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Thomas Richard "Dick" (Col. USAF Ret.), age 82, passed away peacefully and surrounded by family after a valiant 28-year battle with Parkinson's disease. He was preceded in death by his loving wife of 56 years, Patricia Meyers (nee Diersing), his parents Charles and Lois Meyers, brothers David, Charles and Paul, and sister Lois. He is survived by 4 daughters, Shauna (Stan) Adams of Englewood, Ohio; Tara (Tom) Koenig of Beavercreek, Ohio; Pamela (Chris) Schaefer of Kettering, Ohio; Erin (Chris) Barlow of Vandalia, Ohio; 8 granddaughters, Meredith Adams, Maura Koenig, Jillian Adams, Hannah Koenig, Paige Barlow, Hope Barlow, Emma Schaefer, Grace Schaefer; one grandson, Noah Koenig; one sister, Jane Ruttle of Fort Mitchell, Kentucky and many treasured nieces and nephews. Dick proudly served his country as an Air Force pilot, chief engineer, defense intelligence specialist and program director. He was a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War and worked with NASA during the Mercury Project where he piloted a chase plane spotting Astronaut John Glen upon his return from the historic first manned Earth orbit. Dick was born in Covington, KY, graduated in 1948 from Dixie Heights High School in Fort Wright , KY, attended Villa Madonna College, and earned bachelors and masters degrees from the Air Force Institute of Technology. He was a member of the 55K flight training class and flew over 30 aircraft in his career. He also served as a test pilot in Florida and pilot for the Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe. After retiring with the rank of Colonel from the Air Force, Dick worked at The Analytic Sciences Corporation, TASC, as Operations Director. Dick was a remote control airplane enthusiast, accomplished boater and avid Bengals and UD Flyers fan. He was a skilled handyman who could fix almost anything. He was a long time and faithful member of St. Helen Parish and was immensely thankful for the support of Church staff and parish community. He was also especially thankful for his Trinity Retirement Community family who cared for him with great compassion for over 6 years. The family will receive visitors at St Helen Catholic Church, 5080 Burkhardt Rd. on Thursday, January 31, 2013 from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at the church on Thursday at 1:00 pm with interment immediately following at Calvary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Helen Catholic Church. Condolence may be expressed at www.tobiasfuneralhome.com
Published in The Cincinnati Enquirer on Jan. 30, 2013