Retired U.S. Air Force Col. Russell A. Everts will serve as keynote speaker when the city of Litchfield Park honors America’s fallen on Memorial Day.
The 45-minute in-person ceremony will begin at 7 a.m. Monday, May 31, at the World War II memorial on the west side of Litchfield Elementary School, 255 E. Wigwam Blvd. Parking is available in the lot on the south side of the school.
Light refreshments will be served.
Mayor Thomas L. Schoaf will lead the ceremony, which will include a flag-raising by the Luke Air Force Base Honor Guard, patriotic music, placement of a floral tribute at the memorial, a prayer and moment of silence, and the playing of “Taps.”
A special presentation of the POW-MIA table ceremony will be held in honor of the brave men and women who were prisoners of war or went missing in action, providing a poignant reminder of the words attributed to Korean War veteran and purple heart recipient Howard William Osterkamp: “All gave some, some gave all.”
About Col. Everts
Col. Everts was born Dec. 2, 1943, in Hollywood, California.
After graduating Polytechnic High School in 1961, he attended the University of California, Los Angeles, graduating in 1966 with a bachelor of science in psychology.
He was commissioned in the U.S. Air Force in June 1966, and earned his pilot wings in December 1967.
Col. Evert amassed approximately 5,000 fighter flying hours in the F-4, F-5, F-15 and F-16, including 405 F-4 combat missions totaling 1,250 hours, during the Vietnam conflict.
During that time he met the former Barb Falconer, and they married on July 4, 1975.
Over the course of his career, Col. Everts was stationed throughout the Western United States, Germany and Asia, with one East Coast assignment in the Pentagon.
In those years, he led/commanded the 64th Aggressor Squadron, the USAF Fighter Weapons School, the 35th and 37th Fighter Wings and the Air Defense Sector for the Southwest portion of the U.S.
His awards/medals include:
After retiring from the Air Force in February 1995, Col. Everts worked in Taiwan for three years as a training adviser to the Republic of China Air Force.
On his return to the U.S., he served as site manager of a contract providing academic instruction and course ware development for the USAF Weapons School.
He then became the assistant program manager for the Nellis Air Force Base tactical gunnery range complex, working for Lockheed Martin Corp.
The company transferred him to Luke Air Force Base in 2004, where he served as Lockheed Martin’s deputy program manager and as an instructor for the F-16 academic and simulator training contract until his retirement in 2008.
The couple has lived in Litchfield Park since 2004 and are active in the community. Col. Everts is an avid golfer who can often be found playing a round on one of the courses at the Wigwam.
For more information about Litchfield Park’s Memorial Day ceremony, call 623-935-5033 or visit litchfield-park.org.