Paul F. Hibner was born June 24, 1932, in Dayton, Ohio, to Mary Ellen Flynn and Oscar Anthony Hibner. He passed away Monday, Oct. 8, 2012, in Alamogordo. He grew up in Sidney, Ohio, graduating from Holy Angels School in 1952. After graduation, he joined the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War and served his country in several locations stateside, as well as in Germany, Tripoli and Libya. During that time he developed a love for the F-86D, which remained very much his favorite plane the rest of his life - and he didn't hesitate to tell you that, either.
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After his military service he met the love of his life and soul mate, Darline Day, who became his wife June 15, 1957, in Dayton, Ohio. Over the 55 wonderful years of their marriage, the couple lived in Champaign, Ill.; Rome, N.Y.; Tipp City, Ohio; Newark, Ohio; and Kettering, Ohio, moving to Alamogordo in 1979. While employed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, he worked as an aircraft electrician, even working on experimental aircraft. He also worked on developing the prototype for the C-130 Gunship during the Vietnam War. While there and for 10 years, he worked as an electronic technician at Wright-Patterson's Aero Propulsion Lab under the famed Dr. Hans Von Ohain, the inventor of the jet engine for Germany. Then from 1979 until his retirement in 1988, he was an electronics technician at White Sands Missile Range.
Paul was a very loving and gentle soul who cherished his family and they him. Everyone so loved Paul's great sense of humor - and it was all with a straight face. He would have said, ""It was better to be a dry wit than a half wit or dim wit."" If someone would ask him how he was, he often said, ""I don't know - no one told me yet."" He loved to travel and many great memories were made ""on the road,"" sometimes traveling with the Los Paisanos Good Sam RV Club. In his later years, he enjoyed watching TV, especially the Discovery Channel and old ""Gunsmoke"" episodes.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Bill and Bob, of Ohio, as well as brother Tom, of Alamogordo; and his sister Mary Beth Hosack, of Fairborn, Ohio.
Paul is survived by his loving wife, Darline; two daughters, Carol Krauss (Ken), of Pinedale, Ariz., and Joan Hibner (Ed Parker), of Alamogordo; three sons, Mark Hibner (Vicki), of Las Cruces, and Chris Hibner (P.J. Van Ningen) and Greg Hibner (Manuela Heberle), of Alamogordo; and grandchildren Michael Hibner, of Alamogordo, and Leslie Hibner and Scott Hibner, of Las Cruces. Surviving step-grandchildren include Stephanie Marelich (Matt), of Reno, Nev.; Erik Heberle (Jennifer), of White Mountain Lakes, Ariz.; and Kay Hottenstine (Joe), of Bonduel, Wis., and great-granddaughter Kassidy Marelich, of Reno.
Also surviving are his sisters and brothers-in-law: Mart Hibner, of Alamogordo; Janice Armold and Betty Day, of Wilmington, Ohio; Roger Day (Sandra), of Springboro, Ohio; and Tom Day (Nancy), of Cedarville, Ohio.
He is also survived by nieces and nephews Marilyn Hoehne, of Marietta, Ga.; Rosie Greaney, of Dayton; Maria Gaerke (Greg), of Berea, Ky.; Ann Clune (Alan), of St. Henry, Ohio; Lori Morris, of Fairborn; Bill Jr. (Sandra), of Vandalia, Ohio; Walt Hibner (Joani), of Bellbrook, Ohio; Mike Hibner (Fran), of Boulder, Colo.; Scott Hibner (Ann), of Alamogordo; Jim Grothaus (Irene), of Albuquerque; Bob Hibner (Sharon) and Joe Hibner (Brianna), of Coldwater, Ohio; John Hibner (Laurie), of Mason, Ohio; Steve Prather, of Fairborn; Karen Walker (Ed), of Clarksville, Ohio; Brenda Sullivan (Mike), of Sabina, Ohio; Donald Armold, of Lebanon, Ohio; Bryan Armold (Vicki), of Lebanon; Steve Day, of Wilmington, Ohio; Doug Day (Sherry), of Harveysburg, Ohio; Susan Machinsky and Carl Daymon Spiller (Amber), of Florida; and many more. Also surviving is a host of grandnieces and nephews, cousins and friends.
A bit of us went with him to heaven, but a whole bunch of him will always remain here on earth with us in our hearts.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, 1100 Spaatz St., Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 45433 or Alamogordo Hospice, P.O. Drawer 29, 1859 Indian Wells Road, Alamogordo, NM 88311.
The Hibner family will greet friends from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 12, 2012, at Alamogordo Funeral Home.
A funeral Mass will be at St. Jude's Mission at 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012. Interment will follow at Monte Vista Cemetery.
To sign the online registration book, please visit www.hamiltonodell.com.
Published in Alamogordo Daily News from Oct. 11 to Oct. 18, 2012