Richard E. Banning
Richard E. Banning was born February 12, 1921, in Rock Rapids, Iowa, the eldest of three sons of Robert and Flora Banning. Richard died April 27, 2002, in San Marcos, Texas.
Richard graduated high school in the class of 1938 and then attended Britt Junior College, Britt, Iowa from 1938-1940. He was part of the 6-man football team, which won the state of Iowa Junior College Championship in 1939.
From college he enlisted in the Army Air Corps (later to be the United States Air Force) July 10, 1940 as a Private. His career spanned 30 years, one month and 21 days; the last nine years as a Bird Colonel (officer grade 6); retiring on September 30, 1970. He graduated from the aviation cadet flying school on February 20, 1942, as a 2nd Lt. and joined the 97th Bombardment Group in January 1943. He flew 50 missions in B-17’s over North Africa, Sicily, Sardina and Italy; returning to the United States in August 1943.
Various tours of duty included 8 1/2 years served overseas. Most noteworthy were: seven months in North Africa, 1943; 36 months in Bermunda, 1947-1950; 26 months in Okinawa, 1955-1957; and 33 months at Fountainbleau, Fance NATO headquarters, 1964-1967. His positions while in the Air Force included bomber pilot, flying weather missions in Bermunda, and Base Supply Commander.
While stationed in the United States he attended Indiana University, 1958-1959, and graduated on the Dean’s List with a B.S. in Business Management.
Richard and his wife, Doris, resided in Gahanna, Ohio from 1967-1993. From 1972-1982, he worked for the State of Ohio as an auditor in the State Welfare Department.
After the death of his beloved Doris, he retired to Austin, Texas to enjoy and participate in the life of his granddaughter, Elinor, from child to young adult. Elinor is an excellent student and musician; one of her talents being that of the French Horn which Richard also played as a youth. He was an avid attendee of activities featuring the San Marcos Rattler Band, of which Elinor has been a member throughout her high school career. He also enjoyed traveling throughout the States to visit with family and friends.
He is survived by two daughters: Linda Jenkins of Yuma, Arizona and Kay Banning and her husband, Roland Denney of San Marcos, Texas; his granddaughter Elinor Denney; brother Robert Banning of Belmond, Iowa and close friend, Jean Isted.
He is preceded in death by his wife of 51 years, Doris; daughters Mary Ann Wheeler and Edith Anderson; his brother G. Ed Banning; and second wife Joanna Giesecke.