John W. Hatcher of Hastings, Neb., passed away on July 17.
John W. Hatcher of Hastings, Neb., passed away on July 17. He formerly lived in Leavenworth and Leawood, Kan. He was born in Beckley, W.Va., on July 28, 1929 to John H. and Violet Walker Hatcher. He grew up in Charleston, W.Va. After high school graduation, he was accepted into the Holloway Plan which included attending the University of Virginia and flight training as a Midshipman in Pensacola, Fla. He transferred to the Marine Corps upon completion and was sent to Korea as a fighter pilot in 1952. He flew 85 combat missions in Corsairs and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, 4 Air Medals and other UN and Korean medals. In 1955, he joined Trans World Airline. He retired in 1989 as Captain after 34 years having flown the 'Connies', DC-9, Boeing 727, Lockheed 1011 and Boeing 747 on both domestic and international routes. He also served in the Marine Corp Reserves until 1970, retiring as Colonel, USMCR. John was a charter member of the Airline History Museum, life member of the Naval Aviation Museum, Leavenworth Lions Club and Marine Corps Museum.
John married Sally Dorr on June 27, 1959 in San Mateo, Calif. She survives along with their children, John W. Hatcher, Jr., Austin, Texas; Susan Hatcher Overmiller, Hastings; and Sharon Hatcher Tilley, Larkspur, Calif.; and their spouses, Leslie Hatcher, Tim Overmiller and Christopher Tilley. There are 9 grandchildren to cherish his memory: Taylor, Matthew, Blake and Nathan Overmiller; Jeffrey, Steven and Laura Hatcher; and Andrew and Ian Tilley. John is survived by his sister, Carolyn Hatcher McColloch of Austin, Texas, and her husband, Sam, as well as many nephews and nieces in Texas, Mich., Ga. and Iowa.
A service will take place on Saturday, July 20 at 1 p.m. at the Livingston, Butler, Volland Funeral Home, Hastings. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the LCHS Foundation for the Future (Leavenworth County Historical Society), 1128 5th Ave., Leavenworth, KS 66048, or the Airline History Museum in Kansas City, Mo.