) Ward and his wife, Lynda, of Conroe, Texas; sister-in-law, Julia Ward, of Rolla, Mo.; and four nephews, James (Skip) Ward, of Houston, Texas, Larry Ward, of Wexford, Pa., Bill Ward, of Tulsa, Okla., Major David Ward, of Fort Riley, Kan. 

A memorial service will be held at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 228 Spring St., Hot Springs, on Wednesday at 11 a.m., officiated by the Rev. CB Baker. A U.S. Air Force fly-over will be held around noon over Hot Springs to mark Col. Vandenberg’s service and devotion to his country. 

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, P.O. Box 1117, Hot Springs, AR 71902 or your favorite charity. 

Maj (ret) Donald C. Huntley Jr., Capt 548 RTG, HQ SQ Commander, passed away on 17 November 2010 in Vero Beach, Florida.

  12 February 1952 – 17 November 2010 

Major (ret) Donald C. Huntley Jr. at Military Ball in 2010 with ROTC cadets Darion Jackson and Brittney Casalina (Photo courtesy of In Loving Memory Of Major Donald C Huntley Jr. Facebook page, Brittney Casalina) 

Capt Huntley with his Pittsburg Steeler hat and cigarette,  Penny Gray and Ildrid Bates in background, unknown date (Photo provided by Bobby Gray on 548 RTG Facebook page)

HUNTLEY DONALD C., JR., MAJOR Age 58, died unexpectedly in his home in Vero Beach, FL on Wednesday, November 17, 2010. Son of Donald G. Huntley, Sr. and Macaria Lee Huntley. Survived by his brothers Richard E. Huntley and David M. Huntley. Father of Donald C. Huntley III, Mark Huntley and stepdaughter Sara Schmitt. Donald grew up in the Overbrook section of Pittsburgh and graduated from Carrick High School in 1969. He received an undergraduate degree from Alderson Broaddus College, a masters degree in International Relations from the University of Southern Mississippi and a masters degree in Public Administration from the Oklahoma State University. He enlisted in the Air Force in 1978 and retired after 20 years of service with the rank of Major after receiving numerous metals and citations. Major Huntley previously served as an ROTC Instructor at Johnstown Votec High School in Johnstown, PA and most recently served as an ROTC Instructor at Vero Beach High School. Friends will be received at the JOHN F. SLATER FUNERAL HOME, INC., (412) 881-4100, 4201 Brownsville Rd., Brentwood 15227, Monday and Tuesday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Funeral Prayer on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. Mass of Christian Burial in St. Winifred Church at 10:30 a.m. In lieu of flowers, family suggests contributions to “Major Donald C. Huntley, Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund,” scholarships will be made available to graduation Air Force JROTC cadets. Checks should be made to “VBHS” with “Major Huntley” on the memo line. Checks can be mailed to Vero Beach High School, 1707 16th Street, Vero Beach, FL 32960.      Pittsburg Post-Gazette

The Major is buried at the National Cemetery of the Alleghenies, Bridgeville, PA

My condolences go out to your Ohana (Family). As everyone joked, you were Big Don and I was Little Don. You were like my Big Brother. We met while we were both station in Korea and then you followed me to Hawaii. You were always there for me and my family. We are going to deeply miss you. We will meet again, my good friend. Aloha!!!  
Don Marshall
[email protected]

OMG, I can’t believe it…what a shame, so sad. I looked for him on the internet around 2005 but couldn’t find him. I wanted to thank him for all the positive encouragement he gave me at the start of my AF career. He believed in ppl. Capt Huntley used to come to Chem Mix to check on us all who were waiting for our security clearances prior to working in the photo lab downstairs. I was waiting darn near 6 months, so I got a chance to talk with him candidly many times. He shot from the hip, didn’t play games, was tactful and chose his words carefully (at least with me) and made observations and comments that would make u think. I’m sure he’s gonna be missed by us all!  
Steve Krywany

I’m truly sorry to learn of his passing. Capt Huntley changed the course of my life, and I’ll always be thankful for this. I was a sailor assigned to the Training department from FICPAC, and when checking in to the 548th, he told me he wouldn’t sign my check-in sheet until I spoke to the base Education office about going to college, which had never crossed my mind. The Navy and AF have far differing views about the need for education.   I took his direction, signed up for classes, and graduated with a bachelors degree in 1989. This enabled me to make Chief in 11 years, and allowed me to take civilian jobs I would have never been qualified for.   I am forever in his debt, and always appreciated his concern for me. 
Andy Nieto

This is very sad to hear.
Janice Cannon

Arthur David Stackhouse,, SSgt 548 RTG, fall 1968 – fall 1972, passed away on 29 March 2010 in Xenia, Ohio after battling Lymphoma.  

20 May 1947 – 29 March 2010

Arthur David Stackhouse STACKHOUSE, Arthur David, 62, of Xenia, went home to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Monday, March 29, 2010 at The Hospice of Dayton. He is preceded in death by his parents, Nelson and Monta Stackhouse.  Art is survived by his wife of 43 years, Reneé; their three children: David, Nathan (wife, Gudmunda) and Lisa (husband, Chris) Niemiec; four grandchildren; his sister Nelsene Rathburn and brother Allen.  Art was a 1965 graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School at the former Ohio Soldier’s and Sailor’s Orphan’s Home in Xenia, Ohio, where he participated in Junior ROTC, attended Buckeye Boys State and was senior class president. He served in the United States Air Force from 1968-1972. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Wright State University in 1980. Known as Xenia’s ‘Marathon Man,’ he ran an average of over one hundred miles per month for nearly a decade while completing seven marathons. His commitment to family, quick wit and willingness to share the Gospel will be remembered by all who knew him. Well done, good and faithful servant. You fought the good fight, finished the course and kept the faith. Funeral services will be held 10 a.m. Saturday, April 3, 2010 at Newcomer Funeral Home, 3380 Dayton-Xenia Road. Family will receive friends from 5 to 8 p.m., Friday, April 2, 2010 at the funeral home. Burial will follow services at Massie Creek Cemetery, Cedarville, Ohio.  In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Hospice of Dayton or the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. To send a special message to the family, please visit http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/artstackhouse.
Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Ohio, USA – 30 Mar 2010

Arthur David Stackhouse was a success story, grew up in an orphanage in Xenia, Ohio and joined USAF out of the orphanage and made a name for himself.  It seems he worked briefing air crew members at Hickam.  Anyway, great guy and we spent time when he was really sick with lots of discussion about time at the orphanage.  His son graduated from the Air Force Academy and returned there as an instructor.  
Sandy Epperson

Duane Hall, SSgt, Who served with the 548 RTS 1950-1951, passed away on February 28, 2010 in Vernal, Utah. 


Duane Hall was born in Vernal, Utah, on December 8, 1930 to Emmett Alfred Hall and Irene Frances Wilcoxson Hall, the third of seven children. 

Duane attended school at both Central and Maeser Elementaries. Duane, his twin brother Wayne, and Holt Wardle started the wrestling program in 1946 at Uintah High School. He graduated in 1948 from Uintah High.

After graduating from high school, Duane enlisted in the United States Air Force. He served four years, two years of that time in Korea. 

Upon returning from military service, he married his high school sweetheart, Merlene McNeill, on November 1, 1952. Later on April 4, 1966 they were sealed in the Salt Lake Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They have four children.

Duane and Merlene owned Duane Hall Trucking for 17 years. They had a large fleet of water trucks servicing oil companies in Utah, Wyoming, Nevada, Idaho, California, and Colorado.

Duane started the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5560 in 1989 in Vernal. He planned and designed the Veteran War Memorial on the Uintah County Building lawn. Duane, along with Bob Williams, brought the helicopter near the memorial. He served as the Commander of the VFW Post for 19 years. In September 2009, for health reasons, he resigned.

Duane loved playing his guitar with his daughter, Sharlene, and his friends. He played and sang at many community programs and funerals.

Duane is a member of the LDS Church. He held several callings. He did much good both public and private when he served as Elders Quorum President. He served on the Uintah County Care Center Board for several years. He was a member of the Vernal Roping Club when it was started in 1953. He also served on the Selective Service Board.

Duane loved the American flag and all it symbolized. He gave many flags away. He enjoyed talking to anyone who had been in the service of our country. Duane wrote and published a book on his years serving our country in the Korean War. He was passionately devoted to his family, grandchildren and great grandchildren and it was his joy to have them come around.

Duane was preceded in death by his parents and siblings, Wayne & his wife Jackie, Weldon, Dennis, and Kathryn.

He is survived by his wife, Merlene Hall; and children, Clark D. (Beverly) Hall of Vernal; Stacy (Cathy) Hall of Provo; Sharlene (Sam) Howard of Vernal; and Lt. Col. Mitchell (Faye) Hall of Lake Point, Utah. He had 13 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

He is also survived by siblings Gratton (Betty) Hall, sister-in-law Margie Hall, brother-in-law Kent Jackson, Buck (Glena) Hall, Bill (Jolene) Carter, Gaytha (Maury) Morningstar, and many nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, March 4, at the Vernal 6th Ward Chapel, 850 West 100 North, at 11 a.m. There will be a viewing Wednesday, March 3, in the Relief Society Room at the church from 6 to 8:00 pm and one hour prior to services in the same place.

Arrangements by Blackburn Vernal Mortuary. Compassionate services by Vernal 6th Ward Relief Society. 


Rock Point Cemetery 
Uintah County
Utah, USA



From back cover of book

The book written by Duane and Ben Hardy:

Photographic Aerial Reconaissance and Interpretation Korea, 1950-52, Ben Hardy and Duane Hall 
From Korean War Project (KWP) member Ben Hardy this book is 124 pages with many illustrations and documents.

Hardy and Hall have put together a record of their very personal experiences while stationed
in the Far East Air Forces during the early stages of the war, with well over 100 photographic and document illustrations. Missions were flown by un-armed planes piloted by dedicated aircrew. Supported on the ground by the flight line crews and the technical staff of the photographic and operations staff.
From Ted Barker: As a former “PI” and “OPS Intel” type, this book strikes a personal chord.

Delbert L. Gaylord, 548 RTG,  circa 1968, SSgt, Air Targets Material Compilation, passed away on January 16, 2010, in Hyannis, Massachusetts. 

                                  18 July 1941 – 16 January 2010   

                                           He loved to dance

HYANNIS — Delbert L. Gaylord died peacefully Jan. 16, 2010, at Cape Cod Hospital after a brief illness.

Born in Worcester where he attended school and served for many years in the Air Force, Delbert worked for many years at Worcester City Hall and Worcester Vocational Tech, and lastly at Sears in Hyannis.

Delbert had a tremendous love for his family and friends. He was an avid lover of books and a Red Sox fan.

Delbert is predeceased by Marjorie L. (Gaylord) Hampton and stepfather Haywood A. Hampton. He is survived by a brother, Robert E. Gaylord of Hyannis; sisters-in-law Helen M. Gaylord and Elizabeth James of Hyannis; nephews Robert E. Jr. and Scott A. Gaylord of Hyannis; a niece, Nellie Lynne (Gaylord) McDowell of Hyannis; and a host of cousins, nieces and nephews.

Visiting hours are from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, at the Calvary Baptist Church, 25 Lincoln Road, Hyannis. The funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 23, at the same location. Burial is private. A memorial service will be held in Worcester at a later date.

LtCol (ret) Thomas E. Angle, 548 RTG Deputy Commander for Support, passed away on December 31, 2009 from cancer in Papillion, Nebraska. 

Angle, Thomas E.  Age 57 Preceded in death by parents, William and J. Patricia Angle. He was beloved husband and father to wife, Jennie and daughter, Patricia.  SERVICES Tues., 11am at First Christian Church, 6630 Dodge St. Interment Cedar Dale Cemetery following luncheon. VISITATION Mon., 6-8pm at the 72nd Street Chapel. Memorials to First Heritage Fund at First Christian Church or American Cancer Society . JOHN A. GENTLEMAN MORTUARIES
1010 North 72nd St., 391-1664
Published in Omaha World-Herald from January 1 to January 4, 2010

SMSgt (ret) William “Willie” Flavin, 548 RTG Library, passed away on November 7, 2009 in The Villages, Florida

Col Benson, with his Diet Pepsi and cigarette,
                     talking to Willie Flavin
         August 24, 1946 – November 7, 2009

William Flavin 

THE VILLAGES — William Eugene (Bill) Flavin, 63, died Saturday, Nov. 7, 2009.

     Mr. Flavin was born in Kansas City, Mo., and moved to The Villages in 2005. He was retired from the U.S. Department of Defense, Department of the Army; was an Air Force veteran; an avid reader; enjoyed golf, computers; and had been active in various organizations.  
     Survivors include his sisters, Connie Ising, Kansas City, Mary Flavin, The Villages; and brother, John, Ridgefield, Conn.
     Visitation will be 5:30-7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 11, at McGilley State Line Chapel, Kansas City, with the Rosary at 5 p.m. Mass of Christian burial will be at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 12, at St. Catherine of Siena Church, Kansas City.
     Memorial contributions may be sent to Operation Shoebox, 920 Camino Del Rey, The Villages, FL 32159 or to Cornerstone Hospice, 601 Casa Bella, The Villages, FL 32162.  McGilley State Line, Kansas City, is in charge of arrangements.

The Villages Daily Sun
Saint Catherine of Siena Church Cemetery
Kansas City
Jackson County
Missouri, USA

Maj (ret) Hunter “Butch” Harris III, 548 RTG HQ Squadron Commander, passed away on June 25, 2009 in Angeles City, Philippines. 

   Maj Butch Harris is buried beside his dad at Punchbowl Cemetery
                                        June 9, 1942 – June 25, 2009

Major Hunter “Butch” Harris III, 67, formerly of Hawai’i, died June 25, 2009. A Punahou class of 1960 graduate; retired from the U.S. Air Force. Survived by son, Antonio; cousins. Service held at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. 
Honolulu Advertiser 


SCPO (ret) Bobby Kent “BK” Hubbard, 548 RTG Research and Analysis Division, passed away on March 28, 2009 in Pattaya, Thailand.

April 27, 1937 – March 28, 2009

      VFW Post 9876, Pattaya, Thailand

May 12, 2010, Joe Weller provided the following information on BK’s passing:  Just found out that SCPO Bobby K. Hubbard passed away on March 28, 2009.  When I at the RTG in 76-79 he was running the Daily Briefing team (we were actually part of IPAC but didn’t go to Camp HM Smith till summer of 1979) that included Capt Jeff Floyd, Ron Muell, Dean Johnson, me and Joe House.  This msg was on a Navy site:  I just found out today the very sad news of ISCS Bobby K. Hubbard’s passing on 28 March 2009, of a massive heart attack in Pattaya Beach, Thailand. He was the very first SCPO that I worked for when I was on the USS Midway from 1980-1982. A true “Old School” CPO. He was a legend in the Intelligence Community and an even bigger legend (at times) in the liberty community…LOL He was a true leader and mentor. He retired from the Navy in 1986 after a 30 year career and was working as a civilian at Yokota AFB in Japan the last time I saw him in 1990. He eventually retired from that job and was living inAngeles City, P.I. and affiliated with the local VFW there. He then moved to Thailand where he was affiliated with the local VFW in Pattaya Beach. I was one of the many Intelligence Specialists to be “B.K. Hubbard Trained” and turned out the better for it. I will add that it was a lot of fun becoming “B.K. Hubbard Trained” while on liberty throughout SE Asia… LOL RIP Hub you will be missed.
Sad news, BK was a piece of work and I know we drove him nuts, Joe

Donald R. Gump, Sgt 548 RTG, passed away on November 22, 2008 in Efland, North Carolina.

Charles “Chip” Stewart, TSgt, 548 RTG Photo Lab, 1987-1991 (aprox), passed away on August 22, 2008 in Hemet, California.

Chip and his daughter Erin
Charles Edward (Chip) Stewart went home to his heavenly Father on August 22, 2008. Chip will be sorely missed but we’ll rejoice with him later. He was born at Cherry Point, N.C. on Feb. 6, 1959. He graduated from Orange, CA High School, where he was active in the drama dept. and sang with a barbershop quartet. He met his beautiful wife to be while there. They married at Chapman College Chapel, Sept. 1979. He served his country for 14 years in the U.S. Air Force, part of the time in Germany. He and his wife Janet had their daughter Erin Kelsy while there. Their son Dillon was born in March at Vandenberg Air Force Base, he’s 16 years old. after leaving the Air Force, he worked for Jungle Rags as an artist and a designer of children’s clothing. He worked for Mattel Toy Co. as an artist and a designer of toys. He also was employed by Screenlife Video Game Company of Seattle, WA, as an Artist and Game Designer. Survivors are his wife, Janet Carlson Stewart; daughter, Erin and husband Andy Carlson; his son Dillon; mother and father, Georgia and Olney Stewart; brothers, James of Santa Ana, and Andrew of Lancaster; 3 aunts and 1 uncle in Arkansas, aunt and uncle in Sun City, AZ, and many cousins. He was preceded in death by his brother, John. During the time he lived in Hemet, he and Janet were active in scouting with a troop at Winchester. A memorial will be held at 711 Bahama Dr., in Hemet, at 2PM, Saturday, September 6th.  Published in Press-Enterprise on Sept. 4, 2008

Connie Calvin:  I remember a fellow photo lab airman named Charles “Chip” Stewart who designed the t-shirts for two of our 548th RTG relay races.  I ran across an obituary that may be him, but I haven’t confirmed that this is indeed Chip Stewart.  I remember really enjoying talking with him…he was so very talented, creative and funny. I’m glad to know he got to do more with his art and hope it brought him joy.  (Note:  Bill Forsyth was able to locate his daughter Erin and confirmed this was the right Chip Stewart.)

 CMSgt (ret) Paul J. Kehoe, 548 RTG Exploitation, passed away on March 4, 2007 in Pinellas Park, Florida.  

November 5, 1934 – March 4, 2007

KEHOE, Paul J., Ret. Chief Master Sgt. USAF, of Pinellas Park, died Sunday, March 4, 2007 at Bay Pines VA Hospital in Bay Pines, FL. He was born in Gorham, New Hampshire and moved to area from Nebraska in 1978. He served in the US Air Force for over 26 years, receiving a Bronze Star. He worked for Martel Labs for ten years in St. Petersburg as a photo interpreter. He enjoyed golfing and coin & stamp collecting. He is survived by his sons, Mike, of Valrico and Steve, of Huntington Beach, CA; his daughter, Laura Hagan, of Ann Arbor, MI; his brother, Bill Kehoe, of Virginia; his sisters, Anne Berquist, of New Hampshire & Janet Roy, of New Hampshire and six grandchildren


Benson “Ben” Hardy, Captain (Although inurnment says SSGT) , who served in the 548 RTS from 1950 – 1951, passed away on May 9, 2006, in Santee, California.

November 22, 1920 – May 9, 2006

Hardy and Hall have put together a record of their very personal experiences while stationed in the Far East Air Forces during the early stages of the war, with well over 100 photographic and document illustrations.  Missions were flown by un-armed planes piloted by dedicated aircrew. Supported on the ground by the flight line crews and the technical staff of the photographic and operations staff.
From Ted Barker: As a former “PI” and “OPS Intel” type, this book strikes a personal chord.

Jerry Lewis, SSgt 548 RTG Exploitation and Special Projects, passed away on April 17, 2006 in Lorain, Ohio.  
 Jerry Lewis has  two headstones, he was in the Air Force for 11 years


Jerry Lewis

Published: Thursday, April 20, 2006
Morning Journal

He was born Sept. 2, 1952, in Meridian, Mississippi.

He graduated from Admiral King High School in 1971 and was a staff sergeant in the U.S. Air Force.

He was working for the Lorain City Schools as a substitute teacher and track coach and was previously employed at Shelby in Westlake, the Lorain Ford Plant and Ford Aerospace in San Jose, Calif., where he was a senior program management engineer before moving back to Lorain.

He was a member of Mount Zion Baptist Church in Lorain and Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity and enjoyed reading and writing poetry.

Survivors include his wife, Ann M. Robinson-Lewis; sons James Lewis, Anthony Robinson of Union, N.J., and Christopher Lewis of Fairfax, Va.; daughters Tisha Ross of Atlanta, Ga., Sheila Robinson and Lela Carlton, both of Lorain, and Monica Church of Southfield, Mich.; his mother, Dorothy Brewer of Lorain; brothers Michael Lewis of Seattle, Wash., Randy Lewis of Elyria and Stanley Barnette of Lorain; sisters Ann Hudson of Cleveland, Michaelle Brewer and Renay Brewer, both of Lorain, Yvonne Brewer of Columbus and his twin sister, Terry Lewis of Lorain; and 11 grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews and other relatives. He was preceded in death by his father, Henry Lewis; and brother, Rickie Lewis.

Friends may call Friday, 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. at Mount Zion Baptist Church, 1516 E. 30th St., where services will be Saturday at 11 a.m. The Rev. Melvin Woodard III, pastor, will officiate. Burial will be in Elmwood Cemetery, Lorain.

Arrangements by Brown-Robinson Funeral Home, Lorain


Maj (ret) Orren Wilson, 548 RTG Coordination and Training Section, passed away on March 18, 2006 in Yorktown, Virginia.

                           Major Wilson talking to Amber Arnold 
                           at a Recce Social 1985

WILSON – Ret. Major (USAF) Orren Daniel Wilson, 61, Yorktown, Va., passed away Saturday, March 18, 2006, at home.  Born Dec. 26, 1944, son of the late Orren G. and Dorothy (Lendell) Wilson.  Survived by wife, Paulette (Cintula) Wilson, Yorktown, Va.; son, Jeffrey S., married to Marguerite Wilson, Seaford, Va.; daughter, Lisa M. Carmosino, married to Steven, Austin, Texas; grandchildren, Andrew Forrest; Zachery Wilson; Jan, Katherine and Jeffrey Japour.    Pop Pop would like his grandchildren to remember all the happy times they had together.  Member of the Exchange Club of York and former member of Old Point Exchange Club.  Friends received from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Frank Duca Funeral Home, Westmont Chapel, 1622 Menoher Blvd., where funeral service will be held 10 a.m. Thursday, the Very Rev. Paul E. Turnbull, V.F.   Entombment, Grandview Mausoleum.

Mrs Anne Bazzell, 548 RTG Commander’s Secretary, passed away on September 11, 2005 in Manahawkin, New Jersey.

Anne Bazzell, Outstanding Federal Employee of The Year 1974, with the late Col Duane Vandenberg

ANNE MARIE PENTAL, 65, of Honolulu, Hawaii, and Manahawkin, STAFFORD, passed away on Sunday, Sept. 11, 2005 at home. Born in Trenton, Mrs. Pental resided most of her life in Hawaii. She was an Air Force historian, employed by the Department of Defense, U.S. Air Force at Hickam Air Force Base, headquarters of the Pacific Air Forces in Honolulu, Hawaii. Her job took her around the world, regularly to Korea and Japan, as well as to the South Pole, New Zealand and Australia. She was co-author of “In Defense of Freedom Pacific Air Forces’ Golden Legacy 1947-1997.” She was a graduate of Cathedral High School Class of 1957, and received her bachelor’s degree from Thomas Edison College, and her master’s degree from the University of the Pacific in California. She was a member of the Holy Family Parish in Honolulu, Hawaii, where she was a lector, eucharistic minister and a religious educator. She was president of the Business and Professional Womans Association of Honolulu, a longtime member of the Cathedral Choir, and a CampFire leader.

She was the daughter of the late Thomas M. and Anne C. Jansen Ryan and the wife of the late Col. Basil Bazzell. Surviving are her husband, Raymond F. Pental Jr.; a stepson, Raymond F. Pental and his wife Karen of Lawrenceville; two stepdaughters, Gail Serrano and her husband Sam of Bristol, Pa., and Susan Gross and her husband Dr. David Gross of Moorestown; a stepdaughter-in-law, Mary Pental of Boalsburg, Pa.; two sisters and a brother-in-law, Eileen Streight of Hamilton Township, and Margaret Ryan and her husband Steven Lerner of New York City; a brother, Thomas M. Ryan and his companion Donna Schwartz of Hamilton Township; six stepgrandchildren; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Calling hours will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the M. William Murphy Funeral Home, 1863 Hamilton Ave., Hamilton Township. The funeral will be at 9:30 a.m. Thursday at the funeral home followed by a 11 a.m. Mass of Christian Burial at Holy Angels Church, S. Broad Street, Trenton. Burial will be in Punch Bowl Military Cemetery, Honolulu, Hawaii, which is the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. Donations in her memory may be made to the Atlantic Care Regional Medical Center Hospice, P.O. Box 1626, Pleasantville, NJ 08232

CMSgt (ret) Loren Paul Post, 548 RTG Research and Analysis Division passed away on July 21, 2005 in Mary Esther, Florida.  No obituary was found for him.

Loren Post manning the 548th 
booth at the Hickam Youth Festival
November 26, 1944 – July 21, 2005

Maj (ret) B. Sue Hauser, 548 RTG Admin/Exec Officer, passed away on July 10, 2005 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  

December 7, 1937 – July 10, 2005

Major B. Sue Hauser

Major B. Sue Hauser retired USAF, born December 7, 1937, passed away July 10, 2005. Sue was a person who liked all kinds of games and sports. She especially enjoyed a good game of golf or Chinese checkers. Two sisters: Faye (Norm) Brodeur and Dorothy (G.W.) Hartlein; and nephews: Ken (Charlotte) Hartlein, Chris (Angela) Brodeur, Donald, Jerry, and Larry Hartlein survive her. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Sue’s name to the charity of your choice.  Published in The Gazette on July 14, 2005

SMSgt (ret) Robert John Holmes, 548 RTG Exploitation, passed away on June 18, 2004.  No obituary was found for him.

TSgt Holmes, 548 RTG NCO of the 
Year 1984, with Governor Ariyoshi
September 5, 1957 – June 18, 2004

TSgt (ret) Raymond F. “Ray” White Sr., 548 RTG Exploitation, 1976 – 1979, passed away on May 30th, 2004 in Winter Garden, Florida.

October 10, 1943 – 30 May 2004

WHITE, RAYMOND F., SR., Raymond F. White, Sr., 60, of Winter Garden passed away Sunday, May 30th. Born in Central Falls, RI, he moved to Central Florida in 1984. He was Catholic and worked as a letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service. Mr. White was a U.S. Veteran and retired from the Air Force after 20 years. He also served in Vietnam. Survived by his son, Allen (Angela) White of Winter Garden; sisters Arlene Osbourne, New Smyrna, Alice Cloutier, MA, Christine of VA; brothers: Russell White, Kissimmee and Thomas White, CO; granddaughter, Adelynn Jane White, Winter Garden. Mr. White is preceded in death by his wife Shirley and his son Raymond White, Jr. Services will be held Thursday June 2, at 11AM in the chapel of the Dobbs Funeral Home with Pastor Bryan Stamper officiating. Friends may call on Thursday from 9:30AM until the service hour. Interment will follow at Woodlawn Memorial Park.

Published in the Orlando Sentinel on June 1, 2004 

John Schlimmer:  I met Ray and his family at Shaw AFB in 1975 (18th TRS PPIF) and spent many weekend hours with them.  They treated me like family.  Ray PCSed to the 548thin ’76, and I went back to the 544th at Offutt the same year.  Ray came to Offutt TDY early in ’77 for DSIATP.  He hated the school and missed Hawaii and his family, but we had hours of playing cards and cribbage while it lasted.   Ray also spent a weekend in my hometown of Cedar Falls, IA.  When Deb and I honeymooned at the Hale Koa in December ’77, Ray and Shirley helped us with touring tips and even loaned us their car a couple times.  Ray’s next assignment in ’79 brought him to Offutt, where he replaced me as a collection requirements manager for SAC/IN when I PCSed to the 497th.  We returned to Offutt in ’81 on humanitarian reassignment, and our families enjoyed a lot of time together until Ray retired in ’84 as a TSgt.  Ray succumbed to brain cancer, Shirley to internal cancer, both of which Agent Orange is suspected to be a factor.  Ray was in the Navy in Viet Nam when he met Shirley, an Army nurse, while they were both on R&R.  Two wonderful people that I’ll always consider among the best of my friends.     

Edward “Ike” Killmeier, SSgt, 548 RTG Exploitation, passed away on May 24, 2004 in Tucson, Arizona.

Edward F. (Ike) Killmeier III passed away on May 24, 2004, after a second battle with cancer.  Ed was 55 and born on July 17, 1948, in Niskayuna, New York, to Edward and Elsie Killmeier. Ed lived in Middleburg, New York, until the age of 12, when his family moved to Mystic Connecticut. He attended college in Iowa and North Carolina and enlisted in the US Air Force in May 1969, and served 11 years as a Photo Enterpreter. He married the former Mary Wanserski on May 31, 1980, and settled in Phoenix, where he graduated from the Universal Technical Institute. They have two children, Carly, 21, and Eddie, 19. In November 1981, Ed started working for Technical Air Balance, and transferred to Tucson in March 1984. He purchased the Tucson branch of Technical Air Balance, which is now known as Systems Commissioning & Testing, Inc. on April 30, 1994. Ed is preceded in death by his parents, one brother, grandparents, aunts and uncles. He is survived by his devoted wife, Mary; loving children, Carly of Tempe, Eddie in the US Army, stationed at Fort Gordon, Georgia; a sister, April Ludy of Vermont; an uncle, Lance of New York; an aunt, Marion Buschynski of New York; several nieces, nephews and cousins. Ed enjoyed golf, woodworking. He was respected by all who knew him personally and professionally and will be deeply missed. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations in the memory of Ed be made to the American Cancer Society, Southeastern Arizona Region, 1636 N. Swan Rd., Suite 151, Tucson, AZ 85712. Visitation at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 29, 2004, DESERT SUNSET FUNERAL HOME, 3081 W. Orange Grove Rd. Funeral service at 11:00 a.m. Arrangements entrusted to DESERT SUNSET FUNERAL HOME, Tucson, 520-297-9007.
The Arizona Daily Star – (May/29/2004)

CMSgt (ret) David Malcolm, 548 RTG First Sergeant, passed away on August 8, 2003 in Fairmont, West Virginia.  No obituary was found for him.

“First Shirt” CMSgt Dave Malcolm
February 17, 1932 – August 8, 2003

LtCol (ret) Phillip L. Bostur, 548 RTG Exploitation Division, passed away on November 23, 2002 in Round Rock, Texas. 

Maj Phil Bostur Officer Group Photo 1978

(11/27/2002)Lt. Col. Phillip L. Bostur, Ret. Jun. 30, 1939 – Nov. 23, 2002 Mr. Phil was a man who was very much loved. He will be dearly missed as a husband, father, pop-pop, brother, uncle, and friend. He embraced every situation with optimism, and faced every challenge with bravery and a positive outlook. He was loving and gentle, generous and kind, forgiving and accepting. He will be deeply missed and fondly remembered by all who knew him. Services will be held at Beck Funeral Home, 15709 Ranch Road 620, at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, November 30, 2002. In lieu of flowers, please send contributions in Phil’s memory to The Sunshine Kids Foundation, Dedicated to Children with Cancer, 2814 Virginia St., Houston, Texas 77098. Arrangements under the direction of Beck Funeral Home, Round Rock/ Austin, 244-3772.Published in Austin American-Statesman on November 27, 2002

Maj (ret) Dr. Sanders Sue Anne Laubenthal, 548 RTG 1987 – 1990, Chief, Plans and Production Division, passed away on May 15, 2002 in Washington, D.C.

Sanders Anne Laubenthal 1968 University of Alabama year book

Dr. Sanders Anne Laubenthal, native resident, exemplary author and poetess of Mobile, Alabama, born on December 25, 1943 died at a local hospital in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, May 15, 2002 at age 58.
Dr. Laubenthal graduated from Springhill College Summa cum Laude in 1965 and went on to attain her Doctorate at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. She served as assistant professor of English at Troy State University, Troy, Alabama from which she entered into a career with the United States Air Force which spanned 20 years.
>From 1974 to 1976, Major Laubenthal worked as an Education and Training Officer, Air University, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. From 1976 to 1977 Major Laubenthal served as Deputy Chief of History, Thirteenth Air Force (13th AF) Clark Air Base, Philippines. From 1977 to 1980, she served as Assistant, then Associate Professor of Humanities, Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT) and Institute Historian, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. 
>From 1981 to 1984 she served as Chief Research Management 544th Strategic Intelligence Wing (544 SIW), Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. From 1984 to 1986 Major Laubenthal served as Assistant Dean for External Relations Defense Intelligence College (DIA), Bolling Air Force Base, District of Columbia..
From 1987 to 1990, she served as Chief, Intelligence Production Management Division, Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) and Chief, Plans and Programs Division, for the 548th Reconnaissance Technical Group (548 RTG), Hickman Air Force Base, Hawaii.
Major Laubenthal served as Officer for Scheduled Defense Intelligence Production, Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA), Bolling Air Force Base, District of Columbia, fro 1990 to 1993, after which time she retired.
Most recently, Ms. Laubenthal worked for Resource Consultants International, Inc. a worldwide provider of integrated solutions, supporting governmental agencies, based in Vienna, Virginia.
From 1994 to 1997 she edited A’Bhratach (“The Banner”), a monthly newsletter of the Mid-East Region of Clan Donald USA, Inc., through which she attracted outside membership, drew on resources for her books, and celebrated her Scottish ancestry.  She is survived by many family members and friends.

She is buried next to her parents in The Catholic Cemetery, Mobile, Alabama.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Sanders Anne Laubenthal (December 25, 1943 – May 15, 2002) was an Americanpoetnovelisthistorian and textbook writer. Much of her work concerns MobileAlabama, of which she was a native. She also wrote about the history of unrecorded areas of Scotland. She is best known, however, for one major work, the ArthurianfantasyExcalibur, first published in the celebrated Ballantine Adult Fantasy series in August 1973 and reprinted a number of times since.

Laubenthal served the United States Air Force from the time of the Vietnam War, starting writing OJT books for trainees in comic book style to train for lower level jobs such as dining hall cooks. She served as editor of many Air Force professional journals. Having reached the rank of Major in the Air Force, she retired, but continued to do research and write many reports/articles for the military. She had just finished her last military project and received payment for another reprint for Excalibur before she died from diabetic complications. Friends describe her as a quiet lady who was loyal and always creating.

MSgt (ret) Terry D Antkowiak, 548 RTG Supply, passed away on August 27, 2000 in O’Fallon, Illinois.  Unable to locate an obituary for him.

6 April 1950 – August 27, 2000

MSgt (ret) Howard J. Dick, 548 RTG, passed away on February 13, 2000 in Moreno Valley, California.  No obituary found. Born September 20, 1935, Oneill Holt, Nebraska, entered Air Force January 11, 1954.

MSgt (ret) Jack Arnold, 548 RTG Exploitation, passed away on March 31, 1999 in Evansville, Indiana.

TSgt Jack Arnold being re-enlisted by the late Col Vandenberg in September 1974
 February 4, 1936 – March 31, 1999

Arnold Family:   Jack, Marie, Jackie Jr & Rebecca

Jack Eugene Arnold son of Raymond William Arnold & Janie B Smith he married Marie Gail Clark Arnold 08 Mar 1955 they had two children Jack Eugene Arnold 27 Jan 1956 and Rebecca Lynn Arnold 17 Nov 1957

Jack served 26 years in the Air Force, receiving the Bronze Star and Meritorious Service Medal with Oak Leaf Clusters. After 14 years with the Postal Service he retired in 1995. Was married 44 yrs to his childhood sweetheart Marie Gail Clark, he was a loving husband, devoted father of two, grandfather of 4 and great grandfather of 5.

Poem on Frame: 
Remember us with smiles and gladness
For all the happy times we can recall
For if remembering us brings only sorrow and sadness
Then don’t remember us at all. 
By Jack Arnold

MSgt (ret) Obiediah Warthen, Jr., 548 RTG, Air Target Materials Admin (702×0), circa 1968, passed away on February 22, 1998 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  No Obituary found. 

“Obie” was born at Warthen, Georgia on December 9, 1946 and married the former Janis Adele Welch in July 1977 while stationed at Vandenburg AFB, California.  He is buried at the Mt. Olive Baptist Church Cemetery, Warthen, Washington County, Georgia.

SMSgt Jay Michael Rebouche, 548 RTG Research and Analysis Division, passed away on Februay 2, 1996 in Molesworth, Cambridgeshire, England.

Birth:  Jun. 13, 1954, Sacramento, California
Death:   Feb. 2, 1996, Molesworth, Cambridgeshire, England     


Jay Michael Rebouché was born June 13, 1954 in Sacramento, California and departed this life February 2, 1996 in England. After graduating from Carter High School in Dallas, Texas he enlisted in the Air Force, served throughout the Pacific, Washington D.C., and England. At the time of his death, Jay was assigned as a Senior Master Sergeant at the Air Force Element, Joint Analysis Center, RAF Molesworth, U.K. and was anticipating retirement this year. Sergeant Rebouché was honored as Intelligence NCO of the year by PACAF, while attached to the 6306th RTF, 6th Tactical Intelligence Group. In his military career, he took advantage of available Colleges and Universities and was awarded his Bachelors Degree from the University of Maryland. Jay had sponsored a foster daughter through World Vision International. He was active not only individually, but also as a leader in recruiting peers to participate. Jay is survived by his wife, Diane; mother, Helen; father, Alton; two brothers, Dee and Tim; sister, Leonie, and nieces and nephews, Rachel, Ryan & Kathy Rebouché, David Dykes, Tony Inchausté, and Dana and Melanie Digit. 

TSgt (ret) Julien M. LaRochelle, 548 RTG Library and Exploitation, passed away on April 22, 1998 in Goffstown, New Hampshire.
February 19, 1935 – April 22, 1998.
TSgt (ret) Walter A. Winkleman, 67 RTG and 548 RTG Photo Lab, passed away on February 24, 1997 in Honolulu, Hawaii.


Col (ret) Storm Charles Rhode Jr., Commander 548 RTS and 548 RTG, passed away on August 2, 1994 in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.


       Col Storm C Rhode Jr.

Col Rhode with his wife Audree (1920-2012)
  Sept 24, 1915 – Aug 2, 1994 

General Hunter Harris Jr. (PACAF Commander) and 
         Col. Storm Rhode 548 RTS Commander

Col Rhode Vietnam 1965

Army Air Forces Aviation Cadet (Photo provided by Richard Rhode)

Obituary from the “News-Tribune” of Duluth, Minnesota dated 4 Aug 1994:

Storm Rhode Jr., piloted bombers during WW II 

     Col. Storm Charles Rhode Jr., a retired military pilot and resident of Myrtle Beach, S.C., formerly of Duluth, died Tuesday, Aug. 2, 1994, in Myrtle Beach. He was 78.
He was born and raised in Duluth, graduated from Central High in 1933 and attended the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, the University of California, Sacramento, and the University of Maryland in Naples, Italy.
     From 1933 to 1935, Mr. Rhode was a member of Duluth’s 125th Field Artillery Minnesota National Guard. After leaving Duluth, he worked for the Minnesota and Ontario Paper Co., now known as Boise Cascade. He married his wife, Audree Beekman, in Minneapolis on January 17, 1942.
     He served with the Army Air Corps during World War II and spent the next 30 years on flight status in the Air Force. He aviated mostly bombers, including the B-17 Flying Fortress, and was a member of the U.S. Eight [sic] Air Force, and was the Pathfinder Lead for 30 missions with the famed “Bloody Hundredth” Bomb Group. He served as director of intelligence from 1964 to 1965 in South Vietnam and was decorated with two Legion of Merits for his commendable performance.
     Mr. Rhode retired from the Air Force in 1969 and moved to Myrtle Beach, where he organized and operated an Air Force Retiree Activities Office that was consistently rated No. 1 in the Air Force. He was appointed to the Air Force Chief of Staff’s Retiree Council. He wrote for the Knight-Ridder newspaper The Sun News for 10 years. His column, “Winging It,” was for the active and retiree military population.
     Surviving are his wife, Audree; three sons, Col. Storm C. Rhode III of Vienna, Va., Michael Rhode of Leaburg, Ore, and Maj. Richard Rhode of Waipahu, Hawaii; four daughters, Audree Severn of Fort Benning, Ga., Barbara Stiles of San Antonio, Texas, Kelly Rhode of Akron, Ohio, and Deborah King of Columbia, S.C.; 18 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
     Services will be at 10 a.m. today in St. Andrew’s Catholic Church, Myrtle Beach. Burial with full military honors will be at 9:45 a.m. Tuesday in Arlington National Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Mercy Hospice of Horry Co., P.O. Box 1409, Myrtle Beach, SC 29578. Arrangements are by McMillan-Small Funeral Home, Myrtle Beach, Bell Brothers Funeral Home-Bell Brothers Chapel, Duluth.


Colonel Storm C. Rhode, Jr.

  • Colonel Rhode was born in Duluth, MN in 1915. After high school Storm worked for Kelly-Howe-Thompson Company (wholesale hardware) in Duluth. He was sent to KHT’s  (now Boise Cascade) warehouse by the Fort Peck Dam when it was under construction. He then went to Minneapolis and sold automobile tires, then worked for the Minnesota-Ontario Paper Company as an office boy.  He wrote a monthly paper for the company, impressing his boss.  He attended the Univ. of Minnesota in Minneapolis.,  He met his wife Audree in Minneapolis. After they married he volunteered for the Army Air Force. 
  • He was always interested in flying and the military. During the 1930’s he took flying lessons as a civilian, and he also joined the Minnesota National Guard.
  • He entered the AAF as an aviation cadet at the start of WWII. He was trained as a navigator/bombardier and was selected as one of the first B-17 radar bombardiers. He went to England where he was assigned to the 100th Bombardment Group of the 8th AF. The 100th was famed for flying especially tough missions and also for its high aircraft loss and aircrew casualty rates. He was selected as one of the very few “lead” crews, which led the Group, Wing, or Division on missions over the most heavily defended parts of Europe.
  • He flew missions against Berlin, Munster, Hamburg, and a host of other targets deep inside Germany, and also flew on a shuttle mission where he departed England, flew across Germany and Poland, and dropped ammunition and medical supplies to the Polish Underground Army in the Warsaw uprising of 1944. His aircraft, which had sustained heavy battle damage, went on into Russia where it recovered at Poltava in the Ukraine.
  • He was awarded the Purple Heart, two Distinguished Flying Crosses, and numerous air medals. One of his DFC’s (for valor) was awarded when his aircraft was hit by a flak burst just outside the fuselage while on final run to the target. The explosion blew him across the bombardier’s compartment and wounded him in the hip with a three inch piece of shrapnel. Despite his wound he crawled back to the bombsight and led the entire formation to the bomb release point, successfully dropping the entire formation’s bombs on his command.
  • Another DFC was awarded for his leadership and bombing accuracy against the heavily overcast target of Swinemunde. On this mission he was cited for “the best radar bombing mission of the war”.
  • Based on his outstanding leadership, he received a combat promotion to Captain—only six weeks after he was promoted First Lieutenant.
  • He returned to the U.S. in 1945 and cross-trained into B-29’s in preparation for operations against Japan. The war ended before he completed this training.
  • From 1945-1950 he helped establish the Navigation and Radar Bombardment School at Mather AFB, CA. Here he developed the radar bombardment curriculum and instructed in B-17’s, B-25’s, and B-29’s.
  • From 1950-54 he was assigned to the Pentagon, where he first worked with AF Intelligence– in this case helping establish the strategic targeting program.
  • From 1955-58 he was assigned to the NATO Allied Forces Southern Europe HQ in Naples, Italy, where he was the executive to the DCS/Intelligence.
  • From 1958-1964 he was assigned to Westover AFB, MA.

  • Initially, he was Director of Intelligence for the 99th Bomb Wing, and also flew missions in B-52s.
  • While still at Westover, he was selected to command the 8th Reconnaissance Technical Squadron(RTS), which processed and exploited products from some of the most secret and sensitivereconnaissance programs, including the U-2, SR-71, and the first satellite systems.
  • He was promoted Colonel at Westover, and became the Deputy Director of Intelligence for Strategic Air Command’s 8th AF. He was deputy to Col Rockly Triantifellu, later head of AF Intelligence. While Col Rhode was Deputy Director of Intel, the Cuban Missile Crisis erupted, and he headed the HQ’s Intelligence battle staff –spending over a month in 8th AF’s underground command post during this critical period.
  • In 1964 he was assigned as Director of Intelligence for the 2nd Air Division—later expanded to 7th Air Force—at Tan Son Nhut AB in Saigon, Vietnam.
  • Here he found himself –with an extremely small staff—the head of all AF intelligence inVietnam. He endured several coups as South Vietnamese generals overthrew a succession ofgovernments. The unstable security situation caused him to keep a tommy gun in his office and an eye peeled for tanks in the courtyard outside.

  • As the air war escalated, he led the effort to develop targets and create a reconnaissance and targeting system, again with bare-bones manning and equipment. During this time a number of future AF intelligence leaders received their baptism of fire while working with him. These included M/Gen James Enney (then a major) and B/Gen Larry Church (also a major).
  • When he was reassigned in 1965, just as 2nd Air Div was upgraded to 7th AF, he was replaced byhis old boss (now B/Gen) Rockly Triantifellu –and seven colonels.
  • In 1965, he was assigned to Hickam at the request of General Hunter Harris, CINCPACAF, who had been impressed with Col Rhode’s 8th RTS at Westover. General Harris charged him with setting up afirst-class reconnaissance technical (recce tech) capability for PACAF on the scale needed to support the growing war in Southeast Asia.

  • He started with a small recce tech element, Det 1 of the 67th RTS out of Japan. It was located in a decrepit wooden structure on the far side of the base, well away from the HQ. The troops at the facility used to joke that if the termites in the building ever stopped holding hands, the building would fall down.
  • He began by requesting additional experienced personnel, photo processing equipment, light tables, and all the other equipment needed for a first-class operation, meanwhile shoring up the old building to handle the extra people and equipment.
  • He also scouted around the base for a better facility, and determined that the big hangar on the flight line right across the street from PACAF HQ was the best candidate. The problem was, the base commander, the flight operations personnel, and the aircraft maintenance personnel all had other ideas for the facility. It took tremendous tenacity, planning, and persuasion, but Col Rhode eventually talked all the other contenders out of the hangar. Then the real work began.
  • He oversaw conversion of the hangar into a multi-story facility with the communications, wet film processing, exploitation, and mapping, charting, and geodesy capabilities necessary to make the 548th into a world-class operation. He also undertook a major expansion of computer and data base capabilities to take full advantage of these emerging technologies.
  • The 548th RTG processed and exploited products from drones, tactical reconnaissance, U-2, SR-71, and satellite sources. It also provided target materials and maps and charts. The 548th did this under extremely tight time pressures, getting critical exploited data or processed film to warfighters and decision-makers in time to affect a battle or make a time-critical decision.
  • The 548th provided support for the entire theater—CINCPAC HQ, and Army, Navy, and Marine organizations—as well as national users.
  • Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Earl Wheeler both visited the facility at various times to see the operation and to thank the 548thpersonnel for their support.
  • A lot of future AF intelligence leaders got grounding in recce tech operations in the 548th. They included B/Gen Irv Rokke, and Col. Ford Moseley, among others.

  • Colonel Rhode retired in February, 1969. In addition to the aforementioned Purple Heart, DFCs, and Air Medals, he was awarded numerous other decorations. These included the French Croix de Guerre and the Polish Underground Army Cross.
  • After retiring from the AF, he lived in Saudi Arabia and Spain for several years, settling for good in Myrtle Beach, SC in 1972.
  • He died in August, 1994, nearly 79 years old. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery with Audree, his wife of 52 years.
  • He is survived by seven children, 18 grandchildren, and many great-grandchildren.

Col (ret) Clark E. Davison, Commander 548 RTG,  passed away on February 9, 1994 in Rohnert Park, Sonoma, California and is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. 

                                          Col Davison 1971

The following photo and bio are from the 548th Annual History for 1970 which was provided by Samuel Walker (Copy of a copy).

        Col Clark E. Davison
April 4 1918 – February 9, 1994

The Press Democrat, Santa Rosa, California

Chris Knowles wrote this about Col Davison, who replaced Col Fitzgerald.   (Note: Col Davison never made General)

What was the name of the colonel in 1971 who turned over the reins of the 548th to Colonel A. Ernest Fitzgerald and became a General at PACAF? At the 1971 Christmas party I approached him as a two-striper. My wife, a two-striper, had just been transferred to the night shift in the carpool as an Admin. Asst. I asked if he could help, otherwise we’d need two cars and we couldn’t afford that. The party was on a Friday afternoon. My senior NCO’s looked on in awe. Monday morning my wife received orders transferring her to the 548th as the Commander’s secretary. Who thinks generals couldn’t relate to the needs of the enlisted men?

MSgt (ret) Eugene V. “Andy” Andrenacci, 548 RTG Special Security Office (SSO), passed away on January 1, 1994 in Penn Valley, California.

               November 11, 1934 – 1 January 1994

MSgt (ret) Richard W. “Dick” Kingsley, 548 RTG Exploitation, passed away on September 24, 1993 in Greenville, Tennesee.
December 16, 1944 – September 24, 1993

TSgt (ret) Marc P. Bernier, 548 RTG Operations, passed away on August 22, 1993 in Hampton, Virginia.

Marc as a two striper

December 21, 1960 – August 22, 1993

Marc P. Bernier, 32, of Brians Court, a native of Sanford, Maine, died Sunday at his home of non-hodgkins lymphoma.

A son of Maurice and Theresa Roy Bernier, he attended Sanford schools and graduated from Sanford High School in 1980. In 1986, he received an associates degree in business administration from the Community College of the Air Force.

In 1980, Mr. Bernier enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and served in Grand Forks, ND, Kunsan Air Base in South Korea, Hickam AFB, Hawaii, the Pentagon and Langley AFB in Virginia. He was medically retired as a Technical Sergeant in May because of illness.

He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, the Air Force Commendation Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Air Force Achievement Medal.

He was a member of the Langley Air Force Base Chapel Community and he was an active supporter of the Big Brothers program in North Dakota.

Prior to his military career, he worked at Sprague Electric and Shaw’s Supermarket in Sanford.

Surviving are his parents of Sanford; his wife of three years, Carrie Lamb Bernier; a son Pitou of Hampton; a sister, Rachel Bernier of Bridgton, ME; two brothers, James of Sanford, and David of Alexandria, Virginia; and his maternal grandmother, Alpaide Roy of Sanford.

A funeral mass will be celebrated at 9am Friday at Holy Family Church in Sanford. Burial will be in St. Ignatius Cemetary, Sanford.

Col (ret) Barre E. Smuck, Commander 548 RTG, passed away on March 20, 1993 in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania.  No obituary or bio found.

Col Smuck 548th Officer Group Photo 1978
        July 14, 1933 – March 20, 1994

Rotary Club of Elizabethtown Pennsylvania


Since it was started in 1984, our Club has contributed over $44,000 to the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center to establish a perpetual endowment, the income from which is used to fund Cancer Research. The endowment began as a way to provide memorial contributions in member of Paul Grubb, Jr, a Past President of the Club, who died from cancer. Later, it also became a memorial to Col. Barre Smuck, a Past President of the Club, for whom the annual Golf Tournament is named.  The present market value of the invested fund exceeds $65,000. (6/30/12)Col Smuck is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Sgt Paul R. Tingle Jr., 548 RTG Precision Photo Maintenance, passed away on April 19, 1993 in Honolulu Hawaii.

The Daily Times, Salisbury, Maryland


The Honolulu Advertiser, April 26, 1993
                 April 23, 1993

Charles Blanton provided the following information on Sept 27, 2013:    Paul R. Tingle passed away several years ago in Hawaii. I was there on vacation and called one of the two (as I recall) Paul Tingles’ in the Honolulu Phone book and his wife answered and informed me he had passed away. He had elected to remain in Hawaii at the end of his tour.  Paul, along with Ted T. Stone, and I were together all the way from Lowery Tech. School (’67) to Hickam, and participated in the Precision Photo Maint. Section. We were part of the construction when we moved from the old hangar to the new building in the building of the photo labs, and placement of the continuous film processors.

Capt Richard H. Fisher Jr., 548 RTG and 67 RTS, passed away on August 29, 1992, in San Bernardino, California.

 April 13, 1940 – August 29, 1992

 Capt Richard Fisher 1973 Photo

Fumiko and Capt Richard Fisher at 67th Dining In

 Richard and Fumiko in Hawaii 1966

MSgt Philip R. Pountain, 548 RTG Research and Analysis, was killed when his vehicle was hit by a drunk driver on January 16, 1982 in Sumter, South Carolina.  He is buried in South Glens Falls, New York.

     TSgt Phil Pountain NCO of the 3rd Quarter 1975
                   11 May 1944 – 16 January 1982

James F Fitzgerald, Capt 548 RTG Research and Analysis Division, was killed on May 18, 1980 by the eruption of Mount Saint Helens in Washington.

    Akron Beacon Journal, June 6, 1980

                                           Jim’s Blue Datsun

Trixie Anders constructed this  monument to her friend Jim Fitzgerald in 1995, at  Spud Mountain site where he was killed in the Mount St. Helens blast.

Jim attended the University of Akron; graduating in 1970, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force through the AFROTC program. Jim earned a B.S. in geology, went on to get his M.S. from University of Idaho, and was working on his Ph.D. in Vulcanology at the time of his death. At the of his death he was engaged in field work for his doctoral dissertation as a graduate student at the University of Idaho.

Every weekend from late March until the eruption of Mount St. Helens on May 18, 1980, Pullman resident Barry Johnston watched the volcano with his then-wife, Trixie Anders, a Washington State University doctoral student in geology.

On May 16, 1980, Johnston and Anders camped out on Spud Mountain with their friend Jim Fitzgerald, another geology student. The couple opted to stay at a motel in Toutle, Wash., the next night, while Fitzgerald again camped on the mountain.

The next morning, after stopping for breakfast, the pair arrived at the Spud Mountain turnoff to see Mount St. Helens erupting. After taking a couple photos, they hightailed it down mountain roads, chased by a cloud of volcanic debris and escaping with their lives. James Fitzgerald’s body was later recovered from his blue Datsun.

In 1995, Trixie Anders constructed a monument to her friend Jim Fitzgerald at the Spud Mountain site where he was killed in the Mt St. Helens blast. 
Mount Saint Helens Memorial Grove 
Skamania County
Washington, USA

TSgt (ret) Gerald L “Gerry” Munroe, 548 RTG Exploitation and Edit, passed away on January 16, 1975 in Seattle, Washington.

Gerry at his retirement party in September 1974 with the late Col Vandenberg

                                March 21, 1940 – January 16, 1975


No information on:

SMSgt (ret) Joe Brown, 548 RTG Exploitation
(Too common of a name, if anyone has any information, please send)