Cary, Ronald V. "Ron"
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WWW II B-24 Bomber Pilot, Gardner,
31-Year Employee of FAA/Chemung County Airport
Elmira: Age 88, completed his final mission on Sunday, March 17, 2013. Born on July 22, 1924 and raised in Elmira, he was called Ron or Ronnie by family and friends. His father was Harry Raub Cary, owner of Cary's Pharmacy located for decades on 115 E. Church Street. Ron was a 1942 graduate of Elmira Free Academy (EFA) and enlisted in the Army Air Corps (Army Air Forces) during his senior year of high school. He turned 18 that summer of '42. Though he did not yet have a driver's license, Ron trained for and became a B-24 Liberator bomber pilot, serving his country in the European Theater of operations with the 724th Bombardment Squadron, 451st Bombardment Group. During late-1944 into 1945, he piloted missions over Austria, Yugoslavia and Romania. Ron was awarded the European African Middle Eastern Theater Campaign Ribbon, Air Medal and the World War II Victory Medal. Ron left the United States Air Force with the rank of Captain. For decades after WWII, Ron stayed connected with the 451st Bombardment Group via newsletters and updates from the 451st Bombardment Group Association. Ron's Elmira home was filled with books, drawings and photos about the B-24 Liberator heavy bomber. Ronnie met his best friend and the love of his life Doris (Chamberlain) during their school days together. Classmates, they both graduated from EFA in 1942. After WWII, Ronnie began dating Doris and they were married on July 15, 1950. They celebrated their very special 50th wedding anniversary with family in New Orleans in 2000 and July 15, 2013 would have marked their 63rd wedding anniversary. Ron and Doris for many, many years were involved with classmates that organized reunions of the Elmira Free Academy class of 1942. Ronnie worked for the Federal Aviation Association for 31 years, and other than brief stints in Buffalo, NY, Dayton, OH, and Louisville, KY, he worked at the then Chemung County Airport (Elmira Flight Service Station) for nearly 25 years. He loved talking with pilots from all over the country. Ron was a handyman and could build, repair or put together most anything. From basements, porches and valances, to bookcases, tables and more, Ronnie could build it. His hobby passions included gardening, small model railroad trains, reading and history, and he was a life-long stamp collector and member of the Elmira Stamp Club. Doris and Ron shared a love and passion for gardening for nearly 60 years at homes in Horseheads, and later, when they returned to Elmira. The yards and grounds of their homes were filled with terraced gardens, rock gardens, flower beds, and vegetable gardens. Ron also enjoyed animals and had many cats as pets over the years, but his favorite pet was his Saint Bernard, Greta. Mr. Cary is survived by his wife of nearly 63 years, Doris (Chamberlain) Cary of The Courtyards at Bethany Village; two children, Peter C. Cary of West Trenton, New Jersey and Susan Cary Channell of Panama City, Florida; as well as four grandchildren, many family members and friends. He was predeceased by his parents, Harry Raub Cary and Lora Alberta Vanbuskirk Cary, and his sister, June (Cary) Glendening. Friends are invited to McInerny Funeral Home, 502 W. Water Street, on Monday, March 25, 2013 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Funeral services to follow at 3:30 p.m. Military honors will be accorded at the end of the service. Ron will be interred at Woodlawn Cemetery in Elmira on Tuesday, March 26, 2013.
McInerny Funeral Home
502 W. Water St.
Elmira, NY 14901
Published in Star-Gazette from Mar. 21 to Mar. 24, 2013