From a contemporary press report: June 13, 1985
Robins AFB, Georgia.—A severe thunderstorm hit Middle Georgia Tuesday. The wet and bleak weather matched the mood of Robins AFB and its neighboring communities, saddened and shocked by the death Tuesday in Melbourne, Florida of Brigadier General Garryl C. Sipple.
Today at 1 p.m. the Nation the General served for 24 years, will lay him to rest, with full military honors in Arlington National Cemetery. Middle Georgia bid farewell Thursday morning to the 46-year-old vice commander of the Warner Robins Air Logistics Center who became friend and neighbor, as well as leader in the brief period since his arrival last September from Casteau, Belgium, where he was special assistant to the Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers in Europe.
Colonel James Record, commander, 388th Tactical Fighter Wing, Hill Air Force Base, Utah, eulogized his late friend at the memorial service Thursday morning in the Robins Air Force Base Chapel.
Immediately following, General Sipple was accorded the traditional farewell 21-gun salute and the missing man formation fly-over.
The Kentucky native died June 11 at the Holmes Regional Hospital in Melbourne, Florida where he was admitted Saturday evening after suffering a severe brain hemorrhage from an aneurysm. General Sipple and his wife, Judy, the former Judith A. Anderson of Cincinnati, were in Florida attending the national convention of the Order of
the Daedalian, military aviators’ society. Major General Cornelius Nugteren, WR-ALC Commander, and Mrs. Nugteren flew to Florida to escort Mrs. Sipple home to Robbins to be with her children, Susan, l8, Beth, 16, and Mark, 12, who had been staying on base with friends.
General Sipple also is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Colledge S. Sipple of Williamstown, Ky.; and three brothers, Gaylon D. Sipple of Dry Ridge, Ky., Gene M. Sipple of Erlanger, Ky., and Greg L. Sipple of Independence, Ky. Born near Dry Ridge, Kentucky, March 17, 1939.
General Sipple confided in one interview that he little dreamed he’d ever become an Air Force officer. He wanted to be a lawyer and wondered what the military had to do with law when he was required in college to take ROTC training. Nevertheless, he was graduated from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor of Arts degree and won a regular commission as a distinguished graduate of the Air Force ROTC program. Like, his fate was sealed at age 20 when he stepped into an airplane for the first time.
“I was hooked. I was seduced,” he said to a local reporter on one occasion. “It was one of those ‘what do you want to be when you grow up’ type things. I wanted to be a fighter pilot. I guess I just haven’t grown up yet, because I still want to be a fighter pilot.” After earning his wings in December 1962 at Laredo AFB, Texas, General Sipple reported to Mather Air Force Base, California, as a pilot in the T-29D “Flying Classroom.” He volunteered for a tour in Southeast Asia in 1965 and again in 1972 as an F-4E pilot. On his first tour he served as an air liaison officer and forward air controller in the northernmost province of South Vietnam. A command pilot, 1,200 hours of his some 5,000 flying hours were combat hours – he flew a total of 525 missions on his first tour and 125 missions on his second.
He earned the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross with four oak leaf clusters, the Bronze Star Medal and the Air Medal with 36 oak leaf clusters. Among his other decorations and awards were the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster and the Meritorious Service Medal.
After flying the O-1E “Bird Dog” in Vietnam on his firs tour, he instructed in that aircraft at Hurlburg Field, Florida, then in 1968 became a faculty member at Squadron Officer School, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Ala. Subsequently, he was a distinguished graduate of the Air Command and Staff School and earned a master’s degree in education psychology from Troy State University and two years later, another master’s in political science from Auburn University. He also graduated from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and the National War College and completed the Air Force Advanced Management Program at the Colgate-Darden Graduate School of Business, University of Virginia. Upon his return to the U. S. in 1973, he was assigned to Headquarters, USAF, Washington, D. C., as a deputy assistant of congressional hearings and then as executive officer for the Air Force assistant vice chief of staff. From 1978 to 1979, he was deputy commander for operations, 401st Tactical Fighter Wing, Torrejon Air Base, Spain, and also served as the USAFE mission commander for NATO Exercise “Display Determination” at Montijo, Portugal, in 1978 and the USAFE mission commander for “Dawn Patrol in Greece the next year, In 1980 he became the Headquarters USAFE director of inspection at Ramstein Air Base in Germany, visiting and evaluating every Air Force unit from Norway to Turkey. In 1981 he qualified in the F-15 air superiority fighter (and later flew the Eagle in Robins) and became the commander of the 32nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, Camp New Amsterdam Air Bast, Netherlands. General Sipple also was a senior U. S. military representative to the Netherlands and served as a member of the U. S. Ambassador’s Country Team and in 1983 went to his new job in Belgium. [dated Thursday, June 13, 1985]
COURTESY OF THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE
BRIGADIER GENERAL GARRYL C. SIPPLE
Retired June 10, 1985, Died June 11, 1985
Brigadier General Garryl C. Sipple was vice commander, Warner Robins Air Logistics Center, Robins Air Force Base, Georgia.
General Sipple was born in 1939, near Dry Ridge, Kentucky. He earned a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Kentucky in 1961, a master's degree in educational psychology from Troy (Alabama) State University in 1969, and a master's of political science degree from Auburn (Alabama) University in 1971. He is a graduate of Squadron
Officer School, Air Command and Staff College, Industrial College of the Armed Forces and National War College. Additionally, he completed the Air Force Advanced Management Program at the Colgate-Darden Graduate School of Business, University of Virginia at Charlottesville.
He was awarded a commission as Second Lieutenant in 1961 as a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program. General Sipple completed pilot training at Laredo Air Force Base, Texas, in December 1962, and reported to Mather Air Force Base, California, as a pilot in the T-29D Flying Classroom.
In July 1965 General Sipple volunteered for a tour of duty in Southeast Asia, and was assigned as the Quang Tri Province, Republic of Vietnam, air liaison officer and forward air controller. He participated in ground combat during seven division-size and nine regiment-size operations conducted in the northern most province of the Republic of Vietnam. Additionally he flew 525 combat missions in the 0-1E Bird Dog airstrike control and reconnaissance aircraft.
Returning from Southeast Asia in August 1966, he reported to Hurlburt Field, Florida, as an O-1E instructor pilot with the 4410th Combat Crew Training Wing (Air Commandos). In 1968 General Sipple became a member of the faculty at Air University's Squadron Officer School at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. He subsequently attended Air Command and Staff College, also at Maxwell Air Force Base, and was selected as distinguished graduate.
From September 1971 to April 1972, General Sipple was assigned to Homestead Air Force Base, Florida, for combat crew training in F-4E Phantom IIs. He then transferred to Southeast Asia for a second combat tour of duty and was assigned to Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand, where he served first as a fighter pilot in the 13th Tactical Fighter Squadron; then 432nd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing chief of command and control; and later commanded the F-4E forward air controller squadron. He flew an additional 125 combat missions during this tour of duty, the majority of which were into the high threat areas of North Vietnam.
General Sipple returned to the United States in April 1973 and was assigned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., first as deputy assistant of congressional hearings and subsequently as executive officer for the Air Force assistant vice chief of staff. In August 1977 he entered the National War College, graduating in
He was then named deputy commander for operations, 401st Tactical Fighter Wing, Torrejon Air Base, Spain. He was the U.S. Air Forces in Europe mission commander for North Atlantic Treaty Organization Exercise”Display Determination” at Montijo, Portugal, in 1978 and the U.S. Air Forces in Europe mission commander for “Dawn Patrol” at Nea Anghialos, Greece, in 1979. General Sipple transferred to Ramstein Air Base, Germany, in January 1980, where he become the director of inspection at Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe. During this tour of duty, he and his inspection team visited and evaluated every Air Force unit from Norway to Turkey.
In July 1981 General Sipple qualified in the F-15 Eagle air superiority fighter and became commander of the 32nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, Camp New Amsterdam, Netherlands. This wing-level organization provided support to 13 geographically separated Air Force units throughout Northern Europe. General Sipple also
served as Senior U.S. Military Representative to the Netherlands and as a member of the U.S. ambassador's country team. In April 1983 he became special assistant to the chief of staff, Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers in Europe at Casteau, Belgium, and assumed his present duties in September 1984.
The general is a command pilot with nearly 5,000 flying hours, more than 1,200 of which were flown in combat. His military decorations and awards include the Silver Star, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross with four oak leaf clusters, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal and Air Medal with 36
oak leaf clusters.
He was promoted to brigadier general Sept. 1, 1984, with same date of rank.
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Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
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