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12/31/2016

Thompson, Paul

I remember Gator football, great teammates and coaches Chuckran and Sabol.  Have fond memories of my FIJI frat brothers and all the dumb stuff we did.  Remember Woodcock Creek keggers and fishing.  Remember my Dad taking me into George’s for our first beer together and the marvelous hot beef au jus sandwiches at Rudy’s Blue Star.  Also there are hazy memories of Senior Week—what a sweet send-off after four years as a Gator.

Education after Allegheny

1978 I finished a Master of Business Administration degree at Eastern Washington U. and was inducted into Beta Gamma Sigma honorary business society.  In 1981-82 the Air Force sent me to a year of military education at Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL.  In 1987-88 I had a year of senior military education at the Naval War College in Newport, RI.  In 1990 I received a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College.

Marriage

August 1967, my first Air Force assignment was Grand Forks AFB, ND and I met my future bride.  August 1968 I married the lovely and talented Sharie Gae Buckman, a coed at U. of North Dakota.   We celebrated our 48th wedding anniversary this year.

Our daughter Jennifer was born in 1971 at Malmstrom AFB, Great Falls, MT.  Jennifer is now in Colorado Springs as assistant director of sales for the largest home builder in the city.

Where We’ve lived/what We’ve done

We moved 20 plus times in 30 great years in the Air Force.  August 1967 I was on active duty at Grand Forks, ND providing logistics support to an F-101 squadron. Ted Kafka ’67 flew in a T-37 for a visit.   While on temporary duty to Lowry AFB, Denver, Don Jackson ’67 was also there and we skied all over Colorado.

1970 we were in Great Falls, MT providing supply support to fighter squadrons and radar stations.  In 1972 it was off to Da Nang AB, Viet Nam where I dodged Viet Cong rockets and got to see Gator roommate Bob Simica ’67. Also visited Bob’s A1-E squadron at NKP, Thailand.

1973 I was assigned to Fairchild AFB, Spokane, WA.  1977 I cross trained from supply to aircraft maintenance at Chanute AFB, IL.  In 1978 I was sent to Myrtle Beach AFB, SC an A-10 unit where I supervised sortie generation and aircraft maintenance.

1982-84 I commanded an A-10 maintenance squadron at RAF Bentwaters, UK and 1985-87 I performed senior maintenance officer duties at Ramstein and Zweibruken, Germany.  After a year, 1987-88, with the Navy at Newport, RI I was assigned to the Pentagon, Washington DC.  There I fought the battle of the budget to support and defend the USAF logistics dollars from 1988 to 1992.

1992 to 1997 my final assignment was directing operation of a USAF industrial facility at McClellan AFB, CA repairing all the USAF flight instruments, hydraulic components and generators and supplying USAF with communications/electronics/space spare parts.

After the USAF I was hired by Battelle Memorial Institute and sent to Colorado Springs, CO to start military space business development.  Next I worked with the United Space Alliance (USA), that ran the space shuttle programs for NASA.   Finally, I was a consultant to USA at Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, FL.

1998 I was invited to join the U of Colorado Colorado Springs(UCCS) Science Advisory Board advising the Dean of Letters, Arts and Sciences and remained on the board till  2010.

Retirement

I retired in 2003 after the Columbia space shuttle disaster.  Cape Canaveral had more important things to worry about than re-engineering business processes.

I volunteered with the Service Core of Retired Executives (SCORE).  SCORE is a national organization affiliated with the Small Business Administration. It provides free mentoring to small business startups.  For 13 years I have helped people write their business plans.  It is a rewarding way to give a little back to the community.

Current activities and/ hobbies

I started shooting competitive skeet tournaments in 2005.  I trained 5 days a week and fired 20,000 shotgun rounds yearly in practice.  I also had a skeet training simulator in the basement.  I was named to All American Teams seven times by the National Skeet Shooting Association.  2009 at the World Skeet Championships, I finished 5th in 12 gauge.  In 2013 I was inducted into the Colorado Skeet Hall of Fame. Skeet filled my need to compete but pissed off my cardiologist.

So I switched to fly fishing, an elegant, and relaxing past time that can trace its origins to 15th century England.  Now I fly fish about 100 days a year and release all trout to fight another day.

I’ve fly fished in Mexico, Belize, Chile, Argentina, Alaska and most of the western USA.   Enjoy taking youngsters, oldsters, and new anglers to introduce the joys of fly fishing.  Trout don’t live in ugly places.

My contact info

Address:  5720 Regal View Road Colorado Springs, CO 80919
Phone: 729 548 8599
Email:

Freshman Book

Graduation

USAF Retirement

Paul & Sharie 2016

Trout caught in Argentina Nov-2016

2 Comments on “Thompson, Paul

Don Jackson
05/19/2017 at 1:44 pm

Ape, I still remember you making a wrong turn at Vail and ending up going down the advanced slope. I found you halfway down the slope covered in snow with you shoulder out of joint. You poped it back in, laughed and headed of down the slope. Also remember going to “You Father’s Mustache” in Denver on “Pink Champagne and Peanuts” night (Believe we were celebrating your birthday). Marilyn was out visiting and Sandy Bream was also there. I got pulled over by the cops, driving your car because you were too drunk to drive, and you poped open the back door and puked on the cops leg. A wonderful scene for all to cherish. They gave me a ticket for going the wrong way on a one-way-street and let us go. Later that night, Marilyn and I drove you back to your apartment, carried you up to you room and you wanted to kiss Marilyn goodnight as you were leaving the next day for Grand Forks. You had puke stuck all over your face and I made Marilyn give you the kiss. She has NEVER FORGIVEN ME for makling her do that. We both look forward to seeing you two in June.

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Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
05/20/2017 at 10:56 pm

Dear Don, those memories are the reason my wife does not come to reunions. We had a wonderful time in Denver and you taught me how to ski. Remember the trip to Aspen to watch the professionals, Jon Claude Killy and Penny Pettiou. This reunion may have to be an “apology tour” starting with Marilyn. Look forward to seeing you. Cheers Paul

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