STEVEN I. KASSAN
Ocala – Steven I. Kassan, 74, devoted husband of Roberta J. Kassan of Ocala, passed away January 6, 2017 in Ocala, Florida.
Funeral services were held at Florida National Cemetery, Bushnell, Florida on January 11, 2017.
Steve was born in Queens, NY, on December 12, 1942, to Murray and Ida Kassan. He graduated from East Meadow High School and the State University of New York, in Farmingdale, NY with an Associate Degree in Aircraft Operations.
Steve entered the United States Air Force in November 1962 and completed a distinguished career, retiring after 22 years of service to his country. While in the Air Force, he completed a four year BA degree in Political Science at Syracuse University, a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Golden Gate University, and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration in Aviation from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.
Steve flew 29 combat missions over Vietnam as a B-52D Electronic Warfare Officer. He completed Pilot Training at Moody AFB, GA in July 1968 flying the T-41A, T-37 and T-38. He went on to fly T-29s for the Navigator Training School at Mather AFB, CA. In October 1970, he was assigned to fly the C-130B Tactical Transport with the 772nd and 774th Tactical Airlift Squadrons, Clark AB, Philippines. He flew numerous combat sorties out of Cam Ranh Bay, Vietnam. He also became an Emergency Action Controller at the 13th Air Force Control Center and flew VIP Transport, in C-47s and C-123s. Upon return from overseas, Steve became an Assistant Professor of Aerospace Studies, AFROTC, at Manhattan College, NY.
In June 1976, he began flying the C-130E and C-130H with the 61st Tactical Airlift Squadron, Little Rock AFB, AR. His next assignment was to the 322nd Airlift Division as the Chief Controller of the European Airlift Control Center, Ramstein AB, Germany. In April 1980, he was selected to be the MAC representative to the USAFE Readiness Center as Chief of Airlift Readiness. He arrived at McGuire AFB, NJ, in August 1981, where he became a Resource Plans Officer, and in August 1982, he became Chief of Resources Plans. Steve retired as a Command Pilot, with the rank of Major. He completed Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College, National Security Management, Academic Instructor School, and Air War College. His decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal (2), the Air Medal (2) and the Commendation Medal. He accumulated 300 combat flying hours as a Navigator/Electronic Warfare Officer and 300 combat hours as a pilot. He had a total of 5,000 flying hours.
After his military retirement, he worked as an Information Systems Manager for the State of New Jersey, Dept of Human Services, retiring after 20 years of service on April 1, 2005. He continued to fly light general aviation aircraft, obtaining a FAA ATP rating. He also spent a lot of time building two kit airplanes. In 2005, he moved to Leeward Air Ranch in Ocala, FL where he flew for fun.
He is a member of the Quiet Birdmen, Order of Daedalians, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) (including EAA Chapter 216 and 812), Florida Aero Club, Air Force Association (AFA), Military Officers Association of America (MOAA), and the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).
He is survived by his wife, Roberta J. Kassan; sons, Mark, Andrew, and David; and grandchildren, Joshua, Breanne, Samantha, Jessica, Lucas, and Ashley.
Published in Ocala Star-Banner from Jan. 13 to Jan. 14, 2017
Kassan, Steven I. [MCxfaculty RIP]
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Colon, Philip J. (MC1962) added this request to his prayer circle.
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