Col. John E. Ford III
The California State San Bernardino University Air Force ROTC Col. John E. Ford Memorial Scholarship Fund
On Saturday, Sept 20, our chapter voted and unanimously approved the following motion:
The Redlands Chapter, SAR will set up a memorial scholarship fund in the name of Col. John E. Ford for the purpose of funding a $250 annual award to an outstanding ROTC cadet at Cal State San Bernardino who has committed to military service. We will increase our annual chapter dues by $5.00 in order to ensure that the award may be given in the early years without using the principal funds in the scholarship fund account.
In order to communicate this I will draft three letters:
1. To the membership of the Redlands Chapter SAR: The purpose is first let them know we are setting up this fund and provide our reasons for doing so. I will also ask for one-time donations and pledges to help get the fund kicked off (as discussed in our Sep 3 meeting). Will, could I do this in the newsletter--which would guarantee it reaches all of our members and would save extra postage.
2. To Charlie Gentis, President of the Riverside Chapter SAR: First, thank him for proposing the idea and to let him and the Riverside Chapter know we are setting the fund up. As he committed to asking the Riverside Chapter for donations I would like to invite him, and any other Riverside Chapter members to attend one of our upcoming chapter meetings (or vice versa--any preferences on that?) in order to present their chapter's contribution and to thank them personally.
3. To the broader area SAR & DAR community who knew John. The purpose is to let them know about the fund and that we would appreciate any donations they could make in John's name.
Items resolved and notes from Monday 10/13/2008 board meeting regarding the Col. John E. Ford Memorial Scholarship Fund
We covered a good bit of ground Monday night regarding John's memorial scholarship fund. The following items are resolved and agreed upon:
The specific organization is the Air Force ROTC program at California State San Bernardino University.
There is also an Army ROTC unit at CSSBU and that group is not the intended beneficiary.
Our goal is an annual award of $500 with a Silver ROTC medal and certificate. The Redlands chapter raised its dues by $5/year with the intent of covering a $250 minimum deposit into the scholarship fund account. Charlie Gentis will seek the Riverside chapter's board approval for the same. We will likely alternate providing the medal and certificate between the two chapters as part of each year's normal ROTC program expenses. If the Riverside chapter cannot commit to this level of funding then we will scale back to a $400 award with $200 coming from each chapter.
Will Langford has identified Downey S&L has having a no minimum balance CD that bears 4% interest and that is to date the best option for the account. The Redlands Chapter will set that up with the contributions we have recieved to date.
Once the Riverside chapter's board decides it's level of funding committment we will put the agreement in writing in the form of a jointly signed commitment to continue funding each year at that level. A number of other items will logically follow the Riverside chapter's committment:We will jointly contact Sherry Ford to let her know we have successfully cooperated and established the Col. John E. Ford Memorial Scholarship fund.
We will jointly contact the commander of the Air Force ROTC program at CSSBU with our intentions, which are: make the annual award in the spring to an outstanding cadet of the commander's choosing. In addition we are stipulating that this cadet has committed to active duty military service.I made the following notes about additional related items:
The award certificate will be based on a blank form (that initially inlcudes only the embossed seal and crest). This will permit us to customize the award to John's fund.The award will be signed by the Redlands and Riverside chapter presidents.In estimating the timeline for getting the award prepared for the spring 2009 recipient, we will work with the commander at CSSBU to set up our internal schedule.
In order to publicize the fund and jump start the fund's balance I made the following notes:
i. Send Don Moran, Secy. of the Sons of Librerty a note about what we’re doing and include a document that can be copied and distributed to their membership. We're hoping for personal contributions from C&C Guardsmen who knew John and potentially a contribution from the Sons of Liberty Chapter.
ii. Send/Call Lorainne Hughes, Regent of Arrowhead DAR chapter a similar note. John had attended several of their chapter's meetings.
iii. Email Anne Lampman note as well.
iv. Send a note, envelope, and pledge cards with the next newsletter.
v. Send note and pledge cards with dues notification in mid-November.
Last, from what I've read of the SAR, as an organization and it's goals, this is exactly the sort of thing we should be championing. We can all feel good about this in that we are doing something above and beyond the expected. All the more fitting that it is in John's name.
Article Launched: 08/18/2008 12:29:19 PM PDT
Retired U.S. Air Force Col. John E. Ford III, a 22-year resident of Redlands, died Aug. 13 at his home in Redlands after a seven-year fight with bladder cancer. He was 70.
He retired 16 years ago as vice commander for Headquarters Air Combat Camera Service at Norton Air Force Base after a decorated Air Force career spanning 37½ years.
Ford was born Dec. 12, 1937, in Englewood, N.J. He earned his bachelor's degree in cinematography from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1959 and his master's degree in education from Southern Illinois University in 1974.
He was a distinguished graduate of Squadron Officers' School (1970) and a graduate of Air Command and Staff College (1974), National Security Management Course, National Defense University (1982) and the Air War College (1984).
His many Air Force assignments took him to Orlando Air Force Base in Florida, Clark Air Base in the Philippines and the Republic of Vietnam where he was the first combat camera officer in Vietnam in December 1961.
He went back to Vietnam in 1967 after having been in the Air Force Reserve for 4½ years. He stayed in the combat theater for 2½ years. For the majority of the time he was a commander of a combat camera detachment.
He was also assigned to Langley Air Force Base, Va., and Scott Air Force Base, Ill., where he was a war plans officer writing the plan that brought home U.S. prisoners of war.
He was then assigned to the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, Norton Air Force Base in San Bernardino and Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, the Pentagon again, and finally Norton Air Force Base. While here, he was deployed to Desert Storm and served on Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf's operations staff and was commander of all combat camera forces in Desert Storm.
Ford retired Sept. 1, 1992, with 28 years eight months active duty and eight years 10 months reserve service, for a total of 37½ years. He had 124 combat missions and 329.5 combat hours in Southeast Asia and the Persian Gulf region.
His military decorations include the Legion of Merit with one oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Air Medal with five oak leaf clusters, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters and the Republic of Vietnam Medal of Honor, First Class.
Following his retirement from the Air Force, he taught eight years in the Junior ROTC (Reserve Officers' Training Corps) program at Hemet High School where he mentored several young men and women who went on to serve in Iraq.
He was active as a discussion leader for Bible Study Fellowship for eight years, and was an active 20-year member of Trinity Evangelical Free Church of Redlands.
He served as president of the Redlands Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution and often marched in ceremonies with the commander in chief's guard dressed in Revolutionary War uniform.
He was a past chairman of the board of the Memorial Honor Detail of Riverside National Cemetery, was a former member of Kiwanis Club of Redlands and the Redlands Chamber of Commerce and was active with PTA.
Survivors include his wife, Sherry L. Ford, and a daughter, Shonna L. Ford, both of Redlands.
Services will be 8:45 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 20, at Riverside National Cemetery, 22495 Van Buren Blvd., Riverside, meeting at staging area 1.
Memorial donations may be made to Officers' Christian Fellowship, 3784 South Inca, Englewood, CO 80110-3405 (directed to account 9310).