George T. “Tim” Jones, a U.S. Air Force veteran, is the grand marshal for the Apache Junction Veterans Day Parade to be held Friday, Nov. 11.
Following a 9:15 a.m. opening ceremony, the parade begins at 9:30 a.m. at Phelps Drive and heads west on Apache Trail, turning south on Gold Drive, then turning east onto Apache Trail and returning to the starting location of the parade. A military plane fly over is sponsored by American Legion Post 27.
Support for the Apache Junction Veterans Day Parade is provided by the City of Apache Junction, Apache Junction/Gold Canyon Independent and The Pass Time Paper.
Jones was born and raised in northwest Pennsylvania. He attended school in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, until he turned 16 and decided to drop out of school and spent the next year doing various jobs around town, according to a release.
In 1963, having turned 17, he fulfilled his dream and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. After basic training he was transferred to Dover Air Force Base in Dover, Delaware. His next year was spent learning his trade and serving as a crew member aboard different planes. During his tour in Dover he met a young lady named Cheryl and after a short courtship he asked her father for her hand and they were married in 1964 shortly after, the release states.
The year 1965 changed many things for the newlyweds. President Johnson expanded America’s presence in Vietnam and he volunteered for duty there. Soon after his request, he was transferred to main supply base at Tachikawa Air Base, home of the 815th supply Wing. He served as crew chief on a C-130, supplying troops in Vietnam until 1967. His tour was cut short due to a medical emergency and he was medevacked to Dover Air Force Base and discharged shortly after.
Since leaving the service Jones has served in various jobs and ministries around the world, along with his wife, three sons and a daughter. In 2001 he and his family founded The Church at the Mount at Goldfield Ghost Town.
Jones lives in Apache Junction and is retired. He has served with the search and rescue Falcon Command 305, now called USAF Total Forces, as a major. He is also an on-call chaplain for the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office.