William G. Reschke, Jr. 1925 - 2012 Folsom, California
William G. Reschke, Jr., died on June 20, 2012, in Folsom, California. He was 87.
He was born January 9, 1925, in Verdon, Nebraska, to William and Sophie (Santo) Reschke. He is the eldest son of eight children. He grew up with his family on farms in Nebraska and Kansas.
William is a distinguished military veteran. He enlisted in the U.S Army during World War II and fought in the Pacific where he made 6 beachheads. He was awarded two silver stars for extraordinary heroism and valor during combat. After the war, he obtained a B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of Kansas, and joined the U.S. Air Force in 1951. He flew missions in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. In 1961, William became a test pilot, an elite position held only by the Air Force’s top pilots. He attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel when he retired from the Air Force and received numerous medals and citations for distinguished service and outstanding bravery. He served his country for over twenty- three years. After his military service, William worked as a commercial airline pilot. He flew the routes from Tokyo to San Francisco, frequently stopping in Hawaii, one of his favorite places.
William married the late Valerie Audroue in 1960. They were married fifty-one years, and raised three children together. They lived in Ohio and Japan and finally settled in California in 1975.
William was a beloved husband, father and grandfather. He enjoyed talking about his childhood on the farm. He loved to tell stories about having his teeth knocked crooked when the family horse kicked him, and getting into trouble when he flipped over his dad’s new tractor in a ditch. He also loved to share stories about his war experiences. His patriotism and discipline are well known by all. He enjoyed family gatherings and spending time with his grandchildren.
William is survived by two daughters: Julie Unruh and husband, Carter of El Dorado Hills, California, Michele Kourey and husband, Michael of Danville, California; one son: William Reschke of Bolinas, California; four grandchildren: Rachel, Grant, Austin, and Lauren. He also leaves behind two sisters: Mary Cashman of Merriam, Kansas, Joan Jurgensmeier of Hiawatha, Kansas; one brother: Ralph Reschke of Lawrence, Kansas.
William is preceded in death by his wife: Valerie; three brothers: Henry, Bob, and John; one sister who died in infancy: Ruth Ann.
Catholic funeral mass and interment will take place at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.
Those wishing to contact the family may call Michele Kourey, daughter, at 925-683-2339, or Ralph Reschke, brother, at 785-865-8059.