Originally created 10/03/04

Col. Eria Westbrook (PLEASANT, S.C.)



PLEASANT, S.C.- Col. Eria Ogden "Wes" Westbrook, 85, died on Thursday, September 30, 2004. Born January 24, 1919, in Ashland, Oklahoma, he was the son of Ellie Westbrook and Verda Collie Westbrook. Col. Westbrook was a graduate of Eastern New Mexico State University. He joined the U.S. Army Air Corp. as a 2nd Lieutenant in November, 1941. He attended flight school and flew and trained other pilots on numerous aircraft during his career, including fighters, gliders, and bombers. Some highlights of his military career during W. W. II included flying "The Hump" over the Himalaya numerous times to deliver troops and supplies to the Pacific Theatre from India. He trained the Doolittle Raiders in Columbia, SC on "short take-offs" in preparation for the raid on Tokyo from the aircraft carrier Hornet, and trained glider pilots for the night assaults on Germany. Following W. W. II, "Wes" served our countr y as Military Attache in Central and South America and as Legislative Liaison at the Pentagon. Col. Westbrook also served as a SAC (Strategic Air Command) Commander during the Cold War. Following retirement from the Air Force in 1968 he entered into the restaurant and real estate business in Lake Tahoe, California. He developed a love of gourmet cooking to the delight of family and friends and enjoyed cooking his entire life. Col. Westbrook was preceded in death by his first wife, Catherine Delczeg Westbrook, his parents, two sisters, and a brother. He is survived by his wife, Mildred Dunbar Gardner Westbrook; a son, Robert Westbrook, and his wife Aimee and their two children, Jackson and Grace Westbrook, all of Mill Valley, CA; a sister, Minnie Lee Nelson of Topock, AZ; 2 step-daughters, Dixie Dunbar and her daughter, Carolyne of Sullivan's Island, SC, and Sandra Bruenner and her husband Dave and two sons, Willy and David Bruenner, all of Columbia, SC; and a dear niece, Pat Swigart a nd her husband Russ of Sunnyvalle, CA. Inurnment with Military Honors will take place at the National Cemetery in Arlington, VA at a date and time to be announced. The family will be receiving guests at the Bruenner home, 6100 Moss Springs Road in Columbia, SC on Sunday, October 3,2004 from 3 to 6 p.m. Donations may be made to Hospice House of Hospice of Charleston 3870 Leeds Ave. Suite 101, North Charleston, SC 29405. McAlister-Smith Funeral Home, Mt. Pleasant Chapel is assisting the Westbrook Family. Sign the guestbook at AugustaChronicle.com

The Augusta Chronicle October 3, 2004