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LTGN PETER KEMPF

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LTGN PETER KEMPF U.S. Air Force, Retired Lieutenant General (retired) Peter T. Kempf passed away June 15, 2012, after a six-year battle with melanoma. General Kempf was born July 9, 1936, in Elizabeth, N.J., to Evelyn and Hank Kempf, and was raised in New Jersey and California. He graduated from Whittier High School and attended two years at Whittier College, where he played football under Coach George Allen. In 1958, he entered the U.S. Air Force through the Aviation Cadet program, starting out as a navigator in C-130s. He subsequently attended pilot training at Williams Air Force Base, Arizona, and graduated as the number one student in his class. He earned his bachelor's degree in geology from the University of Nebraska in 1964. His career in the U.S. Air Force spanned 33 years and he had more than 6,000 flying hours in C-130s, VC-135s, O-1s, F-4s, F-111s, F-15s, F-16s, and A-10s. While he flew a wide variety of aircraft he was a fighter pilot to the core and was a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Fighter Weapons School at Nellis AFB. He was once asked what his favorite airplane was. His response was, "The F-15, F-16 and A-10 were a lot of fun to fly, but I carried a whole lot of lead back from North Vietnam in F-4s and they never let me down." He eventually returned to Nellis as the Tactical Fighter Weapons Center Commander from 1985 until 1988. His career culminated in his assignment as the Commander of 12th Air Force, where he was the architect and director of the air war for Operation Just Cause, the US invasion of Panama, in December 1989. In 1990, he retired on an athletic scholarship to Henderson, where he was very active riding his bike, skiing and playing competitive racquetball at the national level. He is survived by his wife, of 54 years, Louise; his daughter, Laura; his son, Steven; his daughter-in-law, Marshon; and his granddaughters, Taylor and Rachel. The family is extremely grateful to the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, for all of their care and expertise during his long battle with melanoma, and he gave them great credit for surviving as long as he did. No memorial service will be held. His remains will be cremated and spread by his family in a private ceremony. Donations can be made in his name to either the MD Anderson Cancer Center or the Wounded Warrior Project. The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center https://www.mdanderson.org/gifts The Wounded Warrior Project https://support.woundedwarriorproject.org

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