George J. Hoerter, Lt. Col., United State Air Force (Ret.), 92, passed away Monday, Aug. 19, 2013.
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He spent 31 years in the U.S. Air Force, and served as a bomber pilot in WWII, flying B-24's. He flew C-47s and C-46s during the Korean conflict, and was the base executive officer at U-Tapao, Thailand, a B-52 base during Vietnam. He served as an assistant Air Force Attache in Karachi, Pakistan, and was the base commander of RAF Chicksands in England. He had three tours of duty, for a total of 10 years, at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, serving as a student and instructor at the Squadron Officer School, student at the Air Command and Staff College, Aide-de-camp to the Commandant of the Air War College, and as the director of assignments at Headquarters Air University. He was also a member of the Inspector Generals Staff at Headquarters United States Air Force Security Service at Kelly Air Force Base, Texas for five years.
After retiring in 1974 he worked for the Mass Mutual Life Insurance Company in Montgomery, Ala. and Lebanon, Ky. He and his wife, May La Motte, moved to Lebanon in 1980 where they renovated an historic home on S. Harrison St., now designated as the 'Litsey Place' by the Kentucky Historical and Preservation Society.
He has been a member of St. Augustine Church, and served as chairman of the parish council in the early 1980s, and has been a member of adult choir since 1981. He was active in community affairs, as a member of the Lebanon Planning and Zoning Commission from 1987 to 2006, board member and president of the Lebanon/Marion County Chamber of Commerce in the late 1980s, a member of the charter class of Leadership Lebanon/Marion County in 1987. During Kentucky's bicentennial celebration in 1992, he was vice-chairman and treasurer of the Marion County Bicentennial Group. When the Marion County Historical Society was re-established in 1993, he served as treasurer for several years - from 1995 to 2001, he served as a member and chairman of the Marion/ Washington County Airport Board, during which time the runway was extended to 5,000 feet.
He was a life member of the Knights of Columbus and served as warden for several years. He was also honored as a Kentucky Colonel. In 1992 he was recognized as the Chamber's Outstanding Member, and in 2001 the Chambers Outstanding Citizen. In 2005 the airfield at the Lebanon/Springfield Airport was designated 'George J. Hoerter Field' in his honor.
He was preceded in death by: his parents, Arthur and Verna Scheible Hoerter; and two brothers, Dr. John E. Hoerter Jr. and Charles Hoerter.
Survivors include: his wife, May La Motte Smith Hoerter of Lebanon; two sons, George (Joe) Hoerter Jr. (Eureka) and Sam Hoerter (Nancy); two daughters, Dorothy "Dottie" Lewis (John) and Mollie Washburne (Richard); and six grandchildren, Amye Lewis, Spalding Lewis, Alison Matsunaga, Ph.D., Joe Hoerter, Ben Washburne, and George Hoerter.
A Mass of Christian burial was held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Aug. 23, at St. Augustine Catholic Church with interment in the Spalding plot in the church cemetery. Rev. Jerry Bell officiated.
Active pallbearers were Ben Washburne, Joe Hoerter, George Washburne, Frank Southall, Jim Hoerter, and Paul Southall.
Honorary pallbearers were members of the Knights of Columbus.
Bosley Funeral Home, Lebanon, was in charge of arrangements.
Published in The Lebanon Enterprise on Aug. 28, 2013