07 Sep 2009
Daily Oklahoman, The
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
June 16, 2005, page 15A
Retired Air Force general dies at 78
Billy Martin Minter, an Oklahoma native and a retired
four-star Air Force general died June 6 at the age of 78 in Warrenton, Va.
Minter was born in Oklahoma City in 1926 and graduated from Norman High
School in 1942 before serving in World War II. In 1948, he entered the Air
Force as an aviation cadet.
He received his Air Force commission and pilot wings in 1949 and later took
assignments with the Air Training Command as a flight instructor, followed
by a series of operational assignments with various Fighter-Interceptor
Squadrons around the world.
After graduating with distinction from the Air War College, Minter joined
the 355th Tactical Fighter Wing at Takhli Royal Thai Air Base in Thailand,
where he later assumed command of the 345th Tactical Fighter Squadron while
racking up more than 106 combat missions. He then was appointed chief of the
F-111 System Management Division and later worked in logistics.
In June, 1982, Minter took a position as commander of Allied Air Forces
Central Europe and commander in Chief of United States Air Forces in Europe
at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, before retiring in 1984 after 38 years of
service. In that time, Minter tallied 5,600 flying hours and received
military decorations and honors including the Distinguished Service Medal,
Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star and several others.
Full military honors for Minter will be held at Arlington National Cemetery
in Virginia on June 28.
Billy M. Minter, 78, a fighter pilot and four-star general who served
as Commander in Chief, U.S. Air Forces in Europe, and Commander,
Allied Forces Central Europe, died June 6, 2005, of coronary artery
disease at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.
General Minter, who lived in Warrenton, was born in Oklahoma City,
Oklahoma. After serving in the Navy during World War II, he attended
Oklahoma University in Norman. In 1961, he graduated from the Air
Command and Staff College and in 1968 was graduated with distinction
from the Air War College. He was commissioned as an officer in the U.S.
Air Force in 1949. He was promoted to General July 1, 1982, retired Oct 31, 1984.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Marion Minter of Warrenton;
five children, Mark H. Minter of Leadville, Colorado, Stephen L.
Minter of Tucson, Arizona, Patricia Minter-Powell of Watertown, New
York, Lisa M. Minter of Southampton, Massachusetts, and Lori J. Minter
of Williamsburg, Virginia; and 11 grandchildren.
Also surviving is one brother, Robert W. Minter of Wynnewood, Oklahoma.
Sources: good faith fair use of sources stated above
Compiled, transcribed and submitted by Marti Graham, Oklahoma County, OKGenWeb Coordinator,
December 2008. Information
posted for educational purposes for viewers and researchers. The contributor is not
related to nor researching any of the above.
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