Brigadier General John O. Gray, USAF (Retired) 90, died on July 22, 2007 from a long battle with congestive heart failure.
Born in Boston, he was raised in Silver Valley, a lumber and mining area of northern Idaho. He graduated from the University of Idaho and is a member of the University of Idaho Alumni Hall of Fame.
In 1941 he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Army Air Force from the University of Idaho ROTC program. During World War II he served on the headquarters staff of General Jimmy Doolittle's Eighth Air Force in England. During the Korean and Vietnam wars he served in Air Force headquarters in the Pentagon. He was a public affairs advocate of Air Force Reserve Affairs, often dealing directly with the late military analysts Verne Haughland and Charles Cordry. For his work for the Air Force Reserve he was cited in the Congressional Record by Speaker of the House, Jim Wright.
Following his Air Force retirement he twice became the Executive Director of the Air Force Association and publisher of its Air Force Magazine. Upon his second retirement from the Air Force Association he became a National Director Emeritus of that organization and an emeritus member of its National Board of Directors.
His awards include the Air Force Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, a meritorious service medal, along with many formal recognitions of military oriented organizations.
He was a permanent member of the Air Force Memorial Foundation Board of Trustees which was responsible for raising millions of dollars for, and overseeing the construction of the Air Force Memorial. The memorial was dedicated by President George W. Bush on October 14, 2006.
Survivors include a brother, Robert Deal, of Yakima, Washington; two sisters, Ruth Carpenter of New Port, Washington and Joan Grondahi of Everett, Washington; several nieces and nephews; and many, many friends.
Interment will be at Arlington Cemetery on October 4, 2007 at 9:00 a.m.. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Air Force Memorial Foundation, or the scholarship fund of the Air Force Association, 1501 Lee Highway, Suite 400, Arlington, Virginia 22209
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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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