In Memory

Campus Legend

BFTS:No. 5 British Flying Training School MC: Miami Campus DB: Daytona Beach, Fla. PC: Prescott, Ariz. WW: Worldwide Campus 

Embry-Riddle pays tribute to our Eagles who have passed. Deaths are listed as they are received/reported to us. Please notify the Alumni Relations office at, if you are aware of any classmates who should be memorialized.

July 02, 2017

Professor Emeritus and Retired U.S. Air Force Maj. Herbert Elliot Palmer

Professor Emeritus and Retired U.S. Air Force Maj. Herbert Elliot Palmer, who served in the physics department at Embry-Riddle's Daytona Beach Campus for 28 years, died on July 2, 2017, at the Merrimack County Nursing Home in Boscawen, N.H.

Born in Lawrence, Mass., Palmer studied physics and mathematics at the Lowell Technical Institute in Massachusetts. In 1960, he entered the U.S. Air Force as a 2nd Lieutenant Weather Officer. He continued his education in meteorology at New York University and the University of Michigan, within their High Altitude Engineering Lab, studying high altitude physics and solar geophysical relationships with a specialization in solar optical work.

As a captain in the Air Force, Palmer earned a master’s degree in meteorology in 1967 and a master’s degree in aeronomy (the science of the upper atmosphere) in 1968. The commander of the U.S. Air Force's Air Weather Service (AWS) in 1972 named Maj. Palmer “the best-qualified solar radio astronomer in the AWS.”

Following his military career, Palmer moved his family to Daytona Beach, Fla. He began teaching first at Bunnell High School and then at Embry-Riddle, where he received his glider pilot license. He retired as Professor Emeritus in 2005 and moved back to Warner, N.H.

Palmer is survived by his wife of 22 years, Barbara Hawk Palmer, and two children. A graveside service with military honors was held on July 10, 2017, at the New Hampshire State Veterans Cemetery.

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June 30, 2017

Victor Ngie Ming Wong (’17, DB) passed away on June 30, 2017, at Florida Hospital Waterman in Tavares, Fla., as a result of a diving accident at Alexander Springs, Fla.

Wong, 22, was an international student from Malaysia, who graduated in May 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering. During Wong’s time as a student at Embry-Riddle, he was active in the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the Avion newspaper, the Diving Eagles Scuba Club and the Embry-Riddle Future Space Explorers and Developers Society.

Snorri Gudmundsson, assistant professor of aerospace engineering, described Wong as a team player and a diligent problem solver when he attended his Aircraft Preliminary Design and Aircraft Detail Design courses.

“He was a very respectful person and a pleasure to be around. I recall clearly his quiet, polite, but triumphant laughter after he, on a few occasions, explained to me why he went down a particular path in his resolution of a design task,” Gudmundsson said.

Wong is survived by his parent Toh Yong Wong and uncle Vincent Phang. A viewing and funeral services were held on July 8, 2017, at DeGusipe Funeral Home in Maitland, Fla.  

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June 18, 2017

Romeo Thomas

Romeo Thomas, who was a professor of Mathematics at Embry-Riddle’s Prescott Campus, passed away in California on June 18, 2017, after the recurrence of a long illness. Thomas taught at the university for more than 25 years. Prescott Campus Chancellor Frank Ayers called Thomas “a dear friend to all of us, an amazing professor, a fighter with his health issues, and a devoted member of the Embry Riddle family."

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June 11, 2017

U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. James “Jim” V. Celani, Jr. (’97, DB)

U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. James “Jim” V. Celani, Jr. (’97, DB) passed away June 11, 2017, in San Diego, Calif., after being taken to a local hospital with gunshot wounds the night of June 10, 2017. Celani was shot in the chest, after an apparently unprovoked attack at the Westfield Horton Plaza mall that also left his cousin wounded.

Assigned to Naval Special Warfare (NSW) command headquarters, Celani joined the U.S. Navy in 1997 and was a career Naval Aviator with more than twenty years of service and numerous awards. He served in multiple aviation units as both an H-60B and C-12 pilot throughout his career. In 2000, Celani served with Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 51 (HSM 51) in Japan. In 2008, he transferred to the Naval Special Warfare Community and at Naval Special Warfare Command, Celani led and carried out pioneering work in NSW’s Unmanned Aerial System programs and acquisitions.

A memorial service was held June 16, 2017, to honor and remember Celani at the Naval Amphibious Base chapel in Coronado, Calif.

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May 29, 2017

Rita A. Ferencak (’95, PC)

Rita A. Ferencak (’95, PC) passed away May 29, 2017. Moving to Arizona in 1970, she was a successful real estate broker in Tucson for many years.

She relocated to Prescott, Ariz., where she graduated magna cum laude from Embry-Riddle with a bachelor’s degree in aviation business administration and was named "Outstanding Business Student." After earning her master’s degree in counseling, she worked for several charities including Catholic Social Services, Arizona Woman’s Education & Employment, and Stepping Stone Agency. She was also an academic counselor at Northcentral University. She is survived by her husband, Andrew, and four children.

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May 29, 2017

Anthony M. Ungaro (’56, MC)

Anthony M. Ungaro (’56, MC) passed away in Sarasota, Fla., on May 29, 2017. Born in Hartford, Conn., he earned his Aircraft Mechanic Certificate from Embry-Riddle in Miami, Fla. He spent 34 years working at Heublein Inc., in Hartford, Conn. A veteran of the Korean War, Ungaro was buried at Sarasota National Cemetery. He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Cynthia, and one daughter.

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May 14, 2017

George M. Noble, Jr. (’05, ’10, WW) passed away May 14, 2017, at the age of 38. Born in Burlington, Vt., he grew up in Ft. Myers, Fla. and joined the U.S. Air Force upon graduation from high school. He became a pneudraulic systems journeyman and later obtained his master’s degree from Embry-Riddle’s Worldwide Campus. He worked for UPS in Louisville, Ky. as an aircraft maintenance supervisor.

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May 11, 2017

Retired U.S. Navy Cmdr. Roberto Miguel Martinez (’93, DB) passed away May 11, 2017. He was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and grew up in Brooklyn, NY.  Martinez served in the U.S. Navy for more than 30 years, including service in Asia. He is survived by his wife Gina and two daughters.

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May 03, 2017

Alesia Dawn Thrift-Cottrell (’86, DB) passed away May 3, 2011. She was a resident of Lumberton, N.C. 

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April 29, 2017

James Fernando (’13, PC) passed away April 29, 2017. He earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and was an employee of ACSS in Phoenix, Ariz. 

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April 14, 2017

Anthony Tommasino (’03, WW)

Anthony Tommasino (’03, WW), 51, of Phoenix, Ariz., passed away on April 14, 2017, after a tragic accident. Born in Cleveland, Ohio, he served six years in the U.S. Navy where he learned aircraft maintenance. He earned a degree in aeronautical engineering at Embry-Riddle and worked the past 30 years in the aviation industry. He leaves behind his wife of 26 years, Roxanne, and two children.

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March 30, 2017

Lt. Eric W. Ferguson (’08, DB)

Lt. Eric W. Ferguson (’08, DB) passed away Mar. 30, 2017 in Yokosuka, Japan at the age of 31. Born in Chicago, he attended summer camp at Embry-Riddle and flew his first solo flight at age 17. As a university student at Embry-Riddle, he was named to the Dean’s List and was a member of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, the Sophomore/Junior Advisory Board and the Sport Compact Import Racing Car Club. He also attended Embry Riddle’s Study Abroad Program in Paris, France. After graduation, he was a pilot for Continental Connection and flew throughout Florida, the Bahamas and Cuba. After 9/11, Ferguson applied and was accepted into U.S. Navy Officer Candidate School (OCS) in Newport, RI. His naval career took him from San Diego to Japan and he rose through the ranks to Lieutenant. An only child, he is survived by his parents, many family members and his fiancee Annalyn. His mother Fay Ferguson created Allies of Innocence, a nonprofit that provides free grief and trauma counseling to survivors of gun violence in Chicago.

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March 30, 2017

Retired U.S. Navy Capt. Hoyt Porter Maulden (’43, MC), who was an Embry-Riddle Professor Emeritus, passed away March 30, 2017. Joining the Navy in 1942, he was designated a naval aviator in 1945 and served for 31 years on a variety of aircraft carriers. After retirement in 1973, he was a managing partner in a consulting firm and an instructor at Pasco-Hernando Community College and Florida Keys Community College. A Certified Financial Planner, he retired from Embry-Riddle in 1994 as Professor Emeritus of Financial Management. Hoyt is survived by his wife of 38 years, Sharon, and two sons.

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March 29, 2017

William Michael ‘Mike’ Grubbs (’84, DB), a 25-year veteran pilot of American Airlines, passed away March 29, 2017. According to news reports, he died after collapsing in the cockpit during a flight. Flight 1353 from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport was preparing to land in Albuquerque, N.M., when the captain declared a medical emergency. Medics boarded the plane but were unable to revive Grubbs, who was serving as first officer of the flight. A resident of Lebanon, Tenn., Grubbs is survived by his wife of 27 years, Helen, and one son.

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March 19, 2017

John Olsen (H '16)

John Olsen (H '16), who is a former Embry Riddle Trustee, an honorary alumnus of the university and a member of the Prescott Campus Board of Visitors, passed away March 19, 2017. As a longtime pilot and aviation enthusiast, Olsen served as an adviser, advocate and supporter for the creation of Embry-Riddle’s Prescott Campus.

He served as a U.S. Navy officer, mostly in the South Pacific, during World War II. He graduated from Colorado State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (now Colorado State University) with a degree in agronomy, was a member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity and earned a teaching certificate in vocational agriculture. Moving to the Prescott, Ariz., area, he developed the JCJ ranch in the Big Chino and, in 1972, his career shifted to farm management and consulting. He spent 16 years as an elected county supervisor and, in 1979, he helped start Olsen’s Grain.

He also served with the Chino Winds Natural Resource Conservation District, the board of Catholic Charities, the Elks Opera House Foundation Board, the regional hospital board, and was a long time member of Yavapai Cattle Growers. In 2005, he was named Prescott’s Man of the Year. In 2016, Olsen was awarded honorary alumnus status at Embry-Riddle during the OctoberWest Alumni Awards Dinner.

He is preceded in death by his wife Ann, who passed away in 2014, and is survived by four children.

Donations are being accepted to the “John Olsen Classroom Fund” by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University to permanently honor Olsen and his contributions to the Prescott Campus. The named classroom would be located in the STEM Education Center, currently under construction. Click here to donate.

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March 19, 2017

Henry Kurtz Weiser (’42, MC, Non-degree)

Henry Kurtz Weiser (’42, MC, Non-degree) of Rockville, Md., died March 19, 2017. He was a World War II veteran who served in the U.S. Army Air Corps and flew more than 24 different types of aircraft. He also flew the China-Burma Hump as a "Hump Pilot."  He is survived by his son, Greg ('73, DB), who is also an Embry-Riddle alumnus. Weiser was featured in Lift  in fall 2014.

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March 14, 2017

Capt. Andrew C. Becker (’07, DB)

Maj. Andrew C. Becker (’07, DB), who was a member of Embry-Riddle's Air Force ROTC Det. 157, died March 14, 2017, in the crash of a reconnaissance and surveillance aircraft during a training flight in New Mexico, according to the U.S. Air Force and related news reports. The 33-year-old married pilot from Novi, Mich., was one of three service members killed when the single-engine U-28A crashed near the Clovis Municipal Airport. Co-pilot 1st Lt. Frederick Dellecker, 26, of Ormond Beach, Fla., and Capt. Kenneth Dalga, 29, were also killed. All three were assigned to the 318th Special Operations Squadron at Cannon Air Force Base. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

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February 27, 2017

Daytona Beach Campus student Abbey Trinca

Daytona Beach Campus student Abbey Trinca, 21, passed away Feb. 27, 2017. Trinca came to Embry-Riddle in 2013, after graduating from the Maribyrnong Sports Academy in Melbourne, Australia. She was a student in the human factors program and an accomplished four-year letter winner for the Eagle’s golf team. She was a member of the housing and residence life staff at Embry-Riddle and a staff member for the athletic department’s game operations and facilities and weight room. A memorial service was held March 7, 2017, in the ICI Center to remember and celebrate Trinca’s life.

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February 22, 2017

Maj. Brian P. Murray (’11, WW)

Maj. Brian P. Murray (’11, WW) passed away Feb. 22, 2017, in St. Louis, Mo. Murray was a member of the Illinois Air National Guard as an aircraft commander in the KC-135 with three CENTCOM deployments. He had more than 15 years of military service. As a naval aviator, he flew the MH60S and T6 Texan II. In the civilian sector he was an airline pilot for Southwest Airlines. He is survived by his wife, Anne, and three children.

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February 13, 2017

Richard T. Carter (’94, DB) passed away Feb. 13, 2017, in Clearwater, Fla., from complications of leukemia. He was a 101st Airborne U.S. Army veteran.

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February 07, 2017

William “Bill” Robert Chadney (’10, WW)

William “Bill” Robert Chadney (’10, WW) passed away Feb. 7, 2017, at Eternal Hope Hospice Center in Griffin, Ga. Upon graduation from high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps and served in the Marine Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 2, VMAQ-2, MAG-14, at the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing at MCAS Cherry Point and received several citations and medals. Chadney also served as a member of the Marine Corps League Stephen W. Pless Detachment 1196. He used his Marine Corps training in aircraft mechanics to work for Delta Airlines. Chadney is survived by his wife of 30 years, Betsy, and one son.

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February 03, 2017

John E. Quicksall (’71, DB)

John E. Quicksall (’71, DB) passed away Feb. 3, 2017, at Bay Pines Veterans Administration Hospital. He served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam conflict and retired from Delta Air Lines as a flight captain after 30 years of service. He flew around the world and taught flying for Delta in Atlanta, Ga. In the Navy, he flew as navigator into hurricanes to take wind measurements. He is survived by his companion and caregiver, Dolores Kania, and two children.

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January 25, 2017

Richard E. Waddell, who was the former library director at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus, passed away Jan. 25, 2017. He served as library director at Embry-Riddle, until retiring in 2006. Waddell is survived by his wife Patricia and two children. A brief service was held Feb. 2 at the Embry-Riddle Center for Faith and Spirituality.

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January 18, 2017

Joseph F. Golinski, Jr. (’79, DB)

Joseph F. Golinski, Jr. (’79, DB) passed away Jan. 18, 2017 with his family by his side. Golinski served as a U.S. Army helicopter pilot during the Vietnam Era. He coached the Embry-Riddle baseball team 1978 - 1980 and coached Bethune-Cookman College baseball team from 1984 - 1985. He spent 15 years at the U.S. Postal Service and retired in 2000. He is survived by his wife of 44 years, Mary Grace, and a son. In lieu of flowers, donations are being accepted by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Athletics Department.

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January 15, 2017

T.J. Lees (’41, BFTS) passed away Jan. 15, 2017 in Kemble, Gloucestershire, United Kingdom. at age 93. His memorial service was held on Feb. 6, 2017, in Kemble Church.

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January 11, 2017

Deborah Butts (’01, DB; Former staff) passed away Jan. 11, 2017. Born in Winter Park, Fla., she moved to Daytona Beach as a child, attended Volusia County Community College, and later enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where she served for six years. Upon returning to Daytona Beach, Butts was hired by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University where she worked for 36 years, prior to retiring as the assistant director of Veteran Affairs in 2008. She relocated to Virginia Beach, Va. in 2015, where her daughter serves as a minister.

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January 07, 2017

Kenneth McNeil Armstrong (’54, MC)

Kenneth McNeil Armstrong (’54, MC) passed away on Jan. 7, 2017, surrounded by his family. He served in the U.S. Navy as an aircraft mechanic, and, after the service, he graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University at the top of his class. His love for helicopters brought him to work for Petroleum Helicopters in Lafayette, Waverly Growers Co-Op in Florida, Air Logistics in New Iberia and Arrow Aviation in Broussard. He is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Dora. As Armstrong requested, his body was donated to Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center.

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December 30, 2016

Michael “Kell” Ryan

Michael “Kell” Ryan, an Industry Advisory Board member for Embry-Riddle’s College of Business and a former Embry-Riddle Board of Visitors member, passed away Dec. 30, 2016. Ryan, who was the younger brother of the late Ryanair founder Tony Ryan, joined the airline in 1986 after many years with Aer Lingus and shortly before its successful relaunch as a budget carrier. Ryan, originally from Tipperary, Ireland, had lived and worked in the UK for many year, including serving as Aer Lingus manager at Heathrow Airport. He is survived by his wife Glenis and two daughters.

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December 21, 2016

Gary Lee DeWindt

Gary Lee DeWindt, who was a flight instructor at Embry-Riddle for 12 years and retired in 2012, passed away on Dec. 21, 2016. He is survived by his wife Lynda.

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December 08, 2016

Samuel Eugene Poole Jr. (’54, MC) passed away Dec. 8, 2016 in Tampa, Fla.

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November 30, 2016

Chief Warrant Officer 4 Richard Earl Dickson (’80, WW)

Chief Warrant Officer 4 Richard Earl Dickson (’80, WW) passed away Nov. 30, 2016 in Anthem, Ariz., after a six-year battle with stage 4 colon cancer. He served in the U.S. Army as an attack and scout pilot, test flight evaluator and aircraft maintenance officer, before retiring in 1996. During his military career, he received numerous medals and awards. He is survived by his two daughters. Donations may be made to the Veteran's Administration (homeless program), National Memorial Cemetery or Salvation Army.

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November 09, 2016

Retired U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Ralph M. Malcolm Jr. (’82, DB)

Retired U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Ralph M. Malcolm Jr. (’82, DB) passed away Nov. 9, 2016, in Alexandria, Va. Born in Panama, he moved to the United States in 1957. While a student at Embry-Riddle, he was an original founding member of the Brothers of the Wind, an African-American student organization established in 1974 to promote aviation in the minority community. After 20 years of service, he retired from the U.S. Coast Guard. He continued his aviation career, working for U.S. Air, Lockheed Martin, and as an aviation safety analyst with the Federal Aviation Administration. Malcolm is survived by his wife of seven years, Birtukan (Betty) and two sons. Interment was held at Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers or cards, the family is requesting donations to establish a memorial scholarship fund be sent to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, in memory of Ralph Malcolm Jr. Contributions may be mailed to the Office of Development, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, 600 S. Clyde Morris Ave., Eagle Alumni Center, Daytona Beach, FL 32114-3900. Checks should be made out to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and note "In Memory of Ralph Malcolm Jr." on the memo line. For additional information, contact AJ Smith, assistant director of development at (928) 777-4216.

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November 07, 2016

Alan Bruce (’41, BFTS) passed away on Nov. 7, 2016

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November 03, 2016

Retired U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sergeant Loura Lee Winkels (’07, WW)

Retired U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sergeant Loura Lee Winkels (’07, WW) passed away Nov. 3, 2016 in Converse, Texas at the age of 56. Born in Torrance, Calif., she joined the Air Force in 1978 and served 30 years.

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October 25, 2016

Robert A.

Robert A. "Bob" Hoover, who was an American aviation legend, World War II fighter pilot and a friend of Embry-Riddle, passed away Oct. 25, 2016, at the age of 94 in Los Angeles.

Called “the greatest stick-and-rudder man that ever lived," Hoover was a pilot who escaped Nazi captivity in a stolen German plane, tested supersonic aircraft with Chuck Yeager, trained military aviators and spent decades as a stunt pilot.

He flew more than 300 varieties of airplanes and knew virtually every significant figure in aviation history, including Orville Wright and Charles Lindbergh. He was enshrined in the National Aviation Hall of Fame in Dayton, Ohio, in 1988.

Taking flying lessons at 15, Hoover joined the Tennessee Air National Guard at 18. During World War II, he flew 58 missions as a fighter pilot with the Army Air Forces. He was shot down in 1944 and spent more than a year in a German prison camp before he escaped.

Leaving the military in 1948, he became a test pilot for General Motors, North American Aviation and North American Rockwell. He flew at air shows around the world, flying a yellow P-51 Mustang or white-and-green Shrike. Retiring from aerobatics in his late 70s, he piloted his last plane when he was 85.

His wife of 68 years, Colleen Humrickhouse, died in February 2016. He is survived by two children. 

Hoover published an autobiography, Forever Flying, in 1996 and a documentary about Hoover's life, Flying the Feathered Edge, premiered in 2014.

The Citation Jet Pilots (CJP) Association, in conjunction with the Bob Hoover Legacy Foundation, has provided scholarships in Hoover's name to students attending Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Numerous Embry-Riddle representatives, including Prescott Campus Chancellor Frank Ayers, attended the recent Bob Hoover "Celebration of Life", held at Clay Lacy Aviation in Van Nuys, Calif. Click here to view the memorial.

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October 11, 2016


Robert "Bob" Neubert (68, DB) passed away unexpectedly from natural causes on Oct. 11, 2016, in Connecticut. He worked as an aeronautical engineer at Pratt & Whitney in East Hartford, Conn., for 30 years. He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Marilyn, and two sons.

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October 04, 2016

William C. Russell III (’85, WW) passed away Oct. 4, 2016. He is survived by his wife of 35 years, Sue, and two sons.

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October 01, 2016


Harold "Hal" D. Cope, a longtime friend of Embry-Riddle, passed away in October 2016. A founding member of the Aviation Pioneers Association, Cope helped establish the Aviation History Project at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, which continues to document the stories of the “Non-sked Airlines” from the entrepreneurs, pilots and employees who sought to capitalize on a growing market. Hal’s efforts, along with others involved in the project, enabled the Non-skeds to be inducted into the San Diego Air and Space Museum’s Hall of Fame in November 2016. Cope served in airline management and aviation consultation in addition to flying as a commercial pilot over a 42-year career. In the 1960s, Cope fulfilled a longstanding dream of going to Kenya on a safari hunt; however, the late actor William Holden turned his hunting ambitions from gun to camera. Holden instilled in Cope the need to work with African wildlife conservation programs, which he supported and promoted throughout the remainder of his life. Cope enjoyed telling stories of his flying career and his work with well-known personalities of the era. “Bwana Hal,” as he was known, will be remembered for his passion for Africa, its animals and its people.     

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September 23, 2016

Kim Q. Habermann (78, DB) passed away Sept. 23, 2016, in Falls Church, Va.  He was a loyal donor to Embry-Riddle and created the Kim Habermann Term Scholarship at the Daytona Beach Campus' College of Business. 

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September 23, 2016

Gerald “Jerry” Zimmerman (’58, MC, Non-degree)

Gerald “Jerry” Zimmerman (’58, MC, Non-degree), who was launch team supervisor for Apollo 1, passed away Sept. 23, 2016. A veteran of the U.S. Air Force, he first worked with North American Rockwell on the Vigilante and OV-10 programs, followed by working with NASA on the Apollo Program.  Jerry was in charge of the command module of Apollo I at Kennedy Space Center.  He returned to Columbus, Ohio and worked with the B-1 and Space Shuttle programs while at Rockwell before retiring. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Joe Ann, and four children

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September 22, 2016

Col. Raymond J. Wienk (’44, MC)

Col. Raymond J. Wienk (’44, MC) passed away on Sept. 22, 2016 in Olympia, Wash. Born on a dairy farm in East Otto, NY, he served in World War II in the 20th Army Air Corps. He piloted B29 and B24 bombers in the 498th Bomb Group, Saipan, Asiatic-Pacific Theater. He retired as a Colonel from the Air Force Reserve after 32 years of service, serving many year as a liaison officer for the Air Force Academy. He flew for the Civil Air Patrol and he and his wife Phyllis, who passed away in 2013, ran the Niagara Frontier Air Force Association Scholarship Program. Wienk is survived by two children.

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September 19, 2016

Wayne W. Woolhiser (’01, WW) passed away Sept. 19, 2016. Born in Pereira, Colombia, he lived in Thailand, Pakistan, Greece, and Egypt, prior to moving to Oregon in the late 1960s, because his father worked in international construction. He worked for The Boeing Company for 29 years, retiring in 2008. He and his wife worked together in the avionics group on the V-22 Osprey Tilt-Rotor program at the Boeing Helicopters plant in Philadelphia, Pa. Near the end of his career, he was a systems engineer, concentrating on configurations in military and commercial applications in airplanes, bombers and weaponry. He is survived by his wife of 31 years, Karen, and one son.

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September 13, 2016

Wayne F. Bramwell (’89, DB)

Wayne F. Bramwell (’89, DB) passed away Sept. 13, 2016. He is survived by his two children.

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September 03, 2016

Vandon D. Johnson (60, MC, Non-degree) passed away on Sept. 3, 2016, from a ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm, after years of circulation problems. He spent time in the U.S. Navy, then attended Embry-Riddle's Miami Campus, where he earned an airframe and powerplant certificate. 

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August 29, 2016

Betty Jane France, a friend of Embry-Riddle, passed away Aug. 29, 2016. She was the founder of the NASCAR Foundation and wife of the late NASCAR founder Bill France Sr. France was known for her philanthropy, which included the creation in 2006 of the NASCAR Foundation, which supports hospitals and clinics, with a focus on its Speediatrics Children's Fund. It also awards the annual Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award to a NASCAR fan displaying charitable ideals.

the founder of the NASCAR Foundation and wife of the late NASCAR founder Bill France Sr., - See more at:

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August 18, 2016

Master Sgt. Selwyn G. Curtis ('82, WW)

Master Sgt. Selwyn G. Curtis (82, WW) passed away Aug. 18, 2016, after a battle with cancer. A U.S. Air Force veteran, he was the Air Force Junior ROTC instructor at Lakeland High School in Suffolk, Va. Curtis was also chaplain of the Hampton Roads Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club, of which he was one of the founders, and was the proprietor of Curtis Horsemanship.

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August 16, 2016

Robert Wayne Harsha

Robert Wayne Harsha, who is a retired Embry-Riddle Worldwide Campus faculty member, passed away Aug., 16, 2016, after a 10-month battle with prostate cancer complicated by pulmonary fibrosis. Born in Billings, Mont., Harsha grew up on the family ranch and joined the U.S. Air Force in 1968. He completed pilot training and then became a flight instructor. During his 24 years in the military, he was stationed at nine bases around the world and completed over 5,000 flying hours on four different types of planes. While in the Air Force, he completed his doctorate in education and began teaching at Embry-Riddle. With the rank of Lt. Colonel, Harsha retired from the military in 1991 and started a 27-year academic career at Embry-Riddle's Worldwide Campus. He  taught nearly 4,600 students at 38 different corporate and military facilities in 11 states and two foreign countries, before retiring in May 2015 as an associate professor in the College of Business. He is survived by his wife Heidi and five children.

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August 10, 2016

Rev. Russell R. White

Rev. Russell R. White, a friend of Embry-Riddle, passed away Aug. 10, 2016. He founded the Eagle Flight Squadron nonprofit organization, which led to a number of underprivileged youth in the New Jersey area seeking employment in the aviation industry and attending Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. White founded the program 35 years ago to encourage youth to develop trade, educational and manual skills related to aviation, while raising their grades in school. Of the Eagle Flight Squadron’s students, 19 have gone on to Air Force academies, 37 are commercial pilots, 190 attended aviation schools such as Daniel Webster College in New Hampshire and Embry-Riddle in Florida, and 259 are working in aviation-related positions, according to the organization’s website: White was inducted into New Jersey’s Aviation Hall of Fame for his leadership of the squadron. White was also the former pastor of Bethel Baptist Church in Orange, N.J., a former disciplinarian and truant officer at East Orange High School and one of the founding members of the East Orange Clergy Organization.

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August 04, 2016

Ralph Waldo "Wally" Emerson III (96, WW), a former faculty member at the Worldwide Campus in Oklahoma City, Okla., passed away on Aug. 4, 2016, in Midwest City, Okla. He retired as a lieutenant colonel after 20 years of service as a combat pilot in the U.S. Air Force. While serving, he was a survivor at the Pentagon on 9/11 and aided in the treatment of victims. At the time of his death, he served as director of aviation services with Keybridge Technology. He is survived by his wife, Joey Emerson, a son and a daughter.

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July 29, 2016

Andreas H. Wiedemann ('05, PC) passed away July 29, 2016, in Switzerland, after a courageous battle with cancer.  A dual major in engineering and air science, he was a flight instructor and standards pilot for many years. He is survived by his parents, Klaus and Minami, and girlfriend, Amber.

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July 27, 2016

Gerard “Jerry” T. Doyle ('79, DB)

Gerard “Jerry” T. Doyle ('79, DB) passed away suddenly on July 27, 2016, at his residence in Las Vegas, Nev. He was employed as a jet salesmen for Falcon Jet in Teterboro, N.J., from 1979-1980, and in 1980, he was the vice president of sales for Drexel Burnham in San Diego, Calif. In 1985, Doyle went to Hollywood, starring in Babylon 5. He had parts and stunts in many movies during the 1990s. In 2001, Doyle made a Republican run for Congress in California. In that same year, The Jerry Doyle Show started on radio and became nationally known. Doyle became the No. 6 political radio show host in America to this present day. In 2013, he created and was president of Epic Times, Las Vegas, Nev., a digital mass media company. Doyle is survived by his son, Matthew Doyle.

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July 10, 2016

Tech. Sgt. Sunny (Siler) Podobensky ('04, WW) passed away July 10, 2016, at Walter Reed National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., after a battle against melanoma. Joining the U.S. Air Force in 1997, she served as an aerospace physiologist and as an aircraft/aircrew safety and mishap officer and investigator.  Podobensky won multiple Air Force, Command, Wing, Group and Squadron awards throughout her career, plus served as the first female State Air Force Association president while stationed at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas. She deployed multiple times to Afghanistan and Iraq in support of operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. Podobensky was the recipient of the Meritorious Service Medal, NATO Medal, and numerous others. Podobensky is survived by her husband, Greg, and two sons.

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July 09, 2016

Eugene Coker ('86, WW) passed away July 9, 2016. He  retired from the U.S. Air Force after 23 years of service, including serving in Vietnam. Coker worked for United Airlines as an aircraft mechanic for 20 years. He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Ruth, and one son.

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June 24, 2016

Dawn Brooke Owens ('02, PC)

Dawn Brooke Owens ('02, PC)  passed away June 24, 2016, of cancer at age 36. A resident of Houston, Texas, she was a pilot and space policy expert, who had worked for NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration, and the White House’s Office of Management and Budget. In honor of Owens' life and professional contributions, a group of colleagues and friends established in 2016 the Brooke Owens Fellowship Program, a paid internship and mentorship program designed to inspire and train exceptional undergraduate women seeking careers in aviation or space exploration. The program is administered by The Future Space Leaders Foundation, a nonprofit 501(c)(3). 


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June 24, 2016

James Philip “Fibber” McKee ('58, MC) passed away June 24, 2016. He served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War and retired from Materials Handling Equipment Corporation in Fort Wayne, Ind. He is survived by his wife, Bonnie, and one son.

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June 23, 2016

Gonzalo “Zalo” Lopez-Garzón ('42, MC), believed to have been Embry-Riddle’s oldest living alumnus, passed away on June 23, 2016, at the age of 101. Originally from Argentina and later a resident of Miami, Fla., Lopez-Garzón was one of 526 students representing countries from all over Central and South America who attended Embry-Riddle in 1941-42 through the federally-funded Inter-American Aviation Training Program scholarship. Read about his life and his Embry-Riddle experience.

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May 25, 2016

Robert C. Sellers ('56, MC, Non-degree) passed away May 25, 2016 at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. He received his commercial pilot's license from Embry Riddle School of Aviation in Miami, Fla., in 1956. A founding member of the Delaware Valley Aviation Flying Club at Wings Field Airport in Montgomery County, he was a flying club member for more than 20 years. In 2008, he was honored by the FAA as a Master Pilot for more than 50 years of accident free flying. He is survived by his wife, Barbara, and three sons.

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May 19, 2016

Anna Christine

Anna Christine "Chris" Gohranson (’84, ‘00, WW) passed away May 19, 2016. She was a retired U.S. Navy Master Chief Petty Officer. Married to William Edgar "Bill" Gohranson, she is survived by three sons.

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May 17, 2016

Jesse R. Goodwin ('00, PC) passed away May 17, 2016, in a airplane crash in Mesa, Ariz. Goodwin, an A-320 first officer, was flying a WWII North American AT-6 warbird that crashed at Falcon Field. He was a commercial pilot for Mesa Airlines and America West, before joining US Airways/American Airlines. He was also a member of the Commemorative Air Force and Wings of Flight Foundation. He is survived by his wife, Katie.

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May 13, 2016

Harry Alex Senopoulos III ('15, DB) died May 13, 2016, while attending flight school in Pensacola, Fla. Second Lt. Senopoulos was a U.S. Marine commissioned through the Embry-Riddle Navy ROTC program in spring 2015. He is survived by his wife, Second Lt. Karissa E. Hewitt ('15, DB), who is in the Army Reserve and was commissioned through the Embry-Riddle Army ROTC in 2015. Rev. David Keck, university chaplain, and the Navy ROTC held a memorial service honoring Senopoulos on May 25, 2016, at the Center for Faith and Spirituality at the Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus.

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May 12, 2016

Janice L. McBreen (’81, PC) passed away on May 12, 2016, in Phoenix, Ariz. Enlisting in the U.S. Navy, she served as an air traffic controller in multiple locations, including Keflavik, Iceland. She left the Navy, earned her degree and was commissioned as an officer in the 161st Air National Guard. She traveled globally, was part of the first all-female refueling mission in 1984 and served during several conflicts. She retired from the U.S. Air National Guard in 2002 with the rank of major. For the past 15 years, she battled scleroderma, an autoimmune disease. She is survived by her son, Connor.

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May 03, 2016

James J. “Jim” Ballough Jr. (’04, WW) passed away May 3, 2016, after a seven-year battle with pancreatic cancer. Ballough was a vice president at Cavok, a division of Oliver Wyman Inc., in Keller, Texas, and had retired as the director of Flight Standards Service for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) with 27 years of service. A Vietnam veteran, he started his civil aviation career as an airframe and powerplant mechanic with Eastern Airlines, before becoming an FAA safety inspector. At the FAA, he served as principle maintenance inspector of US Airways and manager of the Eastern Region’s Technical Branch, before his promotion to director of the Flight Standards Service in Washington, D.C. He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Michele, and his two children, Lauren and James III.

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May 02, 2016

Debra Roob Costello (’01, WW) passed away on May 2, 2016. She lived in Virginia and was a pilot for UPS. She completed the U.S. Navy Aviation Officer Candidate School, and as a commissioned officer, she attended Navy Flight School and became a naval aviator. Serving in the Persian Gulf War during her 12-year career, she received multiple decorations. She is survived by her husband of 28 years, Patrick L. Costello.

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April 20, 2016

David P. Bjorneboe (’92, DB) passed away unexpectedly April 20, 2016, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., of complications from hemochromatosis. He worked for various aviation authorities in Florida: Miami-Dade Aviation Department, Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) as the aviation programs administrator covering Miami-Dade and Monroe counties, and Broward County Aviation Department as assistant to the aviation director. The last seven years he worked as a consultant in the transportation industry for FDOT and Miami-Dade Transit, and he was currently consulting with the Broward County Aviation Department. He loved the Bahamas and managed the Abaco Inn in Hopetown on Elbow Cay in the Abaco Island Chain.

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April 17, 2016

Dana G. Beyer ('85, WW) passed away April 17, 2016. Beyer, of Boynton Beach, Fla., served as district pastor for Trinity Church International in Lake Worth, Fla. He is survived by his wife, Debbie, and four children.

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April 01, 2016

William E. Pitts (’60, MC) passed away April 1, 2016 in Coral Gables, Fla. He worked in maintenance for United Airlines, then was a co-pilot for Northeast Airlines which is now Delta Airlines.  He retired after 41 years of service. 

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March 25, 2016

Col. Gary E. DeKay (’80, WW) passed away March 25, 2016, in Daytona Beach, Fla. DeKay served his country for 46-plus years, including more than 35 years as a member of the U.S. Army, and later as a civilian working for the Joint Chiefs of Staff and U.S. Southern Command, Miami, Fla.

DeKay served as a Master Army Aviator with nearly 9,000 total flight hours, including more than 1,800 combat flight hours during his two tours in Vietnam. He received numerous military awards and decorations.

He earned both a bachelor's and master's degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. DeKay retired in 2001 from military service and he retired in 2012 from civilian service. He is survived by his wife, Karla Key, and one daughter.

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March 25, 2016

Elizabeth “Betty” Nelson, who was an Embry-Riddle Professor Emerita, passed away on March 25, 2016, at age 92.

She was a faculty member in the English department at Bethune-Cookman College (now Bethune-Cookman University) in Daytona Beach, Fla., before joining Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus in 1966 as chair of the English department, which later became part of the humanities and social sciences department. She subsequently served as dean of women at Embry-Riddle and retired in 1989.

Nelson founded the local film society Cinematique, served in numerous capacities with the Friends of the Volusia County Library, and was the force behind Daytona Beach’s Sister Cities alliance with Campeche, Mexico. She was also an early member of the Daytona Beach chapter of the NAACP.

A May 28, 2016, remembrance gathering, held at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Daytona Beach, honored Nelson's life and her many friendships and accomplishments.

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March 20, 2016

Lt. Col. Tyson William Hummel (’93, PC) passed away March 20, 2016, after a long battle with thyroid cancer. He joined the U.S. Air Force in December 1993, commissioned through an ROTC scholarship at Embry-Riddle. He retired from the 432nd Wing, Creech Air Force Base, Inspector General office in 2014. Tyson had been a member of the Civil Air Patrol. He is survived by his two children.

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March 04, 2016

Henry "Ray" Raymond Bazo ('63, MC) passed away on March 4, 2016. He worked on several government projects, including the Saturn V rocket. He is survived by his wife Arline and five children.

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February 27, 2016

Ashley Marie Guindon ('10, DB) was killed in the line of duty on Feb. 27,  just one day after being sworn in as a police officer for Prince William County, Va.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Daytona Beach Campus held a memorial service for Guindon for alumni, students, staff, faculty and the local community on March 22 at the Center for Faith and Spirituality.

a bachelor’s degree in Aeronautics with minors in Psychology, Homeland Security and Aviation Safety. She also was in the U.S. Marines Corps Reserve while she was a student at Embry-Riddle. - See more at:

Guindon, 28, of Woodbridge, Va., formerly of Merrimack, N.H., earned a bachelor’s degree in aeronautics with minors in psychology, homeland security and aviation safety. She also served in the U.S. Marines Corps Reserve while she was a student at Embry-Riddle.

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February 07, 2016

Stephen D. Ford ('86, '88, WW) died suddenly on Feb. 7, 2016, at Griffin Hospital in Derby, Conn. Having served in the U.S. Army, he was the superintendent of operations at Sikorsky Memorial Airport, with more than 25 years of service. Ford served as president on the Board of Directors of Blackhorse 4 Heroes Inc. He is survived by his wife of 23 years, Robbin.

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February 06, 2016

Sami Almulhim (DB student) passed away from injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident over the weekend of Feb. 6-7, 2015. Originally from Saudi Arabia, he was a junior pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace and Occupational Safety.  He is survived by his wife, two children and many Embry-Riddle friends. His memorial service was held at the Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus' Center for Faith and Spirituality on Feb. 12.

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February 05, 2016

Jonathan Harrington (DB student), a senior majoring in unmanned aircraft systems science, died Feb. 5. He was a Marine Corps veteran and is survived by his three children and three grandchildren. The wake and funeral were held in Medford, Mass., and a Feb. 9 service was held at Embry-Riddle's Daytona Beach Campus in the Center for Faith and Spirituality.

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February 04, 2016

Edgar D. Mitchell (HonDoc '96), the Apollo 14 astronaut who was the sixth man to step foot on the moon, died Feb. 4 in South Florida. The Lunar Module Pilot on his 1971 trip into space, he collected rock samples and walked on the lunar surface during his nine hour visit with Commander Alan Shepard.

Mitchell received a degree in Industrial Management from the Carnegie Institute of Technology in 1952 before joining the U.S. Navy. While in the Navy, he completed his Doctor of Science degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1964 and was selected to be an astronaut in 1966.

He retired from NASA and the Navy in 1972 and  lived in Lake Worth, Fla., south of West Palm Beach. He is survived by five grown children.

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January 21, 2016

Sid Shelby Barling, Jr. (’71, DB) passed away January 21, 2016. He was one of the founding brothers of Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus’ Sigma Chi, Eta Iota chapter. He served four years in the U.S. Navy, then worked at the Tampa Fire Department. After college, he flew with Shawnee Airlines in Orlando. He obtained his General Contractor’s license in 1976, and he specialized in commercial construction. Barling is survived by his wife of 44 years Carole, and two children.

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January 16, 2016

Edward A. Curry, Jr. ('41, BFTS, Non-degree) passed away Jan. 16, 2016. He lived in Los Angeles, Calif.

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January 12, 2016

Christopher A. Pyle ('88, '95, DB) passed away Jan. 12, 2016. He lived in Broomall, Pa. Pyle was formerly employed as a commercial pilot and is survived by three children.

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January 06, 2016

Franklin T. Basham ('58, MC) passed away Jan. 6, 2015, in Oregon. He is survived by his wife Patricia.

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January 04, 2016

Charles H. Miller ('15, WW) passed away Jan. 4, 2016. He earned his Bachelor's degree while undergoing extensive treatment for cancer and even walked for his diploma in May 2015,  just a few days after he had ended chemo treatments, according to his wife Judith Miller.

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January 01, 2016

Erik J. West (‘75, DB) passed away Jan. 1, 2016.

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December 25, 2015

Demico O. Black ('04, DB) passed away Dec. 25, 2015. He lived in Englewood, N.J.

Born in Jamaica, Demico earned a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach and was a member of the Caribbean Students Association.

After college, Black became an ExpressJet intern, which led to his first job as an airline pilot at ExpressJet. In 2007, he was hired as a pilot at Continental Airlines. Black was a member of the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals, where he once served as the director of the organization's Pilots in School Program.

He is survived by his wife Aennika and three small children, Ariana, Joshua and stepdaughter Avoni.

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December 19, 2015

James Allan Terry, Jr. (’94, DB) passed away Dec. 19, 2015. A native of Nashville, he worked for AirTran/Southwest Airlines. He is survived by his wife of 18 years, Andrea, and two children.

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December 12, 2015

Charles W. "Jerry" Durkin ('58, MC) passed away Dec. 12, 2015, in Arizona.

He joined the U.S Army at age 17, where he served as a spy during the Korean War. Durkin was stationed in Alaska during the Korean War. He later moved to Florida to attend Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, where he finished first in his class. After graduating, he and his family moved to Columbus, Ohio, where Durkin became a corporate pilot for the Ohio Steel Company. The family later moved to Arizona, where Durkin worked as an airplane mechanic. After a few years, he joined Allied Signal where he would eventually direct the training school until his retirement in 1996.

He was predeceased by Kathleen Durkin, his wife of 60 years, who died Aug. 19, 2014. He is survived by five sons and three daughters.

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December 12, 2015

Retired U.S. Air Force Capt. Wendell G. Wilcox ('82, DB) passed away Dec. 12, 2015, at his home in Niceville, Fla.

Wilcox served in the U.S. Air Force, where he received training as a hydraulics/pneumatics specialist working on C-130 and F-4 Phantoms at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Ariz. He would later transfer to Beale Air Force Base in California and work on the SR-71 Blackbird.

Wilcox graduated with a degree in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle's Daytona Beach Campus and an ROTC commission in the U.S. Air Force as a 2nd lieutenant.

In 1984, Wilcox graduated in the top ten percent of his class from U.S. Air Force fighter pilot training at Williams Air Force Base in Mesa, Ariz.. He flew F-4 Phantoms for the 497th TFS at Taegu Air Base, Korea, the 37th TFS at George Air Force Base in California and the 90th TFS at Clark Air Base in the Philippines. He retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1999, after 20 years of service.

Wilcox is survived by Nicole, his wife of 38 years, and two daughters.

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December 10, 2015

Obong G. Ekanem ('85, WW) passed away Dec. 10, 2015, in Little Rock, Ark.

Born in Nigeria, he received his undergraduate degree from Philander Smith College and his master's degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He was working on his doctoral degree in international business at Walden University. Ekanem was a member of the Arkansas Association of Nigeria, where he served as president for six years.

He is survived by his wife, Debbie, and four children.

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December 10, 2015

Mortimer R. Feinberg, Ph.D. (HonDoc '96) died Dec. 10, 2015, in New York. He held an Honorary Doctor of Aviation Business Administration from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

An academic in the field of industrial psychology, he also served as a consultant and adviser to corporations and individuals worldwide. A professor emeritus of Baruch College of the City University of New York, Feinberg served as director of Advanced Management Programs, assistant dean, professor and former acting chairman of the psychology department and professor of management.

He was a popular lecturer, keynote speaker and conference leader for public and private corporations worldwide. Feinberg was the author of six books and numerous business articles and technical papers published nationally. He was also a guest on national radio and television programming. He is survived by his two sons.

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December 03, 2015

Nancy M. Graham ('42, MC) passed away Dec. 3, 2015. in Charlottesville, Va.

In 1941, she married John Winston Graham, an Army Air Corps pilot, who died in a training flight three months later.  Fulfilling a promise to him, she enrolled at the Embry Riddle School of Aviation in Miami, earned her commercial and flight instructor ratings in 1942 and was hired to train WWII pilots.

In the 1960s she earned commercial glider and helicopter ratings and became Whirly Girl #62 of the Women's Helicopter Pilots Association. Graham owned two Cessna airplanes and kept her CFI with instrument rating current most of her life.

She wrote articles for aviation magazines and other periodicals and published a short story in The New Yorker.

In 1980 at the age of 59,  she graduated from Georgetown University. In 1981, she earned her master's degree in the School of Languages in Arabic. She later enrolled in Arabic classes at the University of Virginia and Middlebury College in Vermont.

A collector of Italian, Spanish and German literature, Graham donated her collection of rare aviation books to the Beinecke Library at Yale and other institutions in her late husband's memory.

She is survived by two nieces and one nephew.

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December 01, 2015

Ralph J. Weiger (Former Board of Trustee), a longtime Embry-Riddle supporter and Board of Visitors member for the Prescott Campus, passed away Dec. 1, 2015.

Weiger was a U.S. Navy Air Corp. pilot in WWII. He studied electrical engineering at Purdue University and became an industry leader, known for his knowledge of electronics and expertise in marketing, new product sales and mergers and acquisitions.

Weiger became CEO/president of three companies, including Midas International Corporation, then later served as the president of the International Franchise Association. He was awarded its Hall of Fame Award in 2002 by President George Bush and was the president and vice chairman for Jiffy Lube and a director for Big O Tires. Weiger was featured in national publications, including a 1957 Business Week article and a 1977 Time magazine article called the "Midas Touch." In the late 1970's and early 1980's, he spent three years in Kuwait and became president, COO of Yusef A. Alghanim and Sons, a billion dollar trading company.

Weiger retired to Prescott, Ariz. where he lived for 22 years and received numerous awards for his leadership, volunteer work and philanthropy with local organizations. He also received an honorary doctorate from Purdue University and was honored in the Hall of Fame of the Sigma Chi Fraternity. Weiger is survived by his three grown children.

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November 22, 2015

James Burleigh Steffen, Jr. ('88, DB)  passed away on Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015.

He worked for Boeing Aircraft as an avionic contractor, then as a sub-contractor to Lockheed Martin working on offensive/defensive warfare systems. In 1999, he started his own company and worked as a sub-contractor for Sunstrand Corporation. In 2002, he worked for Lockheed Martin on offensive/defensive warfare systems and moved to Cambridge, England in 2005.

He spent eight years in England, working for Lockheed Martin as a lead systems engineer liaison with Marshall Aerospace supporting the Royal Air Force C130J for the operational/maintenance and upgrade programs. In 2013, he moved to Rosamond, Calif., to work at Lockheed Martin at Edwards Air Force Base as an electronic warfare systems engineer on the F-35 Advanced Fighter Flight Test Program.

He had hiked Mt. Kilimanjaro, Mt. Whitney and to the base camp of Mt. Everest. He is survived by four siblings.

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November 16, 2015

Brian L. Moore ('11, WW) passed away Nov. 16, 2015, in New Mexico. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2001 to 2006 and was the owner/operator of Moore Aviation in Graham and Wichita Falls.He is survived by his wife, Allison, and three children.

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November 07, 2015

David V. Zarling, Sr. (’83, DB) passed away Nov. 7, 2015. He served four years in the U.S. Marine Corps and worked in multiple trades for a few years, until he returned to the military and served the U.S. Navy.  Along with service to the Navy, Zarling worked as an aeronautical engineer for Lockheed Martin, until he retired in 2005. He is survived his wife, Judy, and his five children.

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October 23, 2015

Peter A. Gasper ('59, MC) passed away Oct. 23, 2015, after a 2 1/2 year battle with brain cancer. He served in the U.S. Air Force for four years, including two years stationed in Alaska. He worked for Delta Airlines as a lead aircraft mechanic for 33 years at the Philadelphia International Airport. Gasper is survived by his wife of 27 years, Joyce, and two sons.

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October 23, 2015

Danny R. Basinger ('64, DB) passed away Oct. 23, 2015.  He was retired from Delta Airlines after 37 years where he worked in air craft maintenance. He started work with Delta Airlines in 1965 in Kansas City, Mo. and later transferred to Charleston, S.C, Charlotte, NC and finally to Cincinnati/Northern KY International Airport in 1982. Survivors include his wife of 49 years, Catherine, and their two children.

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October 22, 2015

Dennis Ray McGee ('78, DB) passed away Oct. 22, 2015. He retired as the director of Daytona Beach International Airport, where he served for 31 years. He is survived by his wife Mary.

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October 16, 2015

Joshua M. Perras ('08, DB) passed away Oct. 16, 2015. He graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University as an air-traffic controller, and served as a controller and trainer at the air traffic control center in Hilliard until his passing.

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October 10, 2015

Ronald S. Rosenthal ('03,WW) passed away Oct. 10, 2015. He lived in Beavercreek, Ohio.

Rosenthal retired from government civilian service in 2012, having worked for the U.S. Air Force as a logistician for more than 30 years.After retirement, he worked for Bering Straits, a small business designing the next generation Air Force supply chain management information system. He is survived by his wife, Adrienne Rexroad, and five children.

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October 10, 2015

Jeffrey Luong ('11, DB) died on Oct 10, 2015, in an airplane crash in Volusia County, Fla.

Luong graduated in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Aviation Maintenance, with a minor in Aviation Safety. While attending Embry-Riddle, he was active in multiple organizations including the campus radio station WIKD 102.5 FM, Touch-N-Go Productions, First Generation Student Association, Broken Arrow Scenario Club, Jeep and 4X4 Club and Phi Delta Theta Fraternity.

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October 02, 2015

Capt. Jonathan J. Golden ('10, WW) died on Oct. 2, 2015, in a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft crash at Jalalabad Airfield in Afghanistan.

Worldwide Campus student Staff Sgt. Ryan Hammond was also among the airmen killed. The incident is under investigation.

"Our thoughts are with the families of Capt. Golden and Staff Sgt. Hammond," said Worldwide Chancellor Brad L. Sims. "We are grateful for the sacrifices these airmen made for our country, and it was a privilege to support them in their education. These young men and their loved ones will always be part of our Embry-Riddle family."

According to the Department of Defense, both men were assigned to the 39th Airlift Squadron at Dyess Air Force Base in Texas. Capt. Golden earned his bachelor’s degree in professional aeronautics in 2010 through the Robins Campus.

Golden, who lived in Camarillo, Calif., is survived by his wife, Danielle, and two children.

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October 02, 2015

Raymond Lance Hupp (’56, MC)

Raymond Lance Hupp (’56, MC), 78, passed away Oct. 2, 2015, at his home. He retired from Piedmont Airlines after 30 years of service. As a veteran of the Air National Guard, he also worked on airplanes. He is survived by his wife Judy and two daughters.

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October 02, 2015

Staff Sgt. Ryan Hammond (WW student) died on Oct. 2, 2015, in a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft crash at Jalalabad Airfield in Afghanistan.

Capt. Jonathan J. Golden (‘10, WW) was also among the airmen killed. The incident is under investigation.

"Our thoughts are with the families of Capt. Golden and Staff Sgt. Hammond," said Worldwide Chancellor Dr. Brad L. Sims. "We are grateful for the sacrifices these airmen made for our country, and it was a privilege to support them in their education. These young men and their loved ones will always be part of our Embry-Riddle family."

According to the Department of Defense, both men were assigned to the 39th Airlift Squadron at Dyess Air Force Base in Texas. Staff Sgt. Hammond was pursuing a bachelor’s degree in technical management through the Dyess Campus.

Hammond, originally of Moundsville, W.Va., lived in Texas with his wife Holly.

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September 30, 2015

Heather M. Martin-Demichina ('08, '10, DB) passed away Sept. 30, 2015, in Evergreen, Colo. She is survived by her husband Nick and a son.

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September 25, 2015

Mark E. Lemmer ('69, DB) passed away Sept. 25, 2015. He worked as a commercial airline pilot in 1969 with United Airlines and retired in 2001 after 32 years of flying. He has three grown children.

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September 17, 2015

Colin M. Rainey ('12, DB) passed away Sept. 17, 2015, in Ormond Beach, Fla. He was a Marine Corps veteran and former flight instructor for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. His spouse, Beverly Rainey, who was also a former university staff member, preceded him in death on June 29, 2015.

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September 14, 2015

Paul M. Estes ('71, DB) passed away Sept. 14, 2015 in Florida.

 He earned his degree in aeronautical engineering from Embry-Riddle, then worked for nine years for Square D. He moved back to the Daytona Beach area and worked for Economy Electric for several years before starting his own business as a professional electrical engineer and consultant. Estes is survived by his wife, Pamela J. Estes and one grown daughter.

He earned his degree in aeronautical engineering from Embry-Riddle. After a nine-year career with Square D that took Paul and his then-wife, Sharon, and their only child, Sherry, away from the Daytona Beach area, the family returned. Paul worked for Economy Electric for several years before starting his own business as a professional electrical engineer and consultant. One of Paul's mottos was "Work hard, play hard," and although he was dedicated to his work, he also loved the beach and entertaining friends and family with his cooking and hospitality. There was little that Paul didn't find humorous, and he was known for his creative stories, both written and spoken. The Paul we remember will be greatly missed. He is survived by his wife, Pamela J. Estes; his daughter, Sherry Estes Bithell (Thomas Bithell); his granddaughter, Alexandra Bithell; and Pam's granddaughter, Alyssa Rogers. Memories of him will survive with the countless others whose lives he touched. - See more at:
He earned his degree in aeronautical engineering from Embry-Riddle. After a nine-year career with Square D that took Paul and his then-wife, Sharon, and their only child, Sherry, away from the Daytona Beach area, the family returned. Paul worked for Economy Electric for several years before starting his own business as a professional electrical engineer and consultant. One of Paul's mottos was "Work hard, play hard," and although he was dedicated to his work, he also loved the beach and entertaining friends and family with his cooking and hospitality. There was little that Paul didn't find humorous, and he was known for his creative stories, both written and spoken. The Paul we remember will be greatly missed. He is survived by his wife, Pamela J. Estes; his daughter, Sherry Estes Bithell (Thomas Bithell); his granddaughter, Alexandra Bithell; and Pam's granddaughter, Alyssa Rogers. Memories of him will survive with the countless others whose lives he touched. - See more at:

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September 06, 2015

Richard Cook ('69, DB) passed away from complications following a heart attack on Sept. 6, 2015. He was one of the original founders of the first social fraternity at Embry-Riddle, Pi Sigma Phi (which later merged with Delta Chi). Retired from Genworth Financial, he was an active amateur radio operator and had served on the Coast Guard Auxiliary. He lived in Ashland, Va., and is survived by his wife of 46 years, Linda, and a daughter, Lauren.  

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September 06, 2015

Torrey Barnes (DB student) passed away Sept. 6, 2015, from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident near the Daytona Beach Campus. Barnes, who was from Buffalo, NY, was a junior at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus majoring in aeronautical science.  

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September 04, 2015

Donald G. Hammonds ('87, WW) passed away on Sept. 4, 2015.

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September 03, 2015

Patrick Brent Gustin ('05, DB) died on Sept. 3, 2015, from injuries sustained in an automobile accident. He was a captain with Reva Air Ambulance Service. The company grounded their entire fleet of aircraft on Sept. 8, in his memory. Born in Italy, Gustin lived in Plantation, Fla. He earned a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science and an A&P (Airframe and Powerplant) certificate from Embry-Riddle. He loved to fly and also enjoyed building cars and motorcycles. He is survived by his parents, Mike and Cindy, and his brother and best friend, Sean.

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September 03, 2015

Daniel A. Bloomfield (‘92, ‘99, WW) passed away Sept. 3, 2015. He lived in Merritt Island, Fla.

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August 25, 2015

Khrystyna Gavryushenko (PC student) passed away Aug. 25, 2015, from injuries sustained in a multi-car collision in Prescott, Ariz. Gavryushenko, who was from Oxnard, Calif., was a sophomore at Embry-Riddle’s Prescott Campus and majoring in aviation business administration. She was president of the Golden Eagles Archery Club and a member of the Air Line Pilots Association’s Aviation Collegiate Education Club.

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August 19, 2015

John Broome ('41, BFTS, Non-degree)passed away Aug. 19, 2015, in the United Kingdom. In 1941, he trained as a pilot at Embry-Riddle's aviation school at Clewiston, Fla.

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August 19, 2015

James “Jimmy” Barry Dodge ('72, DB) died on Aug. 19, 2015, in Fort Pierce, Fla. Born in Albany, NY, he was the owner of Dodge Plumbing. He had his private pilot’s certificate and was also an avid motorcyclist and boater. Survivors include his wife of 42 years, Carolyn Daniel Dodge, and two children. 

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August 15, 2015

Daniel A. Pinkham ('77, DB) passed away Aug. 15, 2015.

He was a full time missionary with Africa Inland Mission for 10 years, serving as the chief engineer of their aircraft fleet in Nairobi, Kenya.

He joined Wycliffe Bible Translators in 1992, serving at the JAARS Center in Waxhaw, N.C.  in various capacities, and as chapel speaker for Csehy Summer School of Music, where he was also a former president of the board.

Pinkham  is survived by his wife, Sharon Ponyik Pinkham and two grown sons.

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August 09, 2015

Dr. Ray J. Kerry ('41, BFTS, Non-degree) passed away Aug. 9, 2015, in the United Kingdom.

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August 05, 2015

Harry James Geraty ('85, WW) passed away Aug. 5, 2015. He served in the U.S. Navy for 28 years, retiring as a Master Chief Petty Officer in 1975. He then continued his career with the Department of Defense Civil Service. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Corinne, and six of his seven grown children.

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August 01, 2015

Thomas W. Polec ('98, WW)  passed away Aug. 1, 2015.

He worked for Garrett, Allied Signal and Honeywell for more than 30 years, plus was employed by the Phoenix Suns, Arizona Diamondbacks and Barrett Jackson. Polec is survived by his wife Cindy and five sons.

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August 01, 2015

Jim A. Moxom ('44, BFTS, Non-degree) passed away in 2015 in the United Kingdom. In 1941, he trained as a pilot at Embry-Riddle's aviation school at Clewiston, Fla.

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July 22, 2015

Gerald S. Penberthy (’69, DB) passed away July 22, 2015 in Sanford, Fla. He was a paratrooper in the 101st Airborne Division for the U.S. Army and an instrument rated pilot, who enjoyed flying privately. He is survived by a son and a daughter. 

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July 16, 2015

Gregg Zimmerman ('90, DB) passed away July 16, 2015. Born in Scotland, he grew up in Ohio and served in the U.S. Air Force. After receiving many commendations and medals during his 10 years of service, he was discharged as a Captain and Aircraft Commander. After leaving the military, Zimmerman continued his career in information technology, as a caterer, a classic Shelby Mustang restoration mechanic, and an asset protection agent. He loved cars, particularly Ford Mustangs and Austin-Healeys, and flying airplanes. He is survived by his wife Esther and his son. 

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July 15, 2015

Eric J. Kunins ('08, WW) passed away on July 15, 2015.

He served in the U.S. Air Force for six years, including a tour in Afghanistan. Kunins received his Bachelor of Science degree in Airport Management from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and was a flight simulator technician for US Airways.

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July 13, 2015

Joseph C. Miles (‘44, MC, Non-degree) passed away July 13, 2015 in Georgia. 

Miles was director emeritus of the Institute of Technology, Northrop University, Los Angeles, Calif. and a board member of the Northrop-Rice Foundation in Houston, Texas. He was a decorated fighter pilot and flight commander in the U.S. Air Force serving in World War II and the Korean War.

He is survived by his wife, Phyllis Hunt Miles, and two grown children. 

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July 06, 2015

John B. Wing (Former Board of Trustee) passed away July 6, 2015, at age 68.

Wing graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1968 and served in Vietnam from 1968 through 1973. A pilot and aviation commander, he was recalled to active duty in 1982 for classified operations in Central America. 

Wing received an M.B.A. from Harvard University in 1980 and graduated with high distinction as a Baker Scholar. He was an investor and director with Jim Koch of the Boston Beer Company and was involved with several corporations with his Harvard classmates related to international infrastructure, domestic oil and gas investments, and the alternative asset industry.

After graduation, Wing worked for General Electric, was the principal architect for Enron's power development business and was recognized as a leader of the independent power industry. The chairman and founder of the Wing Group, he led the development of multi-billion dollar power projects worldwide.

After selling the Wing Group, he founded with his son, Brian, Wing Aviation, a full service aviation company serving the corporate and commercial markets.

He also founded Operation Grateful Nation, which raised and donated money for veterans, plus provided mentoring and compassion.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Operation Grateful Nation, P.O. Box 132858, The Woodlands, Texas 77393. A private celebration of his life was held on July 10 for family and friends. Wing was laid to rest at West Point.

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July 04, 2015

Professor Emeritus Grover Frederick “Fred” Mirgle ('81, DB), former chairman of the Aviation Maintenance Science (AMS) department at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus, passed away July 4, 2015, at age 70.

“It was very sad to hear of Fred’s passing,” says Chuck Horning, present chairman of the AMS department. “I consider myself fortunate to have had the chance to work alongside him prior to his retirement. The current success of the Aviation Maintenance Science department is due in no small part to his efforts, vision and dedication.”

Born Nov. 21, 1944, in Greenville County, S.C., Mirgle served in the U.S. Air Force from 1962 to 1966 as a missile maintenance technician. He joined Embry-Riddle in 1976 as a professor and administrator in the AMS department. A former student at Embry-Riddle (1968-69), he earned his Federal Aviation Administration Airframe and Powerplant certificate in January 1970. As an employee, he completed an associate degree in aviation maintenance technology in 1981. In addition to being an aircraft mechanic, Mirgle was an experienced pilot in a wide variety of aircraft.

Among his accomplishments at Embry-Riddle, he was instrumental in getting the AMS department named in honor of Charles Taylor, the main mechanic for aviation pioneers Orville and Wilbur Wright.

“He always felt that the Wright Brothers got all the credit for the first flight,” says University Archivist Kevin Montgomery, who was also a friend of Mirgle’s. “As a mechanic, he knew that the flight would never have taken place without the engine Charles Taylor designed and built. The reason no one flew before 1903 was because there was no engine with sufficient power-to-weight ratio to make the first flight possible. It was Charles Taylor’s ingenuity that made it happen. Fred felt it was important to recognize that fact.”

An advocate for the preservation of aviation history and aviation education, Mirgle was famous for shaking up the classroom with unique learning opportunities. “He was able to bring a Wright Flyer simulator to campus one year; and another time, he arranged with a New York museum to allow his students to restore some very rare radial engines from a 1929-30 Velie Monocoupe in the museum’s collection,” Montgomery says. The Velie Monocoupe had belonged to the original Embry-Riddle Company, and at Mirgle’s urging, the museum repainted the Embry-Riddle logo on the aircraft. “He did a lot to put Embry-Riddle’s AMT program on the map,” Montgomery adds.

During most of the 1990s, Mirgle represented the AMS department on the Faculty Senate. He also served several years as a faculty representative on the Embry-Riddle Board of Trustees. In honor of his contributions to the university, he was awarded professor emeritus status. He retired in 2009 and was a resident of Pelzer, S.C. when he died.

“During his 33 years at Embry-Riddle Fred touched the lives of thousands of students. There is little doubt that they all benefited from his wisdom and mentorship,” Horning says.

Fred is survived by his wife, Joyce Elizabeth Barnes Mirgle; mother, Wilma Elizabeth Woods Kissimon; sons, Michael Mirgle and Douglas Mirgle Sr.; stepfather, Alexander John "A.J." Kissimon; sisters, Susan Kissimon Del Priore and Jan Kissimon Stitt; six grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

A memorial service was held July 10 at Oak Hill United Methodist Church in Belton, S.C. Condolences may be left at Donations may be sent to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Aviation Maintenance Science department, c/o Chairman Chuck Horning, 600 S. Clyde Morris Blvd. Please make the check payable to Embry-Riddle and indicate that it’s for the “Fred Mirgle AMS Scholarship Fund."

Please make the check payable to Embry-Riddle and indicate that it’s for the “Fred Mirgle AMS Scholarship Fund.” - See more at:"

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July 03, 2015

Maj. Fredrick M. Harker, USA, (Ret.) ('63, MC) passed away July 3, 2015

He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Lola Grace Bowman Harker and five grown children.

A member of the U.S. Army since 1946, Harker retired in 1973 with the rank of Major. He was a Korean and Vietnam War Veteran and an early helicopter pilot, who trained many helicopter pilots for the U.S. Army at Forts Wolters and Rucker. He served two tours in Vietnam himself as a Medevac helicopter pilot.

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June 26, 2015

Robert B. Kuba ('51, MC) passed away June 26, 2015.

He spent 44 years with American Airlines as a flight engineer, and served as a corporal in the Army during World War II. Kuba is survived by his wife of 62 years, Alice, and five children.

he is survived by his wife, Alice (n‚e Pulaski) after 62 years of marriage. Bob and Alice also have five children, - See more at:

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June 22, 2015

Gary A. Peterson ('86, '88, DB) passed  away June 22, 2015. 

He graduated with honors in Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus' initial class of master's students and met his wife, Christine DeSain, who was a librarian on campus.

After working for LoPresti Piper in Vero Beach, Fla., he established his own business, Peterson Services Inc., which provided aeronautical engineering consulting to individuals and companies. He is survived by his wife, Christine, and two sons.

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June 21, 2015

James L. Howell ('91, WW) passed away June 21, 2015.

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June 17, 2015

Bonnie M. Morrison (’05, WW) passed away on June 17, 2015.

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June 09, 2015

James   H. "Jim" Morris (‘97, WW) passed away June 9, 2015 in Tennesse. A retired U.S. Navy Petty Officer First Class, he served 21 years in the Navy and was a 20-year employee of FedEx, where he was a senior router scheduler. He is survived by his wife of 25 years, Mary Elizabeth "Beth" Morris, and two daughters.

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June 08, 2015

Terrell Linda Thomas - Harmon (‘81, PC) passed away June 8, 2015. Terrell graduated summa cum laude from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Ariz. and worked for Martin Marietta on the Space Shuttle Team at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. She moved to Arizona and the last 19 years she worked as the manager of her family business. She is survived by her husband, Daryl.

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June 06, 2015

Leslie C. Howard ('93, WW) passed away June 6, 2015.

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May 25, 2015

Dale D. Tassell (’68, DB) passed away May 25, 2015. He is survived by his spouse Michael D. Henry and his daughter. 

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May 24, 2015

Donald C. Bryan ('54, MC) passed away May 24, 2015.   

He served in the Merchant Marine in 1949 and the U.S. Army from January 1951 until November 1952. He entered NACA 1957 flight research which changed to NASA in 1958 and served on Project Mercury from 1959-1962. In 1986, Bryan  retired as head of the Research Aircraft Section.

Bryan is survived by his wife of 11 years, Betty Ann Bryan, and three children.

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May 22, 2015

Bryan W. Schafer (‘79, DB) and his wife Nancy A. Schafer were killed in an accident in east Tennessee. A sports utility vehicle crossed into the opposite lane of traffic and struck the couple's motorcycle head-on, plus three other motorcycles, according to a Knoxville (Tenn.) News-Sentinel story.

With 30 years of experience in the aviation insurance industry, Schafer was an aviation practice leader at BancorpSouth Insurance Services, Inc. He earned a Bachelor's of Science degree in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and was a commercially licensed, multi-engine and instrument rated pilot and an advanced and instrument ground instructor. Schafer also holds a Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) designation. Brian and Nancy were the parents of six children.

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May 21, 2015

Thomas R. Drake ('69, DB) passed away at his Crest, Calif. home on May 21, 2015 after an 18 month battle with brain cancer. He served from 1963 to 1966 as an aircraft mechanic with the U.S. Army. Upon completion of his military service in 1966, he attended Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, where he attained his aeronautical engineering degree in 1969.

He worked in California for Douglas Aircraft Company as a design engineer, then the Department of Defense at the Naval Engineering Support Office, North Island as part of the F/A-18 Hornet Engineering Team. In 1981,  Drake and his business partners founded National Technologies Inc., a defense contracting firm, where he served as president and chief operating officer.

He served on the board of directors for Make a Wish, San Diego, and was past chairman of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. He is survived by his wife Patricia Stewart Drake, two daughters and seven grandchildren.

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May 09, 2015

Clarence C. Aycock ('98, WW) passed away on May 9, 2015 in Michigan. He was an engineer working for the government and served as a lay minister for several churches. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Patricia, and three grown children.

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May 02, 2015

Shawn Ryan Adelgren, age 20, passed away on May 2, 2015. 

He was a resident of Monument, Colorado for 10 years.  He was an Army ROTC cadet and student at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona.

Adelgren was born on January 31, 1995 in Albuquerque, New Mexico to Russell Adelgren ('89, PC)  and Dee (Zappola) Adelgren ('89, PC), who currently reside in Monument. His brother Paul is also a student at the Prescott Campus.

Shawn was very fond of the outdoors.  He enjoyed climbing mountains, jeeping, hiking, camping, fishing, hunting, snowshoeing, skiing and snowboarding.  He also enjoyed the Army and was extremely proud to be an ROTC cadet where he loved his fellow cadets and cadre.  He recently finished his sophomore year at Embry-Riddle where he was studying Global Security and Intelligence Services with a minor in the Chinese language.  He was a member of the Catholic Church on campus and of Saint Peter Catholic Church in Monument, Colorado.  He attended Palmer Ridge High School, graduating in 2013.

He is survived by his parents, Russ and Dee; his siblings Paul, Pamela, Joshua, Jacob, and Dean; and his grandparents George and Gorda Adelgren and Dominick and Maureen Zappola.

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April 30, 2015

Matthew C. Goodshaw (‘10, WW), of Huntington Beach, Calif., passed away April 30, 2015. He was an engineer at Boeing in Southern California for more than 18 years. He is survived by his wife of 13 years Amy Noelle.  

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April 30, 2015

Claude Thomas “Tommy” Redmon (’61, MC) passed away April 30, 2015. He enjoyed a 51 year aviation career with Piedmont Airlines in Winston Salem, NC and served six years in the U.S. Army Reserves. He received both the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award and the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award from the Federal Aviation Administration. He enjoyed piloting the fifteen airplanes he rebuilt as a hobby. Redmon is survived by his wife of 51 years, Margaret W. Redmon and two daughters.

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April 27, 2015

Christopher Richard "Ricky" Hope (‘10, DB), of West Newton, Penna., passed away April 27, 2015. 

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April 13, 2015

Lt. Col. David  R. Lambert, USAF, Ret. ('84, '85, WW) passed away April 13, 2015.

A U.S. Air Force veteran who retired after 24 years, he had 5,000 flying hours as a Air Force pilot.

Lambert is survived by his wife of 37 years, Elizabeth Lambert, and two grown children.

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April 11, 2015

William O. Wiley ('56, WW) died April 11, 2015. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps and received the Purple Heart for wounds inflicted at Hanchun-ni, Korea in 1951. With degrees in aeronautical engineering and chemistry, Wiley worked for Experiment Incorporated in Richmond, Va., developing advanced missile propulsion systems for the U.S. Navy. He became vice president at Texaco’s New York headquarters, then later worked for Consumat Systems, designing green incineration and municipal energy from waste systems. He also had his own consultancy, advising domestic and international clients on energy and EPA issues. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Elizabeth Ann Poff, and two sons. 

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April 08, 2015

Juanita E. Sinclair (’84, DB) passed away April 8, 2015.

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April 01, 2015

Robert “Bob” A. Matthes (‘83, PC) passed away at his home on April 1, 2015. He enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in Korea. He completed his bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science at Embry-Riddle’s Prescott Campus and was a pilot at the Norfolk Airport in Norfolk, Neb. He later worked in the construction business and as a truck driver in Nebraska and Tennessee. Survivors include his wife Joanie Roettele and three children.

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March 30, 2015

Lt. Col. Brian P. Burns (‘95, WW), 53, passed away on March 30, 2015.

A U.S. Air Force Desert Storm veteran, Funeral Mass, he  flew C-141s and was a pilot trainer on T-38's and T-1's. He served active duty starting in 1984 and then was a reservist until 2012. Burns served on both Laughlin Air Force Base in Texas and Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colo. He is survived by his wife Ellen and three children.

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March 20, 2015

Charles O. Moeller, Jr. (’15, WW)

Charles O. Moeller, Jr. (’15, WW) passed away Mar. 20, 2015. He served in the U.S. Air Force, later worked for Lockheed Martin and was currently employed at an instructor with the U.S. Dept. of Defense. He is survived by his wife of 15 years, Karen, and his son.

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March 20, 2015

Stephen L. Wood (‘93, WW) passed away Mar. 20, 2015 at his parents' home in Yakima, Wash.

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March 19, 2015

Jessica E. Olmstead ('00, PC) passed away on Mar. 19, 2015. She was born and raised in Prescott, Ariz., and obtained an degree from Embry-Riddle in Science and Technology of Globalization with an emphasis on Environmental Issues.


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March 13, 2015

Joseph G. Kendall (‘91, DB) passed away Mar. 13, 2015 in North Carolina. 

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March 11, 2015

Mary B. Thomas ('00, '05, DB) passed away March 11, 2015, after a long illness. She worked at Embry-Riddle for approximately 23 years.

She started at the Worldwide Campus and then worked in the flight department at the Daytona Beach Campus. She started as a records specialist in the Registrar’s office, then was promoted to a graduation evaluator and eventually manager of graduation evaluations. She earned a bachelor's degree in business administration and a master's degree in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle.

She worked part-time at Sally’s Beauty Supply and enjoyed sewing. She was from Michigan and is survived by her husband, Manny, and three brothers.

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March 10, 2015

David O. Kerr (’15, WW) passed away Mar. 10, 2015.

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February 23, 2015

Clarence E. O'Bryan ('72, DB), 70, of Louisville, Ky., passed away Feb. 23, 2015. He was retired from Fischer Packing Co. and a Vietnam War veteran of the U.S. Air Force. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Gloria, one son and one daughter.

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February 21, 2015

Albert E. Isaacs ('67, DB, Non-Degree)   passed away Feb. 21, 2015 in Canada. Born in Guyana, he was a pilot at Guyana Airways, then immigrated to Canada in 1975. He worked at Bombardier Inc. as a test pilot, then with Flight Safety Canada as a pilot instructor. He is survived by his wife, Judy, and two children.

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February 14, 2015

Ralph F. Gilnack (‘53, MC) passed away Feb 14, 2015 in Connecticut. He served during the Korean War in the U.S. Air Force as a Staff Sgt. 773 Aircraft Control and Warning Squad Division 26th Air Division stationed at Montauk Point Long Island. He was employed for many years at the Bristol Company and Waterbury Farrell. He is survived by his wife of 14 years, Janet, and four children.

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February 02, 2015

Claude A. Samuels Jr. ('83, unknown campus) passed away Feb. 2, 2015 at age 51.

He was a senior project manager/principal specialist for business development at Astornet Technologies and former director of airport security at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport.

Mr. Samuels joined BWI in 1985 as assistant airport manager, airport operations manager, and subsequently held a variety of director positions with the airport, including for the office of transportation and terminal services, office of field and landside operations, office of public safety, and maintenance. In 2009, Mr. Samuels joined Astornet Technologies, where he worked until his death.

A memorial fund has been set up to assist Mr. Samuels' two daughters with college expenses. Donations can be sent to M&T Bank, Attn: Karen Perch, 910 S. Richland Ave., York, PA 17403. Checks should be made payable to Claude A. Samuels Jr. Memorial Fund.

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January 31, 2015

Gaylord K. Vasconcellos (’81, WW) passed away Jan. 31, 2015. Receiving his Naval Aviator Wings of Gold in 1953, he served in the United States Marine Corps Reserve from 1953 until1965 and was a captain at the time of his discharge. He worked as a pilot for Pacific Airlines, World Airways and Air America. He had a long career as a commercial pilot with TWA, retiring in 1991. He is survived by his four children.

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January 22, 2015

Thomas A. Mattee ('08, WW), 52, of Stockbridge, Ga., passed away Jan. 22, 2015. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, he served  as an aircraft mechanic at Naval Air Station South Weymouth for four years, then worked in aircraft maintenance at Delta Airlines for 28 years until his passing. During his time at Delta, he received his bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering from Embry Riddle. He is survived by his wife, Deborah, and one daughter.

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January 19, 2015

Jerry L. Brantley ('83, WW) passed away Jan. 19, 2015, after a brave battle with colon cancer. He received a bachelor's degree  in professional aeronautics from Embry-Riddle's Worldwide Campus at Fort Bragg, N.C.He was a retired Army pilot, as well as a North Carolina State Employee. In the Army, he served two tours of duty in Vietnam as a combat helicopter pilot. He also served in the National Guard. He is survived by his wife, Margie Parker Brantley, and one son.

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January 13, 2015

Sir Jack Hayward ('41, BFTS, Non-degree), 91, was born in Dunstall, Wolverhampton, UK. He passed away Jan. 13, 2015. In 1941, he volunteered for the Royal Air Force and trained as a pilot at Embry-Riddle's aviation school at Clewiston, Fla. He was a philanthropist and British patriot who lived most of his life in the Bahamas.Click here to link to his obituary.

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January 12, 2015

Arthur S. Rushworth ('41, BFTS, Non-degree) passed away Jan. 12, 2015. Born in England, he joined the Royal Air Force, became a pilot and was trained by Embry-Riddle in Florida during World War II in the British Flying Training School (5BFTS). Living in Lancaster, Penna., he is survived by his wife of 36 years, Judith Rushworth, and three children.

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January 08, 2015

Robin W. Yarber ('04, WW), of Enterprise, Ala., passed away Jan. 8, 2015. She is survived by four siblings.

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January 06, 2015

Alan E. Boissonneault (’87, WW) passed away Jan. 6, 2015 in Oak Harbor, Wash. He retired as a CWO-3, after serving 30 years with the U.S. Navy. Following retirement, he worked for the Kuwait Air Force from 1991-1995, then worked for the U.S. Post Office from 1995 until his retirement in 2005. He is survived by his wife Therese and two sons.

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January 02, 2015

David J. Smith ('45, BFTS, Non-degree), born in Shropshire, England, passed away Jan. 2, 2015 in Litchfield, Conn. He trained at Riddle Field in Clewiston, Fla. He enlisted in the Royal Air Force in 1943, completed his pilot's training  in the United States and  served until the end of World War II. After the war, Mr. Smith pursued a career in horticulture and came to the United States in 1954. He is survived by three sons and was predeceased by his wife, Diana, to whom he had been married for 55 years. Click here to link to his obituary.

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January 02, 2015

Charlene N. Sellers (‘69, DB) passed away Jan. 2, 2015 in Coffeyville, Kan. She lived in Fort Myers, Fla. for many years owning a pet store there before moving to Oklahoma where she raised cattle on a ranch with her father. She later settled in Kansas and is survived by a niece and nephew.

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December 21, 2014

Adedoyin E. B. Adewumi ('10, '14, DB) passed away Dec. 21, 2014. Originally from Nigeria, he earned his bachelor's degree from Embry-Riddle in 2010 and his master's degree in 2014. He married Dahdrian Adewumi on May 3, 2014, in Tampa, Fla.

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December 19, 2014

Marty W. Ogburn (‘96, WW) passed away Dec. 19, 2014. He served in the U.S. Army for 29 years and retired in 2005 with the rank of Chief Warrant Officer 4.  He was employed with the U.S. Army Combat Readiness Center at Fort Rucker, Ala. as the Aviation Safety Training Division Chief. Survivors include his wife, Terri, and two daughters.

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December 10, 2014

Clarence P. Williams, Jr. ('86, '87, WW) passed away Dec 10, 2014.

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November 25, 2014

Katherine “Kate” C. (Schwikert) Waidmann (‘02, DB), former women’s soccer scholar-athlete of Delray Beach, Fla., didn’t give up without a fight. For two and a half years she valiantly fought invasive cancer that originated in her appendix and then spread to other organs. She passed away Nov. 25, 2014.

“She was an inspiring model of a loyal, positive, and determined person

 facing her challenges. Kate was the ultimate fighter,” says Embry-Riddle’s Head Women's Soccer Coach Samantha Bohon.

Waidmann played for the Eagles and Head Coach Dan Blank in 1999 and 2000. A fixture in the Eagles’ starting lineup for two seasons, she earned first team All-Conference honors in 2000 and graduated from Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus with a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science.

Originally from Troy, Mich., Waidmann was diagnosed with cancer in September of 2012. Despite aggressive surgery and treatment, the cancer returned. She died at the age of 35.

Even in the throes of the disease, Waidmann’s positive outlook never wavered and she continued to fight. Her initial diagnosis led the Embry-Riddle Athletic Administration, in conjunction with Phi Gamma Delta International Fraternity, to sponsor a fundraising run in January 2013, with the proceeds helping to offset Waidmann’s medical expenses. The “We Are 1 Run” raised $4,500 for Waidmann and reunited the former Daytona Beach student-athlete with her alma mater and the women’s soccer team.

In April 2014, Waidmann was in Daytona Beach to take part in another fundraiser – the “Color Me Kate 5K.” Bohon recalls: She was the starter for the race, ran through one of the color stations and addressed all the participants at the end, all the while displaying no signs of someone battling for her life, but instead exuding the radiant personality and positive energy for which she will forever be remembered. “We are heartbroken with Kate’s passing, but I'm confident her legacy with ERAU women’s soccer will live on.”


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November 04, 2014

Carl T. Pflanzer ('56, MC, Non-degree) passed away Nov. 4, 2014, in Chesapeake, Va., after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease. He served with the U.S. Air Force and was a Korean War Veteran. After the Air Force, he took a job on the Great Lakes as a ship oil tender. He graduated on Nov. 8, 1956, from Embry-Riddle and he received a CAA Rating for Commercial Pilot. He became an air traffic controller and flight instructor. His airline career started with Mohawk Airlines in 1959; and he retired in 1992 from US Air. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Patricia, four sons, two daughters and two foster sons.

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October 03, 2014

Donald J. Zarda (’14, WW)

Donald J. Zarda (’14, WW) passed away Oct. 3, 2014 in Switzerland. A skilled electrician and information technology professional, he was also an experienced skydiver, serving as a licensed tandem master and skydive instructor. An airplane pilot, he also was a wingsuit athlete involved in BASE jumping.

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September 10, 2014

Robert W. Anderson (‘51, MC) passed away Sept. 10, 2014. A resident of Wilton Manors, Fla., Anderson was a veteran of the U.S. Navy and a past board member of Tradewinds & Atlantic Railroad. He is survived by his wife Luann and four children.

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August 29, 2014

Craig L. Bunton (’14, WW) passed away Aug. 29, 2014.

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August 03, 2014

James A. Baerwolf ('73, DB), 74, passed away Aug. 3, 2014. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1962, serving in the 35th Artillery in Germany until 1964. Upon returning home, he studied aeronautics at Embry-Riddle, where he made the Dean's list and was president of Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity. He worked for the airline industries as a domestic and international flight engineer, retiring in 2010 from Arrow Airways. He is survived by two sons.

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July 06, 2014

Richard J. Curadi (’14, WW)

Richard J. Curadi (’14, WW) passed away July 6, 2014. He served in the military for 32 years, in both the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Army. He served in Operation Desert Storm as an AH-64 Apache pilot, surviving a helicopter crash in 1991. Curadi served three additional tours of duty during the war against terror as a CH -47 Chinook pilot. He was currently serving as a maintenance test pilot in the Connecticut National Guard. Curadi is survived by his wife Denise and one son. Memorial donations in Curadi’s name may be made to Defending the Blue Line.

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June 03, 2014

Gerald M. Fleming ('03, WW), 49, passed away unexpectedly on June 3, 2014, in Albuquerque. N.M. He received a bachelor's degree in professional aeronautics from Embry Riddle in 2003. He began working for Delta Airlines in 1987 and took an early retirement from Delta in July 2008. Survivors  include his wife, Mashell. Click here to link to his obituary.

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April 30, 2014

Dr. Gilbert S. Guinn ('41, BFTS, Non-degree), 85, passed away April 30, 2014, in Greenwood, S.C.  He was a U.S. Air Force veteran and received his Ph.D. in history in 1973 from the University of South Carolina, Columbia. He served as resident director and dean of the University of South Carolina at Union. Later, he was the vice president of academic affairs and dean of Lander College and served as professor of history there until 1991. After his retirement, Gilbert wrote a book entitled, The Arnold Scheme: The training of British Pilots and Navigators in the Southeastern United States, 1941-1943, and collaborated on a second book, England: British Naval Aviation in World War II: The U.S. Navy and Anglo-American Relations. He is survived by his wife, Susan, and three daughters.

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April 14, 2014

Louis F. Boynton (‘59, MC) passed away April 14, 2014 in Atlanta, Ga. after a year of declining health.Boynton is survived by his wife of 58 years, Frances Taraila Boynto, and  four children. He was stationed at Dover Air Force Base from 1953 to 1957and was a longtime airplane technical manager for Pan American Airways, Butler Aviation, and later retired with Northwest Airlines. He was the station manager in Tehran during the fall of the Shah and managed the transition of his team out of the country.

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March 15, 2014

Robert “Bob” Whitney loved aviation since reading Charles Lindbergh’s book, We. “The kid next door to me, his folks got him the book and used to read him a chapter a night before he went to bed. I’d go over and listen to it because I didn’t have the book,” Whitney said in a 2003 interview with Embry-Riddle’s Heritage Project.

When the United States joined the allied forces in World War II, Whitney was eager to be a pilot. He went to Embry-Riddle’s training facility at Carlstrom Field in Arcadia, Fla., and learned to fly a PT-17 Stearman there. “The instrument panel on that PT-17, almost half of the gauges were blacked out so you couldn’t read them. You had to go by your own senses,” he said in 2003.

His second wife, Mary Whitney, says he made a mistake during flight training and was eliminated from the piloting program. Instead of flying, Whitney served in the Air Force as an aircraft armorer and with a B-29 mobile training unit during the war.

Whitney retired after 31 years of service in the Air Force and held fast to his love of aviation and Embry-Riddle. At 98 years old at his passing, Bob is believed to have been Embry-Riddle’s oldest living alumnus. He returned to campus for homecoming as often as possible, reconnecting with friends like Harold Kosola (’63, MC), a longtime supporter of Embry-Riddle and pioneer of the Alumni Association. “We saw Harold at the reunions, and he would sometimes visit us at home. He was not an airman, but he was an engineer. He was a good friend of ours and a good alumnus, too,” Mrs. Whitney says.

The couple still enjoyed aviation even when their health prevented traveling to Embry-Riddle reunions. From their home in Indian Harbour Beach, Fla., they would listen for incoming Boeing 747 Shuttle Carrier jets. “When the [shuttles] would come over piggyback from Arizona, we could see them going back to Cape Canaveral. They would go by over the ocean right near us,” Mrs. Whitney recalls.

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March 14, 2014

Ernest A. Sinnes (‘43, MC)
Mar. 14, 2014

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February 25, 2014

James L. Kington (‘58, MC) passed away Feb. 25, 2014. Residing in Smyrna, Ga., Kington was a U.S. Air Force Veteran and retired from Lockheed Martin Aeronautical after 42 years of service. A native of Dillon, Mont., he is survived by his wife Fran and three children.

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February 23, 2014

A former member of Embry-Riddle’s Board of Visitors at the Daytona Beach Campus and Legacy Society donor, Constance D. Hunter was a dedicated supporter of Embry-Riddle and its mission. She passed away Feb. 23, 2014.

“She believed in Embry-Riddle very strongly,” says Bob Rockett, dean emeritus, who retired in 2010 after more than 35 years at the university and personally knew Constance. “She loved what Embry-Riddle stood for.”

Serving on the Board of Visitors from 2002-2011, Constance was fond of Embry-Riddle’s traditional and conservative values, its strong emphasis on education and the fact that the university valued women students, says Rockett. A young woman in England during WWII, she also appreciated that the university trained many British pilots for the war effort.

Constance established a scholarship for women in her name and another scholarship that honors the memory of her husband, Paul B. Hunter, who passed away in 1980.The Constance D. Hunter Scholarship for Women, established in 2006, benefits Daytona Beach Campus female students with financial need; while the Paul Benwood Hunter Memorial Scholarship, created in 1987, is awarded to engineering students, regardless of gender.

“Mr. Hunter was an intellectual property attorney and he very much believed in technology and moving the world forward, and Mrs. Hunter was a very independent, strong-willed woman who emphatically believed in education for women,” says Pam Clifton, one of the directors of the Hunter Foundation, whose office is in Ormond Beach, Fla.

Born in 1923 in Denzes, England, Constance told stories about volunteering in the bomb shelters in London during WWII, Rockett recalls. “She said the daily bombings were just terrible.”

Educated at Austin’s Business College in Bath, England, Constance was a secretary when she met Paul. They married and she returned with him to the United States. Paul was a founding member of Varian Associates, one of the first Silicon Valley technology companies, whose board included David Packard of Hewlett Packard. The Hunters retired in the 1970s to Ponce Inlet, Fla., where Constance was “very community-oriented,” supporting the local garden club, town and lighthouse, Rockett says.

Upon her death, Constance bequeathed an additional $1 million gift to the two endowed scholarships at Embry-Riddle. “The scholarships are a wonderful testament to her life,” says Chris Lambert, Embry-Riddle’s senior executive director of development. “Generations of students will be touched by her generosity and her strong belief in the value of education.”

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December 30, 2013

Alfred “Al” Skeaney (Staff, T. Higbee Embry Society donor), a former state trooper in New York’s motorcycle unit, retired from the force in the early 1980s and relocated to Daytona Beach to be near his beloved race track. He picked up work as a security guard at Embry-Riddle. His long-time friend and lawyer, Phil Elliott (HonDoc, ’04), Embry-Riddle Trustee Emeritus, describes him as “a little, short guy, and to some extent he had the short guy attitude. He was feisty as hell and quite independent.”

He had also worked part-time for a struggling cable company in New York, receiving company stock as payment, Elliott says. In 1982, Elliott represented Skeaney when Newhouse Cable negotiated to buy the company. Skeaney’s stock was essential to the deal, and was worth a substantial sum. After the sale closed, Skeaney quietly donated $116,000 in a series of gifts to Embry-Riddle. Skeaney kept these gifts secret even from Elliott, an enthusiastic supporter of the university.

The former trooper was still a millionaire when he passed away at age 87 in December 2013, but he was never flamboyant about his wealth—a vestige of his spare upbringing in Brooklyn, Elliott says.

Skeaney had no immediate family. “He married once. He said he tried it, but he didn’t like it,” says his cousin, Miriam Berger. His legacy is in his contributions to organizations like Embry-Riddle.

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October 08, 2013

Lt. Col. Richard William Arnold, Sr. (‘86,WW), of Bryan, Texas, passed away Oct. 8, 2013. He had a 26-year career with the U.S Air Force as a pilot, flight instructor, and educator. After retiring from the Air Force, Dick served as the associate director of Aviation for Easterwood Airport and later as an instructor at Blinn College. He received many Air Force awards during his career. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Mary, and two children.

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July 08, 2013

Charles D. Tackett (’91, WW) passed away July 8, 2013.

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July 08, 2013

Charles D. Tackett (’91, WW) passed away July 8, 2013.

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June 18, 2013

Patrick W. Stringfellow (’08, ’13, WW) passed away June 18, 2013 in Ramstein, Germany. He served 22 years in the U.S. Air Force, retiring in 2008. He was employed with Battlespace Flight Services in 2008, then went to work for GE Aviation in 2011, where he was currently employed. He is survived by his wife Teresa and three children.

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May 12, 2013

Michael E. Tomai (’05, PC) passed away May 12, 2013. He was 30 years old and was buried at Quantico National Cemetery. 

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April 03, 2013

Capt. James Michael Steel ('12, WW) died April 3, 2015 when his F-16 crashed near Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.

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December 26, 2012

Herbert “Roscoe” Brinton, Jr. (’42, MC, Non-degree) passed away Dec. 26, 2012 in Blairsville, Ga. He was a retired airline captain with Eastern Airlines. He is preceded in death by his wife Virginia and one son. He is survived by five children.      

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December 09, 2012

Bryan R. Monroe (’10, ’12, WW) passed away Dec 9, 2012. He is survived by his wife, Nicole.

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December 05, 2012

Lt. Col. James H. Stephenson, Jr. (’00, WW) passed away Dec. 5, 2012 in Madison County, Ala., at age 90. During WWII, Stephenson enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps, eventually flying 30 combat missions over Europe as a B-24 co-pilot. After the war, he worked briefly for Southern Railways. When the Korean War began in 1950, Stephenson volunteered for recall in the Air Force and completed helicopter pilot training. He flew rescue helicopters in Newfoundland, Canada, and was a helicopter instructor pilot in San Marcos, Texas. After earning a degree in aeronautical engineering, he worked on several helicopter development projects, including the CH-47 Chinook. He earned a master's degree in systems reliability engineering and worked for the Aeronautical Systems Division at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Retiring from the military in 1968, he began an 18-year Civil Service career with the US Army Missile Command, then worked another seven years with defense contractor CAS, Inc. He retired permanently in 1993. Stephenson is survived by his five children.

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November 27, 2012

Helen Webster Hassey (‘42, MC, Non-degree) passed away Nov. 27, 2012. She wanted to become a pilot as a child and began taking flying lessons when she was 16. By the time she was 18, she had earned her private pilot's license, commercial license, instrument instructor's license, and flight instructor's license.

She was hired as a flight instructor at the Embry Riddle School of Aviation in Florida. In 1942, there were only 22 female flight instructors in the whole country and at 18 years old, Helen was the youngest. After the program ended with the military, she remained at the base as a seaplane instructor.

She wanted to become a jet pilot, but women weren't permitted to do that at that time. She returned home to Massachusetts, but never gave up her passion for flying.

She purchased her own airplane (22 Tango) and joined the N.E. Chapter of the 99's. She also earned a master’s degree in English. She is survived by her husband of 57 years, Ernest Hassey, and two sons.

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November 26, 2012

Craig M. Fowler (’12, WW) passed away Nov. 26, 2012. He was laid to rest in the Maryland Veterans Cemetery in Cheltenham, Md.

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August 15, 2012

Melvin L. Borne (’48, MC, Non-degree) passed away Aug. 15, 2012.

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May 31, 2012

Patrick F. Moxham ('89, DB) passed away May 31, 2012 from cancer. He was a pilot at US Airways and survived by his wife Shannon.

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January 25, 2011

With the death of Brigadier Gen. William “Bill” Spruance on Saturday, Jan. 15, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has lost an irreplaceable friend and supporter. 

For decades, Gen. Spruance served as a trusted adviser and guiding hand in the university’s development. He was chairman of the board of trustees from 1972 until 1987, when he was named chairman emeritus. He also served on the advisory committee of Embry-Riddle’s Center for Aerospace Education.

“General Bill Spruance was a true friend of our university,” said John P. Johnson, president of Embry-Riddle. “His influence on the development of Embry-Riddle was substantial. As a long-term member and chairman of our board of trustees, he touched the lives of our faculty, staff, and students in ways that strengthened us. His strong advocacy and support for our Air Force ROTC program certainly contributed to its rise as one of the best in the nation. Bill was one of the most patriotic individuals I have ever known. He will always have a special place as a member of the Embry-Riddle family. We will miss him.”

After graduating from Princeton University in 1939, Spruance was commissioned in the Army Air Corps where he worked for Gen. George Patton. During World War II, he flew 362 missions while flying the “Hump” in the China-Burma-India Theater. In 1946, he became a founding member of the Delaware Air National Guard.

After surviving a near-fatal jet airplane crash in 1961, Gen. Spruance committed himself to educating others about surviving serious crashes, delivering more than 3,000 speeches about flight safety and crash survival worldwide to military pilots.

He served on the governing board of the Air Force Association for 30 years and for more than 50 years as a member of the National Guard Association, including a position on the board of directors, National Guard Trust Insurance, and the National Educational Foundation. He was a lifetime member of several pilot organizations including the Daedalians, Quiet Birdmen, Red River Valley Fighter Pilots, and Hump Association.

Gen. Spruance is survived by two sons, William (Embry-Riddle, 1969) and Thomas, and four grandchildren, Elizabeth, Nicole, Chelsea, and Preston. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to the Air Force Association, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and the National Guard Educational Foundation. At Gen. Spruance’s request, no formal services will be held.

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October 02, 2010

James L. Parker, III (’09, WW)

James L. Parker, III (’09, WW) passed away Oct. 2, 2010, as the result of a motorcycle accident. A veteran of the U.S Air Force, he worked at British Aerosystems as an avionics engineer.

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August 04, 2010

Richard P. Bishop (’70, DB) passed away Aug 14, 2010 in Spring Hill, Fla. He is survived by his wife of 30 years, Mildred Ann, and one daughter.

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December 31, 2009

Senior Master Sgt. David T. Sampson (’09, WW) passed away Dec 31, 2009. He served 28 years in the U.S. Air Force and held numerous medals and awards. He is survived by his wife, Theresa, and two stepdaughters. Donations can be made in his name to the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.

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June 13, 2009

Chris S. Park (’09, WW) passed away June 13, 2009. 

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May 14, 2009

Dr. Norval Pohl Prescott, Ariz., May 13, 2009 -- Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is sad to announce the passing of Dr. Norval Pohl, age 65, after a courageous battle with cancer. Dr. Pohl passed away in his sleep surrounded by his family at his home in Fountain Hills, Ariz.

“He fought his illness with great valor and showed a love of life in all he did. We all admired Norval’s attempt to return to his profession and the University that he was so committed to during his illness. He was our friend – and we will miss him dearly. His values and commitment to Embry-Riddle will not be forgotten. His effect on and love of his family is immeasurable,” stated Dr. John P. Johnson, Embry-Riddle President.

Dr. Pohl joined Embry-Riddle in July 2007, serving as Chancellor during his first year and then as Chief Academic Officer. Previously at the University of North Texas he was President for six years and Provost for two years.

“Dr. Pohl brought a tremendous energy and excitement concerning student success and was a great asset for the campus,” said Dan Carrell, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President for the Prescott Campus. “His love of Prescott and the Southwest goes back to his teaching days at Yavapai Community College. Norval was highly respected, everyone on campus enjoyed working with him, and he is a loss to our students, faculty, staff, and community.”

During his prestigious career in higher education he was also Dean of the Colleges of Business at Northern Arizona University and the University of Nevada at Las Vegas (UNLV), and Vice President of Administrative and Financial Affairs at UNLV.

As a complement to his academic career, Dr. Pohl served on the Board of Directors of many businesses and nonprofits, including his most cherished position with American Pacific Corp., a public company listed on the NASDAQ exchange, with whom he served for some 23 years.

Dr. Pohl is survived by his wife, best friend, and partner of 38 years, Dr. Barbikay Bissell Pohl, a retired professor and current Montessori teacher; son Prescott, an attorney; son Chandler, a filmmaker and professor; grandson Tennessee Norval; older brother and childhood hero Martin, founder and former president of a nut-processing facility; half-brother Loren, a retired accountant; and two beloved German shepherds.

A memorial service will be held at the Haas Interfaith Memorial Chapel on the Prescott Campus later. In lieu of flowers or cards, the family is requesting donations to help establish a memorial scholarship fund at Embry-Riddle. Contributions for the Dr. Norval Pohl Memorial Scholarship may be mailed to the Office of Development, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, 3700 Willow Creek Road, Prescott, AZ 86301. Checks should be made out to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and please note “Pohl Memorial Scholarship” on the memo line. For additional information, contact Steve Bobinsky, Director of Development, at (928) 777-4210.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the world’s largest, fully accredited university specializing in aviation and aerospace, offers more than 30 degree programs in its colleges of Arts and Sciences, Aviation, Business, and Engineering, educating more than 34,000 students annually in undergraduate and graduate programs. Doctoral programs in aviation and in engineering physics are pending approval by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) for the University to offer programs at the doctoral level. Embry-Riddle educates students at residential campuses in Prescott, Ariz., and Daytona Beach, Fla., through the Worldwide Campus at more than 130 campus centers in the United States, Europe, Canada, and the Middle East, and through online learning. For more information, visit

More information can be found at the Embry-Riddle website and the University of North Texas website.

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February 17, 2009

News Release
Colgan Air, Inc. Releases Additional Information Regarding Flight 3407
AMHERST, NY, Feb 13, 2009 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX) -- Colgan Air, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary ofPinnacle Airlines Corp. (NASDAQ: PNCL), has released additional information about Continental Connection flight 3407.

The flight was operating from Newark Liberty International Airport to Buffalo Niagara International Airport when it was involved in an accident outside Buffalo Niagara Airport at about 10:20 PM EST Thursday (Feb.12). This flight was operated by Colgan Air.

Preliminary information indicates that the flight carried 44 passengers and a crew of four. There was also an off-duty Colgan Air crewmember aboard, bringing the number of individuals to 49.

"We are greatly saddened by this accident," said Philip H. Trenary, President & CEO of Pinnacle Airlines Corp., parent company of Colgan Air. "Our prayers are extended to the family and loved ones of those aboard flight 3407 and those affected on the ground. Please know that we will commit all needed resources to assist the NTSB's investigation of this accident and work to ensure that a tragedy such as this does not occur again."

Following are the names of crewmembers on flight 3407:

  • Captain Marvin Renslow joined Colgan on September 9, 2005.
  • First Officer Rebecca Shaw joined Colgan on January 16, 2008.
  • Flight Attendant Matilda Quintero joined Colgan on May 28, 2008.
  • Flight Attendant Donna Prisco joined Colgan on May 28, 2008.
  • Captain Joseph Zuffoletto ('03, PC), an off-duty crewmember aboard flight 3407, joined Colgan on September 19, 2005.

Flight 3407 was operated using a Dash 8 Q400 aircraft. This aircraft was manufactured on April 12, 2008 and was placed into service by Colgan that month.

A toll-free number has been established for families and friends of those on flight 3407. That number is 800-621-3263. Only family members and friends should call this number.

The latest updates will be posted on and may be viewed by clicking the link on the home page.

About Pinnacle Airlines Corp.

Pinnacle Airlines Corp. (NASDAQ: PNCL), an airline holding company, is the parent company of Pinnacle Airlines, Inc. and Colgan Air, Inc. Pinnacle Airlines, Inc. operates a fleet of 142 regional jets in the United States, Canada, the Bahamas, Mexico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Turks and Caicos Islands as Northwest Airlink and Delta Connection. Colgan Air, Inc. operates a fleet of 51 regional turboprops as Continental Connection, United Express and US Airways Express. Pinnacle Airlines Corp. operating units fly over 1,000 daily flights and transport 13 million passengers a year to 144 cities and towns in North America. The corporate headquarters is located in Memphis, Tennessee. Airport hub operations are located in Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Newark, Washington Dulles, Houston, LaGuardia, Memphis and Minneapolis. Visit for more information.

Colgan Air, Inc.
SOURCE: Pinnacle Airlines

Parents to Visit Crash Site

By Tony Shin

updated 10:24 a.m. PT, Mon., Feb. 16, 2009

Captain Joseph Zuffoletto ('03, PC) was 27-years-old. He grew up in the South Bay in his parent's Bonita home.

Jim and Roselle Zuffoletto talked about their son and his love for flying at an early age. At 16-years-old, Joseph began taking flying lessons at Montgomery Field.

"By the time he was 17, he had his pilot's license, he wanted to fly and that's all he wanted to do," Roselle said.

When the couple found out their son had been killed in the plane crash outside Buffalo, New York , they were in disbelief.

"We just sobbed, we couldn't believe it, we thought there had to be some big mistake," Roselle said. The plane had crashed outside in a small community called Clarence Center. It is also the same community where Joseph has family members.

"So, we were doubly concerned because we didn't know how close the plane crash was to our family's home," Roselle said. Thankfully, it wasn't their home.

Jim and Roselle are flying to New York on Saturday to visit the crash site.

"He knew the risks of flying and he knew what he was getting into," Jim said. "He was living his dream."


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January 20, 2009

The National Business Aviation Association is deeply saddened by the passing of John H. Winant, former president of the Association and a critical player in the evolution of business aviation. Winant died of natural causes Tuesday at his home in Williamstown, MA. He was 85 years-old.

"It would be difficult to overstate the importance of John Winant in the development of business aviation in the United States and around the world," said NBAA President Ed Bolen. "John was respected and trusted by aviation professionals, company executives, cabinet secretaries and elected officials. His integrity, knowledge, dedication and gentle nature made him an extraordinarily effective advocate for our community."

Winant was first elected to NBAA's Board of Directors in 1957 when he was vice president of the Sprague Electric Company. While still a director, he was appointed as NBAA's first full-time staff president in 1971, and he served in that capacity through his retirement in 1986 when the NBAA Board bestowed on him the title of President Emeritus.

Under Winant's direction, NBAA grew from 824 Member Companies to almost 3,000 and the Association's Annual Meeting & Convention became one of aviation's premier events in the world. In 1981 he was instrumental in bringing together other business aviation associations from around the world to form the International Business Aviation Council.

Winant authored two books on business aviation. Keep Business Flying, a history of NBAA and the industry, was published in 1989 and NBAA Works was published in 2002.

During his career, Winant received many of aviation's highest awards, including the Federal Aviation Administration's "Distinguished Service Award;" PATCO's "President's Award;" Flight Safety Foundation's "Meritorious Service Award;" and National Aeronautical Association's "Elder Statesman Award." In 1977, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University awarded Winant the Gill Robb Wilson Award and later conferred on him the honorary degree of Doctor of Aviation Management. The Board Room at NBAA Headquarters in Washington, DC is named for Winant.

Born in Brooklyn, NY in 1923, Winant graduated from the Peddie School in Hightstown, NJ and received his bachelor's degree from Williams College.

During World War II, Winant served with the US Marine Corps as an infantry platoon leader, earning the Bronze Star medal with combat "V" for hero service. During the Korean War, he served as captain in charge of the Marine Guard force at Indian Island near Hadlock, WA.

Long active in the Protestant Episcopal Church, Winant served for four years as the senior warden of St. John's Church in Washington, DC, the historic parish known as "the Church of Presidents."

Winant is survived by his wife, Kathryn, their two children, Peter Winant and Claudia Elliot, and their families, including five grandchildren. The funeral will be held at 11:00 am on Saturday, January 17 in Williamstown.

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January 09, 2009

James "Jim" Ralph Knapp ('91, PC) was an exceptional man whose life has touched many in the Embry-Riddle and the Prescott community.

Jim is survived by his brother Bobby, ex-wife Ann, and his teenage sons: Jay age 13, and Alex age 11.

Jim had a colorful and extensive history with Embry-Riddle after he graduated with a Associates degree in Aeronautical Science in 1991.

During his tenure at Embry-Riddle, Jim worked for the College of Aviation, Flight, University Development Office, Summer programs, and Admissions. He was instrumental in many of the events, activities, and new buildings on campus.

Jim will always be remembered as a deep emotional person with a tireless entrepreneurial spirit and endless enthusiasm for fresh new ideas. He was a deal maker, an open thinker, and a person who could share incredible deep philosophical perspectives and then immediately break into a triad of humorous actions and jokes. His ability to make fun of any situation and make you smile will be missed.

Jim’s greatest loves were his two sons, his family, friends, and the desire to catch and ride the biggest wave.

I am sure Jim’s final words would include the phrase “Stay Stoked,” a phrase represents Jim’s surfer spirit and his constant quest for knowledge, friends, and fun. 

Arrangements for services have not been finalized. Individuals wanting additional details or who wish to drop off or sign cards for the family should stop in at the Human Resources Office - Prescott Campus.

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December 03, 2008

We are saddened to inform the Embry-Riddle community that Howard Muffler ('87, DB; '92, DB), an Information Security Analyst in the University’s Information Technology Department, died suddenly at home Monday, December 1, 2008.

Howard joined Embry-Riddle in 1984 and his responsibilities over the years ranged from systems analysis to network management and special projects. An Embry-Riddle alumnus, he held degrees in Aeronautical Engineering and Aviation Business Administration. Howard’s dedication and sense of humor made him a joy to work with. The Embry-Riddle community will miss him greatly.

A memorial service for Howard Muffler was held at the Embry-Riddle Chapel on Saturday, Dec. 6, at 11 a.m.

Condolence cards may be sent to Howard’s wife at the following address:

Alejandra Muffler
732 Prospect Point Drive
Port Orange, FL  32127

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation at or the Michael J. Fox Foundation at

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October 14, 2008

The President’s Office is saddened to announce the death of Capt. John Anthony “Jack” Fidel, a former Embry-Riddle Provost and Executive Vice President. The official obituary follows below and includes information on how to donate to the John A. Fidel Aviation Scholarship Endowment at Embry-Riddle.

Capt. John Anthony Fidel, USN (Ret.) passed away Sept. 26, 2008, in Concord, North Carolina. A Memorial Service will be held at All Saints Episcopal Church on Saturday, Oct. 18, at 11 a.m. Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery. 

Mr. Fidel was born Dec. 5, 1916, in Telluride, Colorado, to Anne Bagley Allen Fidel, formerly of Petersburg, Virginia, and Anthony George Fidel of Boulder, Colorado. The family moved to Casper, Wyoming, where he spent his formative years and where he and his brother, Allen, were the Junior and Senior State tennis champions, respectively. He was appointed to the Naval Academy in 1935, where he graduated with the Class of 1939. Upon graduation, he was assigned to the battleship USS Oklahoma based in Hawaii. He was detached from the Oklahoma in May 1940, and reported to the destroyer USS Somers as Gunnery Officer. In 1942, he received orders for flight training, which he completed in Pensacola, and was designated a Naval Aviator. During WWII he served as Executive Officer of Torpedo Squadron 80 on the aircraft carrier USS Ticonderoga, and as Commanding Officer of VT-11 on the carrier USS Hornet. Following WWII, he served as Executive Officer of the carrier USS Randolph, and Commanding Officer of the USS Cimarron, as well as Commanding Officer of the carrier USS Valley Forge.

Shore duty assignments included Operations Officer of the Naval Air Station, Jacksonville, Florida, and duty in Washington, D.C., with the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Air), the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Executive Office of the Secretary of the Navy. He also attended the Naval War College (Advanced Course); U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College (Senior Course); and the Institute of Languages (Italian).  His last duty prior to retirement was as the Commanding Officer, Naval Support Activity, Naples, Italy, where he received the Ambassador’s Award from the U.S. Ambassador for directing the most outstanding Italian-American community relations program of any U.S. activity in Italy, as well as the Navy Legion of Merit for maintaining an exceptional degree of understanding and cooperation between Italian officials and the American community. Other decorations and medals awarded during his Navy career included two Distinguished Flying Crosses, Air Medal, Presidential Unit Citation with Gold Star, American Defense Service Medal with Star, Atlantic and Pacific Theater with Four Stars, European-African Middle Eastern Theater, American Theater Ribbon, WWII Victory Medal, National Defense Service Medal, United Nations Service Medal, Philippine Liberation Ribbon with Two Stars, and Philippine Legion of Merit.

On retirement from the Navy, he embarked on his second career at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida, where he initially served as the Dean of the College of Aviation Technology, then as Provost and Executive Vice President. The John A. Fidel Aviation Scholarship Endowment was established in honor of his leadership, friendship, and dedication to higher education in aviation by the Board of Visitors and the many friends of Jack Fidel, including Austin Kiplinger, among the original sponsors. Jack retired for the second time in 1986, although he continued to serve on the University’s Board of Visitors.

He was very active in civic affairs while in Daytona Beach, serving as President of the Daytona Beach Chapter of the Navy League; Board of Directors of the Rotary Club; Board of Directors of the American Red Cross; Board of Directors of the Economic Development Committee; a Director of the Coastal Education Broadcasters Inc.; a member of the Ormond Beach Planning Board; a member of the Volusia County Educational Authority; a member of the Chamber of Commerce Legislative Affairs Committee; and President of the Board of Directors of the Daytona Beach Art League.

He is survived by his loving wife of 66 years, June Rooney Fidel; his daughter, Barbara Fidel Adams, and her husband, Jim Adams; his son, Lawrence Fidel, and his wife, Katie Fidel; two grandsons; three granddaughters; three great-granddaughters; three great grandsons; and his brother, Edward Allen Fidel.

Memorials may be made to the John A. Fidel Aviation Scholarship Endowment, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Office of Development, 600 S. Clyde Morris Boulevard, Daytona Beach, FL 32114-3900; or to the U.S. Naval Academy “Class of 1939 Operating Fund,” c/o Gerrie Farmer, Comptroller, USNA Alumni Association, 247 King George Street, Annapolis, MD 21402-5068.

Wilkinson Funeral Home is handling arrangements for the family and will accept online condolences; go to and then select “Obituaries” in the left menu.

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September 11, 2008

Francis S. McGlade, 78, former director of safety for the U.S. Army who spoke out against the military's failure to take corrective action after accidents, died Aug. 23 at Kindred Hospital in Richmond of complications after heart surgery.

Mr. McGlade had been a top safety official for the Army for 20 years and had previously served in uniform during the Korean War while based at Fort Sill, Okla. Born in Fountain Hill, Pa. he graduated from East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania and was a star on the basketball team.

He later received a master's degree in education from New York University in 1956 and a doctorate in educational psychology and school administration from NYU in 1960.

His career included work  for the National Education Association in Harrisonburg, Va., and Washington until he switched to working at the Pentagon as a civilian . His book, "Adjustive Behavior and Safe Performance," was published in 1970.

After retiring from the Pentagon, Mr. McGlade moved to Flagler Beach, Fla. Three years later, he began teaching at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach. He also worked for consulting firms in Florida until retiring again in 1994.

Mr. McGlade's hobbies included holding one of the largest private collections in the United States, his family said. He visited Ireland four times, owned dozens of dogs throughout his life and enjoyed playing and watching sports as well as discussing politics.

His marriage to Sophia McGlade ended in divorce. His second wife, Christine McGlade, died in 2005.

Survivors include three children from his first marriage, Michele Gendelman of Los Angeles, Matthew McGlade of Falls Church and Marc McGlade of Midlothian, Va.; three stepchildren, James Upton of Arlington County, Steve Upton of Palm Coast and Kim Upton of Holly Hill, Fla.; and nine grandchildren.

By Patricia Sullivan
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, September 11, 2008; B06

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September 10, 2008

For more information about Erica Simpson, visit her website Erica Simpson Aerosports at

Erica Sampson in planeRENO, Nev.
— A pilot was killed in a crash Saturday while tuning up for the annual Reno National Championship Air Races, authorities said.

Formula One racer Erica Simpson ('97, '99, DB), 32, of Phillipsburg, N.J., was preparing for her second year as a competitor in the event when her aircraft crashed at Reno-Stead Airport.

"Erica was a highly skilled pilot and a fierce competitor, but more importantly she was a friend," said Mike Houghton, president of the air races. "This has been a difficult day for all of us—Erica's friends and aviation family—and we will deeply miss her smile and energy."

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said the wings of Simpson's homebuilt, single-engine Cassult IIIM broke off as she was performing a roll.

Organizers were observing her as part of the certification process to allow her to perform in the weeklong event, which begins Monday with qualifying runs, Gregor said.

Simpson, a commercial pilot who was raised in Port Wing, Wis., competed in the biplane class in 2006.

Three pilots were killed in competition during last year's air races. There now have been 19 fatalities in the 45-year history of the event.

The 9 a.m. crash is under investigation by the FAA and National Transportation Safety Board.

Four FAA safety officials were present when the crash occurred, Gregor said.

Racing opens to the public Wednesday through Sunday after completion of qualifying runs.

A tribute to Simpson is planned to take place during the opening ceremonies, organizers said.

By MARTIN GRIFFITH Associated Press Writer
Article Launched: 09/06/2008 11:14:23 AM PDT

A Public Viewing will be held on Saturday, Sept. 13, at 8 a.m., followed by a Funeral Service at 11 a.m. at South Shore District High School:
9135 School Rd.
Port Wing, WI 54865
In lieu of flowers, the family has set up a scholarship fund.
Security State Bank
P.O. Box 27
Port Wing, WI 54865

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July 28, 2008

Cheryl H. Dodson was awakened about 1:30 a.m. Monday by a knock at the front door of her Shreveport home. With her husband deployed to Andersen Air Force Base near Guam, she thought that it was an intruder.

"I was scared," she said.

On her porch were Air Force officials and her friend. Dodson said she knew something bad had happened. She expected the worst.

"When you hear about the military officials coming to your house in the middle of the night, it's bad," she said. "It's usually to tell you your loved one has died, but that's not what they told me."

At the time, Dodson said she was told her husband, Capt. Michael K. Dodson ('99, PC), was in an accident. She and the rest of the world soon learned that Dodson, who was a co-pilot on the B-52 bomber that crashed in the Pacific Ocean, was one of six who died in the accident.

She met Michael Dodson online in 2002. At the beginning of 2003, they met face to face. Cheryl lived in Raleigh, N.C., and Michael was a navigator on C-130s, 64 miles away in Fayetteville. But it wasn't love at first sight, Cheryl said.

"We didn't like each other," she said. "Michael had a way about him that if you got to know him for about a week you'd fall in love with him."

She eventually did. Michael was deployed to Iraq, and Cheryl needed a place to live while attending nursing school. She house-sat for Michael while he was away.

"He ended up coming home early from the war," she said. "We lived together for a year and a half together as just as friends. Before I moved out to go to nursing school, I told him I was in love with him. And he subsequently told me he was in love with me."

For Cheryl, she fell in love with his warmth and character, most especially his selflessness. The couple married Jan. 10, 2005.

"Michael is the most loyal human being I ever met," she said. "He is the most giving human being I ever met. He was my angel. God sent him to me."

Michael, born in November 1976, grew up in San Antonio and wanted to fly planes since he was 12, his father Larry Dodson said.

"He got in the Civil Air Patrol and stuck in there with it," he said. "When he made up his mind, he went ahead and did it."

Michael worked through the summers to put himself through the program. By the time he went to college, he clocked 400 commercial flying hours.

He earned a bachelor of art degree in electrical engineering from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Ariz.

But Michael didn't want to be a navigator forever — he wanted to fly. In 2005, he participated in the Euro-Nato Joint Jet Pilot Training program in Wichita Falls, Texas. He was one of 15 out of a more than 300 applicant pool to undergo the international training.

The program lasts about 55 weeks. Once completed, officers become pilots and receive the silver U.S. Wings. Officers were assigned to several posts after that including Barksdale to fly the B-52. But Michael wanted to fly fighters.

"At first he was disappointed," Larry Dodson said. "But once he got into the groove, he told Cheryl he was happier here than anywhere else."

Early Wednesday morning, after midnight, four fully-uniformed airmen returned to Cheryl's door. One of the officers was a priest, another was a social worker. They kneeled, looked her straight in the eye and told her Michael died.

"But I already knew that. I just knew," she said.Cheryl said she'll return to North Carolina. Although she and Michael loved the area, it just isn't the same without him. Cheryl will attend law school and build the dream house they were planning.

And although she had has made peace with the situation, she can't help but to think about the medallion of St. Christopher she gave her husband. The icon is the patron saint of travelers.

"When he'd fly I'd say, 'I'll see you after you fly' and he'd have to say 'See you after I fly.' That was our affirmation that we'd see each other. On the back I had inscribed, 'I'll see you when you get home.' When I gave it to him I meant I'll see you when you get home back in Shreveport. I guess it meant I'll see you when I get home."

Read the full article at

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June 16, 2008

Kevin G. Gorham (’02, WW)

Kevin G. Gorham (’02, WW) passed away June 16, 2008 in a tragic airplane accident. He served active duty with the U.S. Air Force at Tyndall Air Force Base with the 2nd Fighter Squadron from 1997-2000, receiving numerous awards during his military service. He was a member of the Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association, International Council of Airshows, Experimental Aircraft Association, International Aerobatic Club and National Business Aircraft Association. He also was a partner and manager of operations of Precision AvJet Family of Companies and a proud crewmember of the Red Eagle Airsports Team. Gorham is survived by his wife, Joni and two children.

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August 14, 2007

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jackie L. McFarlane, Jr. (’04, WW)

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jackie L. McFarlane, Jr. (’04, WW) passed away Aug. 14, 2007 in Taqaddum, Iraq, of injuries sustained in a helicopter crash, while he was serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was among five soldiers killed when the group's helicopter crashed during a routine post-maintenance test flight, according to the military. His CH-47 Chinook helicopter crashed near Anbar province. McFarlane, who was from Virginia Beach, Va., was part of the 1st Battalion, 52nd Aviation Regiment, Task Force 49, based in Fort Wainwright, Alaska. He is survived by his wife and two children.

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June 22, 2003

Amanda J Bellido (‘03, WW) passed away June 22, 2003. She attended the Worldwide Campus in Louisville, Ky. and lived in Elizabethtown, Ky. She is survived by her husband Mauricio. 

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September 29, 2002

Brian N. Seidel (’02, DB)

Brian N. Seidel (’02, DB), age 22, died September 29, 2002 in a motorcycle accident.  Susan Seidel said that her son was a senior at Embry Riddle and received his diploma posthumously.

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November 12, 2000

Cherry H. Tillery (’00, WW) passed away Nov. 12, 2000. She is survived by her husband Richard and one son.

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