King, Ivan John
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Born February 4, 1924 died March 4, 2013 surrounded by loved ones in Scottsdale, Arizona. Ivan is survived by his five children: Susan, Diane, John, Cindy, & Roger; 5 grandchildren, 11 great grandchildren & 1 great great grandchild. Ivan was born and raised in Detroit and entered the Army Air Corps at the beginning of WWII. Ivan did well in flight school and was assigned as an instructor pilot. He married Dorothy Smith, moved to California, bought their first home and he attended Whittier College using the GI Bill. Ivan worked in a Firestone Tire plant during college and while playing semi-pro football. When the Korean Conflict began Ivan joined the United States Air Force. Ivan's military career included flying C-47's (Gooney-Birds) & B-47's, drew attack maps, led a Civil Engineer squadron, commanded a Titan I missile silo, 'secret' duties in Istanbul, ran the Officer's Club and was Executive Officer to the Base Commander then the Wing Commander. Most of his assignments were in the western United States, but was assigned to Greenland, Germany, and Turkey. Ivan's retirement job was golf and he quickly became a low-80's golfer. He met and married Marion Rolf, retired Army Colonel and nurse; they travelled frequently to visit family, play golf tournaments, and attend college world series. Ivan was a study in contrasts. He raised a US flag every morning and retired it appropriately every evening, baked family-favorite IJ-bread, fed birds in his yard, rode his bicycle every morning, and created hand-made rugs that have become family heirlooms. Big Band Music was huge in Ivan's life; he whistled (and whistled, and whistled). Family members, friends, and caregivers all remember the lovely sound of Ivan's whistle, a sound we miss and will never hear again. The family plans a private service.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Mar. 17, 2013