Roy Gill peacefully passed away on No` vember 15, 2016, at Rideout Hospital after a brief illness. Roy was born to Alan and Marion Woolverton in Southgate, CA on September 28, 1929.
Roy grew up in San Mateo, graduating from San Mateo High School in 1947 where he developed life-long friendships and graduated from University of Omaha in 1965. Roy enlisted in the Army, but his Uncle Alex, who he viewed as a brother, drove up from Los Angeles and convinced him to join the Air Force instead, a decision which he was very grateful for his entire life.
Roy started out enlisted and became a "mustang" when he went to Aviation Cadets and became a pilot. Flying was his life's passion. He served honorably for 22 years rising to the level of Lt. Colonel and served in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. His flying acumen and bravery earned him numerous awards including Bronze Stars and several Distinguished Flying Crosses with Valor.
He proudly served his country with honor and distinction and would be pretty miffed if we highlighted his achievements too much. Like many who served in that era, he didn't talk about the hardships and focused on his love of country, honor, and service and was always amazed and grateful he was paid to fly.
Roy was passionate about God, family, and politics and to know him was to know these things. He met and married the love of his life, Virginia Anderson, while stationed in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1962. They welcomed son Bill while stationed in Rome, New York in 1968. Dad was sent to the Vietnam War when she was pregnant with son, Dave. Virginia and Bill went to live with her parents in Minnesota where Dave was born in Fargo, North Dakota in 1970. Dad finally got to meet Dave when he safely came home in 1971 when Dave was 6 months old.
They were transferred to Beale Air Force Base where he retired in September 1972 and welcomed his retirement present, Julie. He enjoyed his retirement years raising his kids, running his private flying business, fishing with his sons, golfing and making custom golf clubs. He loved having family and friends come to visit and would always have a pot of coffee ready to sit and chat over. He was never happier than when he got to tell stories and pull pranks on those he loved.
Roy is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Virginia, son Bill and his wife Ruth, son Dave and his wife Rachel, and daughter Julie and her husband Dan Shuffield. He is also survived by grandchildren BJ, Joey, Mikey, Lexie, Gracie, Hana, Abigail, Thomas, Emily, Ally, Magnus, Addison and Grayson, and great granddaughters Taylur, Skylar and Cambria.
Roy was preceded in death by his parents, sister Juanita Carlisle, brother Richard Gill, daughter in law Catherine Gill, and many beloved friends and family members. He also is joyously holding the baby he and and Virginia never got to know on earth.
A Celebration of Life will be held at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church on Saturday, November 19th at 11:00 a.m. with a reception immediately following at the church. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to St. Andrew Presbyterian Church.
Published in Appeal Democrat on Nov. 18, 2016