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Joseph Otto "Q-Check" Kawulok Jr.

1951 - 2010 Obituary Condolences
Joseph Otto "Q-Check" Kawulok Jr. Obituary
Joseph Otto "Q-Check" Kawulok, Jr.

Joseph Otto "Q-Check" Kawulok, Jr., age 58, died unexpectedly Wednesday, June 16, 2010 of complication from a stroke at Mountain View Hospital in Las Cruces. Joe leaves behind his beloved wife of 22 years, Jo Ann Kawulok; daughter, Patricia Ann Gallagher of Corpus Christie, TX; a sister, Celeste (Kawulok) and her husband Perry Middlemist of Duluth, MN; and will be missed by many nieces and nephews.

Joe was employed by NewTec, Inc. at White Sands Missile Range as a Frequency Engineer. He was previously employed by WESTEC as an F-117 (Stealth) Mission Planner. Prior to that, he was employed by NLX Corporation as an academics and simulator instructor in the F-4 program where he taught German pilots and Weapons Systems Officers at Holloman AFB. His love of aeronautics, computers and the military was surpassed only by the love of his family.

Joe was preceded in death by his sister, Marion Kawulok and her husband Edward Shawlinski; his father, Joseph, Sr. and mother, Marian Kawulok, all of Tucson, AZ. Cremation has taken place. Joe will be interred in the family plot in Tucson in a private ceremony. At Joe's request, no memorial is scheduled.

Joe was known for his inability to forget even the most trivial matter, his quick wit and his quirky sense of humor. He laughed, he loved, he lived! His patriotism, his continued support of the military and his computer expertise merged into a career field that brought him both success and joy.

Joe's distinguished career began upon his graduation from the University of Arizona in 1975, with a BA in Political Science. He entered the USAF and began training as a navigator and graduated from Undergraduate Navigator Training program in 1975. In 1977, he completed the Electronic Welfare Officer (EWO) Training program and later became an Instructor EWO. From 1977 until 1992, when he left the military, he had graduated from the F-4 Replacement Training Unit course, the AGM-64 (Pave Spike) course, the F-4G "Wild Weasel" school where, because of his extremely high intellect, he acquired the nickname "Weasel Joe", the ATC Instructor Training Course, the AN/ALQ-T5 Simulator Modification & Programming Course, the ATC Instructional Systems Development Course, and finally the ATC Supervisors Course.

Although Joe is physically gone from us, he lives within the hearts of all those whom he has touched; he will never be forgotten.

The following poem, dedicated to those who fly close air support for ground forces-REALLY close air, the following is from the prospective of flying 50 feet AGL at 400 KIAS (knots indicated airspeed) hung above Joe's desk.


Oh, I've slipped the swirling clouds of dust
A few feet from the dirt.
I have flown my plane low enough
To make my bottom hurt.
I've raced over desert, hills, through valleys,
And mountain passes too.
Frolicked in the trees
Where only gray squirrels flew.

Chasing cows along the way,
Disturbing ram and ewe.
I've done a hundred other things
You damned well shouldn't do.
I have smacked the tiny sparrow,
Bluebird, robin, and the rest.
Dragged vortices through branches
Throwing eggs out of their nests.

I've hurled through total darkness
Just as blind as I could be,
And spent the night in terror
Of things I could not see.
I've turned my eyes to heaven
Sweating bullets through the flight,
Reached out my hand and pressed-to-test
--the Master Caution light.
Published in Alamogordo Daily News from June 30 to July 30, 2010
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