Lt. Col. Robert William Farland obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Lt. Col. Robert William Farland

March 2, 1933 - March 30, 2015

Obituary


Robert William Farland was called to eternal rest on March 30, 2015.

Bob was born on March 2, 1933 in Ambridge, Pennsylvania, to George and Adeline Farland. He grew up in western Pennsylvania and attended various primary and secondary schools, but felt a call to serve his country, and enlisted in the USAF in 1950 at age 17. After basic training he completed basic electronics and radar training at Keesler AFB, Mississippi, and received his first assignment to Neubiberg AB in Munich, Germany. Like so many American GI's there, he met the love of...

Robert William Farland was called to eternal rest on March 30, 2015.

Bob was born on March 2, 1933 in Ambridge, Pennsylvania, to George and Adeline Farland. He grew up in western Pennsylvania and attended various primary and secondary schools, but felt a call to serve his country, and enlisted in the USAF in 1950 at age 17. After basic training he completed basic electronics and radar training at Keesler AFB, Mississippi, and received his first assignment to Neubiberg AB in Munich, Germany. Like so many American GI's there, he met the love of his life, a young German girl named Brigitte, and they subsequently married on December 11, 1954. A yearning to fly compelled Bob to strive for Officer Candidate training, which he completed as a distinguished graduate in 1959. He received primary and basic pilot training at Moore and Laredo AFBs, Texas, graduating with honors. Distinguishing himself as an exceptional pilot, 'Gom-bey' was selected as an instructor pilot, and trained future pilots in the T-33, T-37, and T-38 aircraft at various bases throughout his early career. Taking a break as an "IP", he served in Vietnam humping cargo and troops in a C-123 Provider out of Danang AB from 1965-66. Future assignments included duty as a Stan-Eval officer, 3630th FTW at Sheppard AFB Texas; assignments at Ramstein AB, Germany as Staff officer in HQ USAFE DCS/Plans; HQ AAFCE; and Commander, 7086th Operations Squadron where he flew the T-39 Saberliner.

His subsequent assignment to Langley as a staff officer in ADTAC proved to be his last, and he retired from the Air Force in February, 1985 after 35 years service. During his career, Bob earned his GED, a Bachelors degree from the University of Oklahoma, and a Masters degree from Ball State University. He earned the distinction of Command pilot status, and his military decorations include the Bronze Star medal; Defense Meritorious medal; Meritorious Service medal; Air Medal with many devices; Air Force Commendation medal; and Vietnam Service medal.

The next 10 years Bob enjoyed a second career in computers, and retired for good to pursue his third love next to his spouse and flying: GOLF! He and Kitty enjoyed traveling the country, playing at a myriad of courses, at King's Mill, and Langley. As he grew older, he was always proud when he'd "shoot his age!" He really enjoyed working around the house and in the yard, fending off the squirrels and deer. We will miss his unending smile, his ever-present sense of humor, and his presence in our lives.

Bob is survived by his wife of 60 years, Brigitte "Kitty"; son Robert J. (Joanne), Hill City, South Dakota; daughter Peggy A. Shields (Robert), Minneapolis, Minnesota; 6 grandchildren: Robert J. (Kim) Farland; Anthony W. (Christine) Farland; Michael S. (Terry) Farland; Sarah B. Puls; Ryan W. Puls; and Stephanie V. Shields; and 8 great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Cal Farley's Boys & Girls Ranch, at www.calfarley.org.

Friends are encouraged to visit www.parklawn-woodfh.com to share memories and words of condolence with the family.

Arrangements are under the care of Parklawn-Wood Funeral Home, 2551 N. Armistead Ave., Hampton, Virginia 23666.