John D. Yamnicky Sr.
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JOHN D. YAMNICKY SR., 71, of Waldorf, Md., was a retired naval aviator, but worked as a defense contractor for Veridian Corp. since his retirement as captain in 1979. His son, John Yamnicky, said his father worked on the development of the F/A-18 fighter jet. John Yamnicky Sr., was on a business trip on American Flight 77. After graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1952, he became a Navy test pilot, flying an A-4 attack plane and would sometimes tell stories of his travels and Navy service in Korea and Vietnam. "He crash-landed five times and walked away from them each," said Cindy Sharpley, a friend of the family. "But not this last one."

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Published in The State Journal-Register on Sep. 13, 2001.
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65 entries
September 17, 2020
Thank you so much for your service. He sounds like an incredible man. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of John's family and friends who still mourn this loss. We will never forget.
McKell Swain
January 26, 2016
Thanks for your service to our country. I pray for special blessings today for your friends and family. We will never forget. Love from Texas
Del Newberry
September 8, 2013
You are still in our hearts, Yam!!

Know that we carry you with us while doing our work for the fleet every day. Keep looking down on us all, guiding us with your strong spirit.

God bless you as well as the family, friends, and co-workers you left behind.

We miss you so very much and still have your photo in a special place our office.

We will never forget... never.
Randy A
April 19, 2013
Great, you are the man.
Jorma Isolerssi
December 20, 2012
To The Family,
I did not know Mr. John D. Yamnicky Sr., but by reading the obituary he was an outstanding individual.
May the love of friends and family carry you through your grief.

Mr. Terry of NC
July 12, 2012
I was roaming the internet and was floored to find this mr yamnicky was an extrodinary man who I happened to look up to.this is a tragedy that never should of happened my arms are wrapped around the family especially you jennifer at time of sorrow that will never pass.
brenda shiro
June 27, 2012
Love the iste
John Paul
March 26, 2012
Goodnight sweet prince
Nick Kulik
November 28, 2011
Was a pretty cool guy, and doesn't afraid of anything. His eye patch was epic.
James Shirley
October 8, 2011
Hugh Stoofy
September 8, 2011
I don't know you John but I wear your name on my wrist. I bought a 9-11 bracelet at the World Trade Center Museum. At the time 9-11 happened, I was an EMT in Los Angeles CA. Now I work in the ER with special training Anti-terrorism. I wear your name proudly on every holiday and on each 9-11 anniversary. In fact, I am wearing it right now. This is the first time that I have read about you. I was always honored to remember you by name but even more honored now that I know who you are. Your name sits on my dresser when I am not wearing it. Thank you Sir for your service to our country but even more so for being a great man. My deepest condolences to your family for your life being cut short. I will be thinking of you and them for the rest of my life because of this band.
Christy H
December 17, 2010
I never knew John, but his son John Jr. and daughter Lorraine were friends of mine at Salisbury State back in the early 80's. I was searching around for old classmates today, and my search for John Jr. led me to several articles about his father. What a remarkable man. It would have been a pleasure and an honor to have known him.
Patrick Curran
September 11, 2009
Yamnicky Family

We were talking about John today and remembering him on this day. We always display his picture along with Brian Sweeney's on the wall outside our office door. We always enjoyed working with John and we will never forget. I will be retiring this year and I told my co-worker (Tom Feld) that he will have to take over for me.

Our Thoughts and Prayers go out to the family.

Carol Jordan
Naval Mission Planning Program
Pt Mugu, CA
Carol Jordan
September 11, 2009
I was stationed with Lt Yamnicky in VU-10 at Quantanamo Bay Naval Air Station in 1955 & 1956. I was Plane Captian on JD-1 (#21 Mallard) and we flew several hours together. We both were kids at that time and we both enjoyed our time flying. One day when we were waiting clearance to take off, he took out his shark knife and started scratching his initials in the yoke, I fussed at him for that and he joked it off. Because he was large in stature, we joked about greasing him down so we could get him into the cockpit of the small fighters. He broke the parking brake pedtal on my plane and it took me several hours to repair it. After that I watched and cautioned him when he used it. He was truly a gentleman and treated me like and equal even though I was an Enlised man. He was tops in my book. He was one of the best Officers that I served with.

Monte M Cassels AD2
Tampa, FL
Monte Cassels
September 11, 2009
Today we remember John and his service to our country.My Father was so proud to call John his life long friend.
We will not forget.
Holly Hopke Greene
on behalf of
Reed C. Hopke, Sr.
September 11, 2009
Remembering Skipper Yamnicky on this infamous day. I was a boot JG fresh out of flight school when I joined CAG 8 in Shangri-La. He was a giant of a man in size and presence.
Jack Kennerly
September 8, 2009
To the family of John D. Yamnicky, Sr.:
John gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. My deepest sympathy to you. We must never forget!
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
Peggy Childers
August 27, 2009
CDR Yamnicky CO VA-172 Ramstein AFB
I remember Captain Yamnicky well. I was a member of VA-172 from June 1966 – Oct 1969. He was XO and later became CO of the squadron during that time. He was a great skipper and respected his men regardless of their rank. He was also well liked and respected by his men. My sincere thoughts and prayers go out to his family for their great loss. I have attached a picture of the CO taken at Ramstein AFB in 1969 when we were on detachment there for a base COC ceremony.
Terry Johnson
July 31, 2009
While serving with VA-172 Bluebolts I got to know Captain Yamnicky when he was the XO. I remember him as a very kind officer and gentleman. I learned alot from him and the Navy. He was a very respected Skipper and well liked by his men, officers and enlisted. Skipper and the men serving with him became one of the best A4 Squardron during that time. Mt thoughts are with him and all. I frequently look through my cruise books which gives me great memories. I send my condolences out to the Skipper's family.
Edward Trudeau
June 18, 2009
I stumbled upon this nice site by accident. Although I never had the pleasure of meeting Captain Yamnicky personally, I did have the pleasure of working with his wonderful daughter, Jennifer. Now I realize that we have more in common. John served on the USS Ranger in the 60's - I served on the Ranger in the 80's. John served with
VA-172, the Bluebolts, I served with VA-176, the Thunderbolts.
After 9/11, I always knew that there was someone I had contact with who either died on that horrible day, or whose immediate family was affected by it. I spent many years at Andrews AFB and shared beers with people who worked daily in the Pentagon, but lived on base. I always worried that one of them died at the Pentagon that morning. Until today- I never knew Jennifer's Dad was taken.
Now I know where she got the good qualities that make her a great person.
My heartfelt condolences go out to Jennifer and her family! God Bless!!
Bill Keogh
June 8, 2009
Happy Birthday; Fair Winds & Following Seas!!!
Doug Abraham
December 26, 2008
I had the unique honor to serve as John's Assistant Operations Officer in VA-146. We made a combat deployment together on USS RANGER in 1966. John was a great leader, a true warrior, and an American patriot. I was fortunate to spend a weekend with him at a Tailhook reunion some 10 years ago. I was devastated to hear of his loss. My heart goes out to the Yamnicky family. I will never forget John with his ready smile and friendly manner, rest in peace my Shipmate.
CDR Hugh Magee
September 12, 2008
It's so hard to believe it's been seven years. I was driving home from a conference in North Carolina yesterday and all the talk on the radio focused on remembering you and everyone who died with you. You were such a sweet and wonderful man and you were taken from us far too soon. I thank God each day for your fellow service members who have fought so hard since that aweful day to make sure no one else is ever taken in such a manner again. You would be proud of them. Thank you for all the kindness you showed me in the time we worked together. I will always treasure my memories of you. God Bless.
Diana Lancaster
September 12, 2008
Oh, Dear God., you've taken, a truly Sweet and Kind Man, and individual.
I used to work with him, some years ago, in NAVAIR - Crystal City, VA., He'd brighten my days when I saw his smile. Back in the Mid/late 90's. I wished I had taken MORE time, with him, to know him better., and his prestigous career. Just a Sweetheart. He always, took to the time, to stop by, and say "Hi"., or ask "How I was doing".
Michele P. Lee Stewart
September 12, 2008

Remember me when I am gone away,
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you plann'd:
Only remember me; you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.

By Christina Rossetti
The Poetry Foundation

Michele Lee Stewart
September 11, 2008
I remember Captain Yamnicky(Commander at the time) when I was a member of VA-172 Bluebolts during Viet Nam War. He was XO and later became CO of the squadron.He was always a gentleman and respected his men regardless of their rank.(Enlisted men as well as his fellow officers) He was a man that loved his country and was well liked by his squadron. Please accept this as my sincere thoughts and prayers for your family as you continue to heal from this terrible tragedy.

Ed Barrs(Madison,Fl)
Ed Barrs, Jr.
September 11, 2008
From all of us in the Crystal City office of John's company, we want you to know we have not forgotten John. We miss his kind and loving presence every day. With the memorial being dedicated today, we have a tribute we can see from our office windows. John will always be in our prayers.
Ella Lancaster
September 11, 2008
I had the pleasure of working with John at Veda. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family in your time of grief and remembrance. May your memories bring you comfort.
Mary Booker
September 11, 2008
I remember Mr. Yamnicky as my C.O. with VA-172 in 1969. He was a caring man and profoundly respected by all who served with him.
Randy Schneidt
June 20, 2008
Your children and grandchildren have wonderful memories and I know you would be proud of them. We all love you and miss you so much. I find you in my dreams and my prayers. I love you C Pie
Jann Yamnicky
June 8, 2008
Happy Birthday!!!
Doug Abraham
December 21, 2007
Rest in peace Mr. Yamnicky!
September 12, 2007
In memory..
September 10, 2007
Dear J Cake, Tomorrow will be the 6th anniversary of your leaving us. We still miss you so much, and there is so much a part of you in all that we do and are. You truly left a legacy in your children and grandchildren. I know you are proud of them, and their loving and wonderful qualities. You will be with us always, and in our love and prayers. "My love always" C.Pie
Jann Yamnicky
September 10, 2007
I never had the honor of knowing Mr. Yamnicky; last year I sponsored a flag flown at the "Field of Flags" memorial at Kennesaw National Battlefield in Kennesaw, GA. My flag was flown in honor of Mr. Yamnicky. I just wanted you to know you are in my prayers, and I will fly his flag proudly.
Whitney Wilde
August 31, 2007
Daddy - the anniversary time is coming up again so quickly. Like Mark........ I miss you, day and night. He is so right.... because still it is hard to fathom the world could go on without you. I work in your Program Office now, supporting the Warfighter, as you did, and still swing my head around looking for you. Pride and Honor, Honor and Pride - that is what you did for all of us. I too am touched by those who have signed this guestbook. My Love always.
Lorraine Yamnicky Dixon
August 27, 2007
Dearest Yamnicky Family,
I was reading old articles on De La Brooke Foxhounds W today and was saddened to hear of your loss. My family lived in St. Mary's County from 1960 until 1979. My father was a retired Naval Aviator and was a rep. for North American Aviation / Flight Test at Pax River (Dick Bradley). My family had horses and my parents were non-riding members of the then Wicomico Hunt in 1965(?). It was only by accident that I came across Capt. Yamnicki's name today. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
Cynthia Bradley Brenton
July 19, 2007
In memory....
P Tabbernor
June 5, 2007
Hi dad. I miss ya... as does the rest of the family, and many others as well. Its hard to fathom the world could go on without you. There exists a part of you in a part of me and like you could do so well, I try to put my best foot forward and make those around me happy. I also appreciate you keeping an eye on me every time I'm racing the bike. I'm doing well this year and with you keeping watch, I feel I can push it harder and faster. I took a break and stopped to read this guest book. So many people have left messages. It really touches my heart... and my eyes. People ya know, people ya don't know... thanks to all these peoples.
Mark Yamnicky
October 24, 2006
hey i'm in 5th grade and codys get 1000000 of these.
Cody Spalding
September 11, 2006
My name is Cody I am a 6th grader at Patterson elementary. Today our teacher asked us to read some of the tributes to the people who were lost on Sept. 11, 2001 and leave our own tribute. I saw the tribute to Mr. John D. Yamnicky Sr.and I thought he looks like such a nice man and then I learned that he was a pilot in the navy and it is my dream to fly the f-117. I am sorry for your loss and I wish I could have known him myself. As long as I am alive Mr. Yamnick and all the others will never be forgotten.
Cody Johnson
September 10, 2006
To the Yamnicky Family, this great man is what this country is about. I thank God we had a man like this man fighting for our freedom during the Korean and Vietnam Wars. God be with you at this time of loss as we pray for you all.
Blake Gregory
January 25, 2005
I met John several times and he had been to my home for a party that was held for his son and daughter in law. To this day I still remember and will never forget!
Robert White
September 11, 2003
Dear Mr. Yamnicky,

While I never had the honor of meeting you, I did know your son, John (“Rod”), at Salisbury State. Reading your guest book I now realize the genesis of John’s kind character.

It’s been two years today and we here at Coast Guard Activities New York still sting from the pain; we lost three of our own that day, too. The altered skyline of this city is an all too painful daily reminder of what we’ve lost – no more poignant memorial can be conceived. God bless you and your family. (LCDR Paul D. J. Arnett, USCG – “Dewey”)
Paul Arnett
September 11, 2003
Mr. Y reminds me of my daddy... John T. Watson, Jr. who was also a military pilot (WWII). I guess pilots named John were intelligent, wonderful, and well loved people. It is with misty eyes that I let you know my heart as well as God's Spirit are with you today. I cannot imagine your pain, but send you blessings. America and I remember that your loved one was sacrificed for our freedom - as was Jesus sacrificed for our eternal freedom. God bless you this day. Rebekah
Rebekah L
September 10, 2003
September 12, 2002
I never knew you could love someone you've never met. I now know it is so. Thank you for your life, the world was a better place with you in it. You remind me of my grandpa-I wish I could've heard your stories. Love, Aimee
Aimee Gintz
September 11, 2002
I never met John, but from what I heard about him from his daughter Jennifer, I know he is missed greatly but will never be lost.
Mary Morrow
September 11, 2002
Dear Family Members and Friends of Mr. Yamnicky,

I am a freshman at a Catholic High School called DSHA in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Today we had a prayer service to remember those lost on September 11th. We each recieved a name of a victim and were encouraged to visit a site and write to the family.

To tell you the truth, I was getting sick of hearing about the 11th and just wanted people to get back to their normal lives. I didn't really affect me too personally.

Recieving Mr. Yamnicky's name today has changed this all. Having this name makes me feel like I can really do something, really help somebody. I am truly sorry for your loss. I want you to know that my prayers are with you always.

I have a ribbon I recieved to remind me of Mr. Yamnicky and I have put it in a place where it can remeind me everyday of all the victims. I didn't know Mr. Yamnicky but I am very proud to have his name because he sounds like he was a great perosn who has a great friends and a great family.
Emily Schultz
September 11, 2002
To the Yamnicky Family,
We're all thinking about you today, and thinking about Mr. Yamnicky. What a wonderful man, and what a zest for life!
The Bensons
Sue Benson
September 10, 2002

You are my hero! From the day I met you, October 1, 1979, until this very day, I am proud to say that I knew you. Your wonderful smile and wit was most welcome. Jan, we loved John and through him, we love you too. Your generosity is overwhelming. John lives on in everyone he touched! God Bless the Yamnicky family and God Bless the USA.
Susan Lyles
September 6, 2002
To the Yamnicky Family you will always be in your hearts. John was a great man and it was pleasure to have known him. I will always remember the happiness he displayed
whenever he came to visit mark in
kandra longo
September 2, 2002
I am so sorry to know that Capt.Yamnicky was among those lost.
Jan,if you see this, please e-mail me. I worked with Mrs. Yamnicky in Clinton, Maryland back in the 70's.
Anne Maddox
May 31, 2002
On May 29th 2002, 1 mile was walked to honor the life of John and all the family, friends and loved ones left behind. may you find some comfort in knoiwng you do not grieve alone.

John, you may be gone but will never be forgotten, may you rest in peace.
Kathy Swaringen
May 27, 2002
May 27, 2002
April 18, 2002
Rest in peace and may God Bless you and the ones that you left behind.
Angie Campbell
February 14, 2002
My deepest sympathies to the Yamnicky family. How amazing that John was able to walk away from 5 crash landings. I am so sorry that he and all the rest were unable to walk from this one. But God does promise that there will be a time when death and terrible tragedies will be a thing of the past. Please take comfort from the scriptures at Revelation 21:1-5.

From a person that cares.
Donna Ludy
January 12, 2002
I absolutely love going to air show to watch the military planes fly and to read the John helped design the F/A 18 really touches my heart. We thank John for his times in the Navy where he helped protect our country. Such a dedication for others comes with a brave, warm and caring heart. May John's life and love continue living in all who love him. May the sorrow in your hearts be lightened by warm memories of times shared with John. Our hearts cry with you in your loss of John.
America Cries
We see your sorrow-
and our hearts cry....
We can not erase your pain
but you do not have to face the anguish alone-for we-
-the American people-
are beside you.
We so desperately want to have the touch that brings you comfort,
the strength that gives you courage,
and the words to lighten your spirits.
And when we are left speechless
may the silence of our nation weave love into your hearts
to ease your sorrow.
May you find healing through our nation's strength as we-
-the American people-
face this difficult time together. Our hearts are with you. Teresa Jahn
Dixon, IL
Teresa Jahn
January 3, 2002
I'm 5 years old and wear a bracelet for John Yamnicky. My grandmother is helping with Bracelets for America to raise money for families. I ask her if I could buy a bracelet, but she bought it for me. Mr. John Yamnicky is in my prayers every night and on Sunday. I wish I had met him.
Love, Caty Byrd
January 1, 2002
Big John was my C.O. in VA-172, flying A-4's. He was a warrior; he was also a wrrm and witty leader and everyone loved him. God rest his soul. Norm
Norman Justesen
December 28, 2001
Though I did not know John personally, I think about him and his family everyday since I wear a mercy band with his name on it. My prayers go out to all of the family memebers. You will always be on my prayer list forever.
Jo Ann Ruf
November 3, 2001
My prayers go out to your family.McKeesport will always remember you.
Pat (Palm) Harris
October 31, 2001
My sympathy goes out to your family. McKeesport will never forget you John.
Christine Hartman Hamilton (class of 49)
October 1, 2001
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