Retired Lieutenant Colonel Jackie Lee Anderson was born in Casey, Illinois, November 24, 1934. He attended Casey High School where he excelled in both music and football. Following two years at Eastern Illinois University, Anderson enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1955 and was assigned to Chanute Air Force Base, Illinois for operational training. He married Sandra Williams, also of Casey, Illinois. Following this training, the young couple’s first overseas assignment was to Wheelus Air Base, Tripoli, Libya where he served as a Ground Weather Equipment Operator and Weather Forecaster Technician. They had three children together; Patricia, David, and Daniel.
After promotion to the rank of Staff Sergeant, Anderson was selected for Officer Candidate School. He initially served as a Supply Officer prior to his selection for Navigator Training at James Connally Air Force Base, Texas where he was named Distinguished Graduate. He was later selected as Instructor Navigator at Mather Air Force Base, California. He earned a Masters Degree in Information Science in 1969 from The Georgia Institute of Technology. From 1970 – 1971, he was assigned to Clark Air Base in the Philippines. Anderson subsequently flew hundreds of tactical combat support hours in Vietnam in the C-130 aircraft.
He was assigned to the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado in 1971. He served four years as a computer science instructor and was invited for a sequential tour as Director for Curriculum and Scheduling for over 4,000 Academy Cadets. He earned many awards throughout his Air Force career; The Distinguished Flying Cross, the Meritorious Service Medal with one bronze oak leaf cluster, the Air Medal with four bronze oak leaf clusters, the Air Force Commendation Medal, a Small Arms Expert Marksmanship citation and numerous other Air Force and Vietnam commendations.
He retired from the Air Force in 1981. He then worked as a defense and commercial contractor for nearly 20 years including McDonnell Douglas Electronics Systems Company and MCI Communications Corporation.
His greatest passion was singing. He won the Illinois state high school championship for vocal performance (Old Man River). He continued music pursuit as a choir member and soloist at Protestant churches in both Peoria, Arizona and at the US Air Force Academy’s Community Chapel.
Splitting seasons between Arizona and Colorado, Jack was an avid golfer and scored a hole in one in each state. He served as both Vice President and President of USAFA’s Eisenhower Men’s Golf Association from 2011 to 2012, respectively.
He is survived by his wife, Sandy; his daughter, Patty and son-in-law Don Moore of Colorado Springs; son David and daughter-in-law Linda also of Colorado Springs, his son Daniel, and his brother-in-law Jim Winnett of Casey, Illinois.
His pride in life were his grandsons Dustin, Brandon, Michael, his granddaughter Kayla, and his great grandson, Taylor.
Jack is preceded in death by his father T.R.; his mother Minnie; and his sister Sandra.
Memorial Service 10:00AM, Friday, October 15, 2021 USAFA Community Chapel, 5134 Cathedral Dr., USAF Academy, Colorado, 80840. Current Department of Defense policy requires masks be worn inside all government buildings.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Lt Col Jackie Lee Anderson, USAF, (Ret.), please visit our floral store.