|26 Years of Honoring & Remembering
100th Anniversary of WWI
2014 Honored Guests
(additional Honored Guests will be listed as they are confirmed)
|Lieutenant General Dennis Cavin, US Army (Ret)
Lieutenant General Dennis Cavin, Commanding General USA Accessions Command, Ret. General Cavin retired after completing 34 years of service in the USA, which included Commanding General USA Recruiting Command and directing the USA Advertising and Marketing Program launching the highly successful Army of One Campaign in 2002. He most recently retired again as Vice President, International Air and Missile Defense Strategic Initiatives, Huntsville, Alabama Division of Lockheed Martin Corporation.
Admiral Jody A. Breckenridge, USCG (Ret)
Admiral Breckenridge was Commander Coast Guard Pacific Area and Commander Coast Guard Defense Forces West. The Area of Operations for this command encompassed over 73 million square miles throughout the Pacific Basin to the Far East. Previously she served as the Director, Strategic Transformation Team and served as Assistant Commandant for Human Resources. Her initial flag assignment was as Commander, Maintenance and Logistics Command Pacific with responsibility for all mission support in the Pacific Theater and she served as Commander of the Eleventh Coast Guard District in Alameda, CA.. She received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, earned a Masters Degree in Public Policy from the University of Maryland and a Masters Degree of Science in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. Her personal awards include three Legion of Merits, three Meritorious Service Medals, and four Coast Guard Commendation Medals. VADM Breckenridge will give the speech at the Courthouse Military Ceremony following the Salute to Veterans Parade on Memorial Day.
|Major General Arnold Fields, US Marine Corps (Ret)
Major General Arnold Fields, USMC, Ret., Deputy Commander, USMC Forces, Europe. Major General Fields retired from the United States Marine Corps in 2004 after over 34 years of active military service. At the time of his retirement he was serving as the Deputy Commander of Marine Corps Forces in Europe. During Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm, General Fields commanded the 3rd Infantry Battalion of the 6th Marine Regiment in operations against Iraqi Armed Forces. After retirement, he served as a member of the U.S. Department of Reconstruction and Management Office. He then served as the Deputy Director of the Africa Center for Strategic Studies, Department of Defense. He then served as Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction until 2011. He was recently reappointed by the Secretary of the Navy to a second term on the Board of Visitors, Marine Corps University. He will close the Honored Guests Banquet, as he has for many years, by singing God Bless America.
McGee, US Air Force (Ret)
Colonel McGee, an original Tuskegee Airman, entered Army Air Corps Flight Training in 1942 and received his Silver Wings as a pilot in Class 43-F, Tuskegee Army Air Field. During his 30 years of active duty he flew fighter aircraft combat tours in three major wars: WWII, Korean War and the Vietnam War in P-39's, P-47's, P-51's, F-51's and RF-4C's. When he retired he held the USAF fighter combat record of 409 missions and 1,151 combat hours. He is the former President of the Tuskegee Airmen of America and was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 2007 with his fellow Tuskegee Airmen. He is a graduate of Columbia College (Kansas City Campus).
|Captain Ronald McGee, US Air Force & Air Force Reserve
(son of Colonel Charles McGee)
Captain Ronald McGee served 7 years in the USAF and flew F-4 Phantoms in Viet Nam, at the same time as his father who was serving in his third war. Ronald went to high school in Belton Mo and graduated with a degree in Aerospace Engineering from KU, after which he entered the Air Force to continue the legacy of his father, an original Tuskegee Airman. After his military service Ron joined commercial aviation and flew for Braniff Airlines. Missing military fighter flying he joined the Air Force Reserve where he flew A-10 Thunderbolts at Richards Gebaur AFB, Mo. He continued his civilian career as a Captain for Continental and United Airlines on the B-727, DC-10, B-777 and B-787 Dreamliner and was an instructor and Check Airman on those aircraft for 17 years. Ron retired from United with over 31,000 total flight hours.
|Lt Colonel Steve Schnell, US Air Force Reserve
Lt Col Steve Schnell, USAFR, is presently serving at Wright-Patterson AFB, Dayton, Ohio. He has over 5000 flying hours in the C-141 Starlifter, C-5 Galaxy, and his most current airlifter, the C-17 Globemaster III. He serves full time for the Air Force Reserve as their Chief of Current Operations -orchestrating over 5500 hours of flying annually in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom. He has been involved in nearly every US contingency since 1992. He is most proud of his units (445th Airlift Wing) flying 17000 wounded out of Balad, Iraq, from 2003-2005, without the loss of a single life. Lt Col also has the distinction of being the last C-141 Pilot.
|Lt Colonel Maura George, US Army & US Air Force
Lt Col Maura George is a C-130 pilot and Chief of Wing Operations Plans, 302d Airlift Wing, Peterson AFB, CO. She spent over 7 years serving as a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter pilot in the Army including a combat tour as a MEDEVAC pilot in Iraq flying wounded off the battlefield. In 2004, Lt Col George left the Army to fly C-130s in the Air Force Reserve flying around the world in support of Operations IRAQI and ENDURING FREEDOM as well as stateside MEDEVAC missions, the Armys Basic Airborne Course and numerous joint-forces airdrop training missions. Maura is a 1992 graduate of Park Hill High School in Kansas City and a former eighth-grade math student of one of the members of our Kansas City Dawn Patrol.
|Captain William Bond, US Navy (Ret)
Captain Bond retired as the Commander, Fighter Wing, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, F-14 Tomcats. He is a graduate of Hickman High School, the University of Missouri and has a Master's Degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College in Newport, RI. He received his Navy Wings of Gold in June, 1980. He was the Squadron Operations Officer for Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM. As Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations he deployed aboard the USS John F. Kennedy in support of Operations NOBLE EAGLE and ENDURING FREEDOM. He is currently the President and Owner of RenCon Industries, LLC.
|Colonel Charles DeBellevue, US Air Force (Ret)
Colonel DeBellevue is our Ace of Aces from the Vietnam War. As a member of the famed "Triple Nickel," the 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron, he is credited with downing six North Vietnamese MiGs. Altogether he logged 550 combat hours while flying 220 combat missions, 96 over North Vietnam. After 30 years of distinguished service he retired from the Air Force in 1998 as the last American Ace on active duty. His final assignment was as Commander of the AFROTC Detachment 440 at the University of Missouri - Columbia. His decorations include the Air Force Cross, three Silver Stars, three Legions of Merit, and six Distinguished Flying Crosses.
|Rear Admiral John J. Mumaw, US Navy (Ret)
Rear Admiral Mumaw retired from the Navy on October 1, 1998 after 34 years of Naval Service. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1964 and was designated a naval aviator in 1965. He was selected to Rear Admiral in 1989 and in October of 1994 earned his second star. His past flag assignments have been as Commander, U.S. Maritime Defense Zone Pacific, Sector Alaska (1990-1992); Deputy Commander, Maritime Surveillance and Reconnaissance Forces, U.S. Sixth Fleet (1992-1994); Director of the Naval Reserve Aviation Staff at the Pentagon (1994-1996); and Commander, Naval Reserve Readiness Command Midwest (1994-1997). Among his awards are the Legion of Merit (five awards), Meritorious Service Medal, and the Navy Commendation Medal.
|Captain Ron Sharek, US Air Force
Captain Sharek served for 8 years in the USAF and flew 233 missions in Vietnam. After growing up in Kansas City Ks, Ron Sharek attended Parks College of St Louis University. There he received his degree in Aeronautical Engineering and his commission through the Air Force ROTC program. He received his pilot training at Sheppard AFB in Wichita Falls TX and upon flight school graduation, he went to transition training in the F-100 at Luke, AFB outside Phoenix AZ. After training in the F-100, he was assigned to the 612th Tactical Fighter Squadron of the 35th Tactical Fighter Wing at Phan Rang Air Base in the Republic of South Vietnam. While at Phan Rang, he flew 233 combat missions in the F-100 and during his year tour he was awarded the Air Medal with 13 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Distinguished Flying Cross with one Oak Leaf Cluster and the Silver Star. After Vietnam, he served as an instructor pilot, flight commander and flight examiner back at Sheppard AFB. His final assignment was with Headquarters Air Training Command Standardization and Evaluation team where he was awarded the Commendation Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal. Ron now resides in St Louis Mo.
|Mrs. Patricia Young, WWII Women Airforce Service Pilots
Mrs. Young was in WASP class 44-W-1. In high school she had to write a letter about a vocational interest and communicated with Amelia Earhart, who advised her to read her book. She did. It wasn't long after that she started flying lessons. Her WASP flying was in PT-19's and BT-13 Vultee's. She wrote us that "as far as my time with the WASP, it was the greatest experience of my life and I was very appreciative of being able to be flying and to serve my country." At the 2010 Salute to Veterans Honored Guests and Volunteers Banquet Mrs. Young received her bronze replica of the Congressional Gold Medal that was presented by a grateful nation to all the WWII Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP).
That says it all.