Lee R Pitzer

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Rank: Col

Entered Into Eternal Rest

Lee Pitzer Lee Pitzer, Colonel, USAF (retired), age 85, of OFallon, Ill., former Air Force officer and corporate financial executive, born August 31, 1933 in Rochester, N.Y., passed away Saturday, January 26, 2019, at his home in OFallon, Ill. Lee was 85 years old and had been blessed with a full and complete life. His growing up was nomadic but in 1946, the family settled down in Affton, Mo., where he graduated high school in 1951. He hitch-hiked to California at age 15 to see the world and again the following summer, to Phoenix, Ariz., where he joined the National Guard. Lee graduated from the University of Missouri in June 1955, then married his high school sweetheart Peggy (nee Leonard) on August 6, 1955, in Affton, Mo. He reported for Air Force navigator training at Ellington AFB, Tex. A year later, he was assigned to Okinawa Air Base as a transport aircraft navigator. Colonel Pitzer left the Air Force in 1958, and for the next 18 months, he worked for three large US corporations, IBM, Dun and Bradstreet, and Colgate Palmolive. In 1959, he chose to return to active duty in the Air Force, as there was a navigator shortage. He did so happily as he realized he enjoyed and missed military service. Lee was subsequently assigned to Charleston AFB, S.C. Lee and Peggy had by then been joined by sons Rahn, born on Okinawa in a Quonset hut, and Kurt, born while Lee was on a mission to Panama. In 1962, after being the navigator on Air Force missions all over the world, Lee went to the US Armys parachute training school at Ft. Benning, Ga., prior to his reassignment requiring parachute duty at McChord AFB, Wash. That summer daughter Pamela joined the Pitzers. Subsequent assignments were at Scott AFB, Ill., Vietnam, US Army Command and Staff School at Ft. Leavenworth, Kans., Travis AFB, Calif., Langley AFB, Va., Little Rock AFB, Ark., and Clark Air Base, Philippines. In those last three assignments, he was squadron commander. His last duty was again at Scott AFB as Assistant Deputy for Air Transportation, before retiring April 1982. During his military service, Colonel Pitzer was awarded various decorations, medals, badges, and campaign ribbons, including the Bronze Star, Air Medal, Vietnam service medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Armed Forces Presidential Unit Citation, and small arms expert marksmanship. In civilian life, after 2 years with First Bank in OFallon, Lee joined Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. in St. Louis as an investment broker and financial consultant. Fifteen years later, he retired as Assistant Vice President. In the following years, he played golf, Texas Hold em poker, and bridge. For many years, he raised thoroughbred race horses for sale and to race. Since 1979, the Pitzers have lived in east OFallon on five acres with a barn and several horses. He was a prolific writer of Letters To The Editor of this newspaper, the Belleville News-Democrat. His “letters ” were on diverse subjects, but mainly concerned military history and strat

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