Lt. General O’Connor recently passed away. In 1962-3….it was Col. O’Connor at Ballistic Systems Division, Norton AFB, CA
“During World War II, O’Connor served in the European Theater of Operation as a pilot in Italy with the 459th Bombardment Group, Fifteenth Air Force. In March 1962, O’Connor was assigned to the Air Force Systems Command and went to Norton Air Force Base, California as deputy director of the Ballistic Systems Division. Lt. Gen O’Connor was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, in 1969 for his contributions to the Apollo 11 lunar landing.”
My boss (Lt. Col. Frank Smith) at the time and Col. O’Connor were good friends….so as a young Lt. I was invited over to Col. Smiths several times and got to know Col. O’Connor on a more personal level (as well as could be for a very junior officer). One of the few photos from my time at BSD….getting promoted to 1st Lt. and Col. O’Connor pinning the bars on.
Not only was Col. O’Connor an outstanding leader….he was also a part of The Great Generation as a B-24 Pilot in WW ll.