PERBETSKY, Lt. Colonel George
George Perbetsky, was born in Nesquehoning, Pa. in 1919. George passed away peacefully at the age of 94 on February 28, 2014.
He is survived by his wife, Hanny(aka Connie) Perbetsky, her two children, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. George is also survived by his eldest son, Michael, wife Patricia, younger son, Stephan, three grandsons and two great-grandsons.
George was born to immigrant parents from Austria-Hungary, He rose from working in the coal mines to a lifelong career, flying all over the world. George was drafted into the Army before WWII and sent to Camp Croft, South Carolina where he went through Basic Training and was retained as an infantry instructor.
He applied to the aviation cadet program of the Army Air Corps and was accepted in 1942. He focused on being checked out on flying airplanes beginning with the Stearman and the B-17. His next assignment was to join the 463rd (Swoose) Bomb Group in Tampa, Florida where he prepared to fly in the European Theatre. Capt. Perbetsky was selected to lead missions over the seven capitals of occupied Europe, including six missions into Ploesti.
When he returned to the U.S. in 1944 after 54 missions, George volunteered for a second combat tour, and was assigned to the Pacific theatre, but during checkout in the B-29, the war ended. George then became an instructor in phase training of the B-17 crews scheduled to go overseas. Then on to Tucson to fly the KB-29s. While there he automatically joined the Caterpillar Club the day he had to jump out of a burning aircraft somewhere between Pecos and Fort Stockton, Texas.
In 1947 the Army Air Corps became The U.S. Air Force. About that time, George was flying the Pacific and stationed at Hickman Air Force Base in Hawaii, where he was assigned to the 7th Air Division Operations and Training Staff.
Having chosen to stay in the service after WWII, George was directly involved in the Korean War. Assigned to the 98th Bomb Wing out of Yakota, Japan, it was Lieutenant Colonel Perbetsky who was Chief of Combat Operations, responsible for planning, briefing, flying and critiquing missions. He led the last daylight bombing formation mission before Black October Week.
Next was March Field, California, where George was Plans and Operations Officer and joined the jet conversion checking out in the T-33 and B-47. From March AFB, he went to SAC Headquarters Plans Division in Omaha, Nebraska. While there, George earned a Bachelors Degree at the University of Omaha. George, then was assigned to a clandestine location in Bucks, England for three and a half years. Because of the demand for bomber pilots at that time, George found himself again at Mather Field in Sacramento flying B-52s for his next assignment.
Shouldnt fighting in two wars be enough? No, the Vietnam War was next. George checked out in C-130s in Tennessee, and as a pilot and squadron commander, flew support out of Taiwan for our troops in Vietnam and in the SE Asia area. When his tour was completed, he volunteered for another overseas assignment and was sent to the European Airborne Command Post in England. After that, George returned once again to Taiwan for another tour in support of Vietnam as a Pilot and Squadron Commander.
In 1971, George hung up his wings. He retired out of Pope AFB in North Carolina, and moved to Rancho Cordova, CA with 28 years of flying time to his credit, in addition to his earlier service. More time for golf! said George with a smile.
The family wishes to extend a special thank-you to Georges caregivers and the Rocklin Fire Department, Truck 24.
Internment at Arlington National Cemetery.
Celebration of Life Saturday, March 15, 2014 at 1:00 pm The Gables at Springfield 2801 Springfield Drive Rocklin, CA 95765 Phone: (916) 630-4330 DIRECTIONS: Corner of Crest and Park Entrance Gate #10 Springfield
Donations may be made to: Parkinsons Disease Foundation 1359 Broadway, Suite 1509 New York, NY 10018
Published in The Sacramento Bee on Mar. 9, 2014