AUGUSTA, MAINE - Terrence L. Dillon, Colonel, USAF (Retired) of Augusta, Maine, passed away on Feb., 16, 2018, at Maine General Medical Center in Augusta.
Terrence (Terry) was born in Youngstown, on May 20, 1941, to his late parents, Dorothy Mae and Robert Lyle Dillon. He was raised in his hometown of Girard.
As a teenager he worked in his family’s bakery, often arriving at school smelling of doughnuts after delivering them to stores around town. Upon graduation from high school in 1959, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, completed boot camp, and earned a Congressional appointment to enter the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo., in June of 1960. He graduated from the Academy in June 1964, was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force, and selected to attend pilot training at Moody AFB in Valdosta, Ga.
Terry served his country with distinction throughout his 26-year military career. His accomplishments included: an initial tour flying B-52 bombers; combat in Vietnam as an OV-10 pilot; attainment of a master’s degree in mathematics from Texas A&M University; assignment to the faculty of the U.S. Air Force Academy as a mathematics instructor and instructor pilot in the cadet aviation program; multiple assignments in KC-135 air-refueling tankers including a year as commander of the 42nd Air Refueling Squadron at Loring AFB, Maine; four years at Strategic Air Command Headquarters in Omaha, Neb., where his work led to the modernization of the entire fleet of air-refueling aircraft; and three years at Air Force Headquarters at the the Pentagon in Washington D.C., where he focused on nuclear disarmament treaty negotiations between the U.S. and Russia. He concluded his military service at the Pentagon in December of 1986, was awarded the Legion of Merit for an “exceptionally meritorious” career, and retired in the rank of Colonel. As a Vietnam veteran, he flew 390 combat missions during 1969 to 1970, while attached to the U.S. Army’s 1st Infantry Division at Dau Tieng and Lai Khe, South Vietnam.
Following military retirement, Terry worked as an aviation analyst for the Boeing Aircraft Company for seven years, owned and operated a UPS/FedEx shipping franchise in Virginia for three years, moved to Colorado in 1996, where he worked as a landscape construction supervisor, then moved to Maine in 2003, where he was employed in hardware and paint sales until full retirement in 2010.
Terry leaves behind his lovely wife, Jennifer of Augusta (originally from Brecon, Wales), and two terrific sons, Corey of Thornton, Colo., and Gregory of Missoula, Mont.. He is also survived by four great sisters, Kathleen Brockman of Seattle, Maureen Sirbu of Kissimmee, Fla., and Colleen George and Laureen Kinast of Girard; and three wonderful grandchildren, Madison Dillon of New York City, and Liana and Phoebe Dillon of Missoula, Mont. He was saddened to have just outlived a fourth grandchild, Rivena Dillon, of Denver, Colo. He regarded each of them as a special blessing in his life, and each held a special place in his heart.
Memorial services will be held on Monday, August 6th, 11:00 AM, at Girard City Cemetery Chapel, with military honors to follow.