The world is a better place because George was a part of it. We can all take inspiration from his life by his example of putting others first and doing good before himself. For him, family was always first. Bette was the love of his life every day and still is. We could not ask for a better father for Linda, Ray, Mark, Sandra, and Mike. He made sure we were well prepared for life and would do anything for them. We could not ask for a better family life growing up.
In addition to the sacrifices he made for his family, he spent 30 years providing selfless service to the Air Force. The Air Force and country are better for it. He had high pressure jobs such as working for the Strategic Air Command (SAC) and critical jobs at the Pentagon. Long hours and lots of travel were a way of life. He dedicated his life to supporting the country he loved. Every day, for 30 years, he gave it his all. Few people will ever have the courage, gumption or discipline to accomplish what he did. His sacrifice was great.
He continued his trait of service by generously supporting the community and country apart from work. From animal shelters, school kids, and the Heritage Foundation, he supported the best he could with time and money. He worked many hours for the church and helping others in the congregation. He supported both the Boy and Girl Scouts. As an Eagle Scout himself, he inducted his grandson Adam into the Eagle Scouts with a beautiful ceremony. He helped build a Little League baseball field in Norway for the Americans stationed there. He coached a summer league basketball team for high school kids. He attended his kids many sporting events. He attended his kids school events. With five kids that's a lot of events!
As his family grew, so did his love and caring. Ray married Kathy, Mark married Amy. Sandra married Ed and had Kelsey and Josh. Kelsey married Matt and had Jonny and Elizabeth. Mike married Chris and had Adam and Alex. Adam married Dan and Alex married Kalli. George was interested in everyone's life and never shied away from providing advice. He loved having family around and loved to hear from everyone. His family included all the dogs over the years with his favorite being Scooter. He knew Scooter was the best and smartest dog ever.
His biggest and most passionate hobby was The Crimson Tide. The word hobby really does not do it justice. In college, he played trumpet for the famous Million Dollar Band. He got to travel and play at the major bowl games and was seen on TV performing for the half time shows. In the Fall it was football season. Every Saturday was Bama football. Several times he was able to travel back to the school he graduated from and loved and see games in person. Winning was great and they won most of the time. But the few times they lost; it was best to take cover. We gave George a big "Roll Tide forever" from all of us.
What a life! Besides the wonderful accomplishments listed above, he traveled the world and country. He lived in and experienced different cultures. Once he was invited to the White House and met President Nixon and many other distinguished Government officials. Besides the Air Force, he worked at a bank, taught high school, and managed the Air Force Village. He helped his five kids through college. He overcame having most of his belongings destroyed in a fire. He was a fighter and faced challenges head on. He had strong moral courage, great faith, and an enduring spirit. He touched so many lives in a positive way.
God bless George and the inspirational life he lived. He did so much for so many right up to the end. He is a role model for this generation. He showed what could be done through hard work, dedication, and the right moral compass. Every day he went out into the world and did good things. We will truly miss him but are so blessed to have had him in our lives. He will always have our gratitude and love. If we all lived up to his example, the world would be so much better.