Colonel Marcus C. West
Colonel Marcus C. West, USAF Ret., of Yankeetown, FL, died June 16, 2014. He was 93. Mr. West was born in Greenville, SC, the son of B.F. and Marie West.
In World War II, Col. West delivered bombers to England in the Ferry Command, and was selected for pilot training with the US Navy. One of only 100 Army pilots, Col. West received Naval aviator wings after completing the program at Pensacola. For the duration of World War II, he trained other pilots to fly air-sea rescue in Hawaii. In 1948, he flew 146 missions in the Berlin Airlift. In the Korean War, he flew air-sea rescue patrols. Later, Col. West and his wife ran a gas station, a restaurant, and a motel. During that time, he also flew reserve transport missions. In 1960, Col. West took command of an air-sea rescue unit in Homestead, FL. He later headed tactical airlift and air support commands in Mobile, AL, and Montgomery, AL. From 1968 to 1970, he worked at the Pentagon.
Col. West will be remembered not only for his military career, but also for his drive to raise his family's standard of living. From having one pair of shoes a year (handed down among his four brothers), Col. West was able to send his children to college and build a retirement home for his wife, and help his daughter and son-in-law build a vacation home in his home valley.
Col. West is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Mary and Doug Owens; his granddaughter and husband, Amy and Jonathan Pruden; and great-grandchildren, Abigail and William. His son, Marcus Kenneth, died in 1995.
Services for Col. West will be Friday, June 20 at 2:00 p.m. at North Fork Baptist Church with visitation prior starting at 1:00 p.m.
Thomas McAfee Funeral Home, Northwest.
Published in The Greenville News on June 19, 2014
Thomas McAfee Funeral Home - Northwest Chapel
6710 White Horse Road Greenville, SC 29611