David James Vogl, born in Battle Creek, Michigan on January 23, 1942, passed away at home on Wednesday December 11, 2019 in Santa Rosa, California at 77 years old, surrounded by family. He bravely fought T-cell lymphoma for 5 years before succumbing to the cancer most likely from Agent Orange in Vietnam.
David graduated from Cal State College LA in Criminal Justice while working as a Deputy Sheriff for Los Angeles County. He continued in his father’s military tradition and joined the Air Force in 1965, earning his pilot wings in 1966. In 1969, then Captain Vogl, deployed to Korat AB, Thailand for the Vietnam War in the F-4C fighter jet. He volunteered for the dangerous job of a Fast FAC (Forward Air Controller), earning several distinguished flying awards. In just 11 months of combat, he flew over 125 missions for 496 total combat hours. His aircraft was shot multiple times, but he never lost an airplane.
David continued his Air Force career flying the F-16 and F-111. He retired as a Colonel in 1992 at Maxwell Air Force Base, AL as the 3800th Air Base Wing Commander. He then flew for United Airlines for 10 years until his retirement in January 2002. At United, he flew the B-727, B-737, and finished in the B-747 flying Internationally over the Pacific Ocean.
Throughout all of his flying career, he said he never worked a day, as it was all pleasure. He said many times that he never could believe that they actually paid him to fly, if they had only known that he would have done it for free. David obtained three Masters degrees, self-taught flamenco and classical guitarist, author and brewmeister, cyclist, multiple marathon runner, web designer, and entrepreneur. He lettered in wrestling, football and pole vaulting each year in four separate High Schools. He loved life, people, football, a good scotch and cigar, parties with friends, and especially family.
David is survived by his wife, Karen. They met in the 8th grade in California and have been together ever since, including a full 56 years of marriage. He was the oldest child of Oscar James Vogl and Fannie Ellen (Hogg) Vogl who are both deceased. He has three siblings, Richard (Marcia), Doug, and Nancy (Laurie). David and Karen have three children Robert (Susan), Jeanne (Randy), and Michael (Stacey), as well as a total of ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Upon arriving to Oakmont in late 2018, Karen and David worked to initiate the Oakmont Veteran’s Club, which is becoming a quickly growing group in the community. The OVC provides a space for Veterans of any country’s military to meet and share the stories of their lives.
David will have a military service in the Springtime. Dates and location to be named later.