Robert C. Konopka


Preferred Name: Bob
Nickname/Call Sign: Bob-O/Misty 70
Date Of Birth: August 25, 1939
Highest Military Grade Held: Colonel, O-6
Hometown: Royal Oak, MI

Biography

After attending flight school and receiving his commission, Bob was assigned to a B-52H crew during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Five years later he graduated at the top of his pilot training class and was thrilled to fly the F-100 with the 615TFS at Phan Rang. Bob was far from home on his first combat tour during the 1968 TET offensive and later as Misty 70 in North Vietnam while his wife Sally watched over their children: Kathy, Kim, Rob, and Jeff. Bob then flew F-100s and F-4Es with the 613th TFS and volunteered to fly a second combat tour in F-105G Wild Weasels in Thailand. He later transitioned to the F-16 with classmate Col Ron Fogleman (later Air Force Chief).
Bob is a Graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, served in the Air Force Fighter Division (near the purple water fountain) and later as a Division Chief in the Pentagon.
His last job before retiring from the USAF was Vice Commander of the 474th TFW under USAF Thunderbird solo pilot Mike Kerby.  
Bob’s awards include the Silver Star for Heroism 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses and 12 Air Medals
After retiring from the USAF, Bob and Sally enjoyed their life in sunny California while he worked for Ford Aerospace Lockheed Martin, and Viasat until his civilian retirement. Bob was married to Sally for 57 years and is the grandfather of 13.

Units Assigned

  • 1960-1961 Aviation Cadet class
  • 1961 Radar Nav Mather AFB, CA
  • 1961-1966 Cuban Missile Crisis, Kincheloe AFM, MI (B-52H)
  • Pilot Training Distinguished Graduate 67G, Reese AFB, TX
  • 1967 522nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, Cannon AFB, NM (F-100)
  • 1968 615th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Phan Rang, Vietnam (F-100)
  • 1968 Misty 70, Pilot Phu Cat AB, Vietnam (F-100)
  • 1969-1971 Pilot Flight Commander, Torrejon AB, Spain (F-100)
  • 1971-1973 Pilot Flight Commander Torrejon AB Spain (F-4E)
  • 1973-1974 F-105 Wild Weasel Pilot, Korat AB, Thailand (F-105)
  • 1974-1976 309/308 Tactical Fighter Squadron, Pilot/IP, Homestead AFB, FL (F-4E)
  • 1976-1977 Pentagon, XOOTT and Division Chief XOXFT
  • 1977-1980 Pentagon, HQ USAF Air Staff, Fighter Operations and Fighter Plans
  • 1980-1983 474th TFW Deputy for Operations and Wing Vice Commander
  • 8/1983 Retired USAF

Awards & Decorations

 Silver Star
 Distinguished Flying Cross (3)
 Meritorious Service Medal (3)
 Air Medal (12)

Flight Info

B-52 H
F-100
F-4E
F-105
F-16

Military Education

  • Military: Industrial College of the Armed Forces
  • 1960-1961 Aviation Cadet Navigator Training
  • 1966-1967 UPT, Reese AFB, TX
  • 1967-1968 Harlingen AFB, TX Radar Bomb School
  • 1967-1968 Gunnery School, Clovis AFB, NM

Civilian Education

  • 1974 BS, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University
  • 1980 MA, Central Michigan University
  • 1982 MBA, Florida State University

Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery during Bob's Memorial


Col. Robert Konopka (USAF ret.) – Headed West August 27, 2018
After fight school and commissioning Bob was assigned to a B-52H crew in the early 1960’s and during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Five years later he graduated at the top of pilot training class to fly the F-100 with the 615TFS at Phan Rang during the 1968 TET offensive and later as Misty 70 in North Vietnam while his wife Sally watched over, Kath, Kimberly, Rob, and Jeff. His awards include the Silver Star for Heroism and multiple Distinguished Flying Crosses and Air Medals

Afterward, Bob flew F-100s and F-4Es with the 613th TFS and volunteered to fly a second combat tour in F-105G Wild Weasels in Thailand. Bob is a Graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces Later and served in the Air Force Fighter Division (near the purple water fountain) and later as a Division Chief in the Pentagon and transitioned to the F-16 with classmate Col Ron Fogleman (later Air Force Chief). 

His last job was as the Vice Commander of the 474th TFW under the amazing USAF Thunderbird Mike Kerby.  Bob thrived in California working for Ford Aerospace Lockheed Martin, and Viasat until he retired. Bob was married to Sally for 57 years and is the grandfather of 13. Bob’s service was held on 12 September 2018 at St. Edward’s Catholic Church in Dana Point, CA.  Interment with Military Honors was on 13 Sept at 11:00 AM at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery. San Diego, CA. Several members of the Super Sabre Society attended.
Biography

Biography

After attending flight school and receiving his commission, Bob was assigned to a B-52H crew during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Five years later he graduated at the top of his pilot training class and was thrilled to fly the F-100 with the 615TFS at Phan Rang. Bob was far from home on his first combat tour during the 1968 TET offensive and later as Misty 70 in North Vietnam while his wife Sally watched over their children: Kathy, Kim, Rob, and Jeff. Bob then flew F-100s and F-4Es with the 613th TFS and volunteered to fly a second combat tour in F-105G Wild Weasels in Thailand. He later transitioned to the F-16 with classmate Col Ron Fogleman (later Air Force Chief).
Bob is a Graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, served in the Air Force Fighter Division (near the purple water fountain) and later as a Division Chief in the Pentagon.
His last job before retiring from the USAF was Vice Commander of the 474th TFW under USAF Thunderbird solo pilot Mike Kerby.  
Bob’s awards include the Silver Star for Heroism 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses and 12 Air Medals
After retiring from the USAF, Bob and Sally enjoyed their life in sunny California while he worked for Ford Aerospace Lockheed Martin, and Viasat until his civilian retirement. Bob was married to Sally for 57 years and is the grandfather of 13.

Units - Education - Awards - Flight Info

Units Assigned

  • 1960-1961 Aviation Cadet class
  • 1961 Radar Nav Mather AFB, CA
  • 1961-1966 Cuban Missile Crisis, Kincheloe AFM, MI (B-52H)
  • Pilot Training Distinguished Graduate 67G, Reese AFB, TX
  • 1967 522nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, Cannon AFB, NM (F-100)
  • 1968 615th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Phan Rang, Vietnam (F-100)
  • 1968 Misty 70, Pilot Phu Cat AB, Vietnam (F-100)
  • 1969-1971 Pilot Flight Commander, Torrejon AB, Spain (F-100)
  • 1971-1973 Pilot Flight Commander Torrejon AB Spain (F-4E)
  • 1973-1974 F-105 Wild Weasel Pilot, Korat AB, Thailand (F-105)
  • 1974-1976 309/308 Tactical Fighter Squadron, Pilot/IP, Homestead AFB, FL (F-4E)
  • 1976-1977 Pentagon, XOOTT and Division Chief XOXFT
  • 1977-1980 Pentagon, HQ USAF Air Staff, Fighter Operations and Fighter Plans
  • 1980-1983 474th TFW Deputy for Operations and Wing Vice Commander
  • 8/1983 Retired USAF

Awards & Decorations

 Silver Star
 Distinguished Flying Cross (3)
 Meritorious Service Medal (3)
 Air Medal (12)

Flight Info

B-52 H
F-100
F-4E
F-105
F-16

Military Education

  • Military: Industrial College of the Armed Forces
  • 1960-1961 Aviation Cadet Navigator Training
  • 1966-1967 UPT, Reese AFB, TX
  • 1967-1968 Harlingen AFB, TX Radar Bomb School
  • 1967-1968 Gunnery School, Clovis AFB, NM

Civilian Education

  • 1974 BS, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University
  • 1980 MA, Central Michigan University
  • 1982 MBA, Florida State University
Photos
Video

Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery during Bob's Memorial

Headed West


Col. Robert Konopka (USAF ret.) – Headed West August 27, 2018
After fight school and commissioning Bob was assigned to a B-52H crew in the early 1960’s and during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Five years later he graduated at the top of pilot training class to fly the F-100 with the 615TFS at Phan Rang during the 1968 TET offensive and later as Misty 70 in North Vietnam while his wife Sally watched over, Kath, Kimberly, Rob, and Jeff. His awards include the Silver Star for Heroism and multiple Distinguished Flying Crosses and Air Medals

Afterward, Bob flew F-100s and F-4Es with the 613th TFS and volunteered to fly a second combat tour in F-105G Wild Weasels in Thailand. Bob is a Graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces Later and served in the Air Force Fighter Division (near the purple water fountain) and later as a Division Chief in the Pentagon and transitioned to the F-16 with classmate Col Ron Fogleman (later Air Force Chief). 

His last job was as the Vice Commander of the 474th TFW under the amazing USAF Thunderbird Mike Kerby.  Bob thrived in California working for Ford Aerospace Lockheed Martin, and Viasat until he retired. Bob was married to Sally for 57 years and is the grandfather of 13. Bob’s service was held on 12 September 2018 at St. Edward’s Catholic Church in Dana Point, CA.  Interment with Military Honors was on 13 Sept at 11:00 AM at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery. San Diego, CA. Several members of the Super Sabre Society attended.
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