SAN ANTONIO – Samuel Ginnis Schwab, lieutenant colonel, U.S. Air Force, retired, passed away Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012, in San Antonio, at the age of 90.
He was born Dec. 15, 1921, in Rock Falls. After attending Cornell College for 2 years, Sam joined the Air Force in 1943. He married his high school sweetheart, Doris, in Pecos, Texas, during pilot training. Sam was sent to Germany, where he flew 35 missions as a B-17 bomber pilot in World War II from October 1944 through March 1945. When he returned from the war, he attended the University of Illinois, graduating in 1947, with a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering.
Though offered many jobs with such companies as 3M and DuPont, his love of flying lured him back to the Air Force, where he enjoyed a career of 30 years as a pilot and a meteorologist. He retired in May 1970, toured the country for a year and finally settled in San Diego. Sam became a certified engineer for the state of California, and worked for Caltrans for 7 years. He retired from his second career in March 1987.
Sam was a member of the Quiet Birdmen, and served as the San Diego chapter keyman for 3 years. He became an avid jogger at age 45, and ran 3 to 5 miles daily until he was 82. Thereafter, he walked more than a mile each day until he fell ill with pulmonary fibrosis, which ultimately caused his death. Sam was a true patriot, and loved his family and his country.
He is survived by his daughter, Janice Schwab of San Antonio; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Hester Schwab; three brothers; one sister; his wife of 30 years, Doris (Funderburgh) Schwab, in 1983; and good friend, Yvonne Eddleman.
A graveside service with full military honors was Oct. 4 at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio. Porter Loring Mortuaries in San Antonio handled arrangements.