Dedicated to the Preservation of the
U.S. Air Force Helicopter History
Michael “Mike” Robert Armstrong, Lt. Colonel, USAF (Retired)July 20, 1935 – June 02, 2016
In Memory of Michael Robert ArmstrongJuly 20, 1935 – June 2, 2016
Michael Robert Armstrong of Jacksonville, FL, passed away Thursday, June 2, 2016. He was born July 20, 1935 in Dixon, IL to Robert Lee and Fama Ruth (Allen) Armstrong. Mike grew up in Oregon, IL where he attended the Silica School (a one room country school) and Oregon High School, class of 1953, then went on to earn a degree in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University in Peoria, IL. He received his commission through the Air Force ROTC program and entered active duty as a 2nd Lt. in 1958. While in Pilot Training School in Bainbridge, GA he met the love of his life, Eleanor Parker. They were married in December of 1959. Mike served…
Michael Robert Armstrong of Jacksonville, FL, passed away Thursday, June 2, 2016. He was born July 20, 1935 in Dixon, IL to Robert Lee and Fama Ruth (Allen) Armstrong.Mike grew up in Oregon, IL where he attended the Silica School (a one room country school) and Oregon High School, class of 1953, then went on to earn a degree in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University in Peoria, IL. He received his commission through the Air Force ROTC program and entered active duty as a 2nd Lt. in 1958. While in Pilot Training School in Bainbridge, GA he met the love of his life, Eleanor Parker. They were married in December of 1959.
Mike served a year tour in Vietnam where he was a Helicopter Gunship Instructor Pilot with the 20th Special Operations Squadron, The Green Hornets. He was a Command Pilot with a career log of over 4,100 hours of flight time in helicopters and fixed wing aircraft and was awarded the Senior Missileman Badge. His decorations include the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, two Meritorious Service Medals, Presidential Unit Citation, eight Air Medals, two Air Force Commendation Medals, the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Palm and seven Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards, including four with Valor device. He retired as a Lt. Colonel after 21 years of service and began his second career of 19 years as the Plant Engineer for Sikorsky Aircraft in Jupiter, FL .
He was a life member of several organizations including Masonic Oregon, IL Lodge 420 AF & AM, the VFW, Oregon IL Post 8739, NRA, Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity, Air Force Association, Special Operations Association, Military Officers Association, NAUS (National Assoc. for Uniformed Services), USAF Helicopter Pilot Association. He also served as a Deacon and Elder at First Presbyterian Church of North Palm Beach, FL. While living in Jacksonville he was a member of Mandarin Presbyterian Church where he especially enjoyed participating in the Pathfinders Sunday School class each week.
His greatest joy was spending time with his Eleanor – RVing, “antiquing” and creating beautiful quilts. They were happily married for 55 years until, in November of 2014, Eleanor lost her 17 year battle with breast cancer. Mike had a huge heart and a generous spirit. He had a deep, steadfast love for his family and he especially loved being a grandfather. His life of integrity, honor and faith has positively impacted the lives of countless others and he will be sorely missed. He is survived by his only daughter, Delta Armstrong Kraus (Bob), three grandchildren, Daniel, James and Lauren, and many beloved nieces, nephews and extended relatives. Mike was preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Lee Allen Armstrong, and his wife, Eleanor Parker Armstrong.
In lieu of flowers, donations should be sent in memory of Michael Armstrong to Narcolepsy Network 46 Union Drive, #A212 North Kingstown, RI 02852 or donate online at http://www.narcolepsynetwork.org.
Visitation will be held from 3:00pm to 5:00pm on Sunday, June 12, 2016 in Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home of Mandarin. The funeral service will be held at 11:30am on Monday, June 13, 2016 in Mandarin Presbyterian Church, 2501 Loretto Road, Jacksonville, FL 32223. Followed by the committal service in Jacksonville National Cemetery, 4083 Lannie Rd, Jacksonville, FL 32218.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home of Mandarin, 11801 San Jose Blvd. Jacksonville, FL 32223. www.hgmandarin.com (904) 288-0025
Arrangements under the direction of Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home, Jacksonville, FL.
Tuesday, November 01, 2016~Valenda Newell, Indianapolis, Indiana
Monday, June 13, 2016Dear Delta and family, your father and grandfather sounds like a true Hero and an amazing person. May God wrap his arms around you all and give you peace in saying farewell to a wonderful man. My sincerest Condolences, love to you all.~Sarah McLeroy, Neptune Beach, Florida
Wednesday, June 08, 2016Life will never be the same without sweet Uncle Mike. He will truly be missed. We have great memories of this sweet man that we will cherish forever and a day. Always on our minds & forever in our hearts. Take comfort in knowing that now you have a special guardian angel to watch over you. Love always Steve, Kristina, Kyle & Ethan Johnson!!~Kristina Johnson, Covington, Georgia
Wednesday, June 08, 2016God bless this great man and his family.~Jim Romick, Troy, Ohio
Wednesday, June 08, 2016Dear Delta and family: So very sad for this news! May God surround you in His arms with His tender love and mercy as you go through this time in your life! Walter and I were always fond of Mike and to see that they belonged to the same fraternity was a nice bit of news! So sorry I will be unable to attend his service, but I will be there in spirit! God bless you all. With love, Barbara Miller Henricks~Barbara Henricks, Gainesville, Florida
Monday, June 06, 2016Condolences to the family on the passing of a great hero from all of us in the Green Hornet and Special Ops family.~Alfonso (RT) Rivero, Santa Clarita, CaliforniaSunday, June 05, 2016
I remember Mike as a skilled UH-1 “Huey” helicopter pilot, an outstanding USAF Officer and a great guy. I served with Mike during my 1967-1968 Vietnam War tour with the 20th Helicopter Sq. “Green Hornets”. I honor him with my slow ‘Hand Salute’. God rest his soul. May God comfort and protect the Armstrong family.~Jim Burns, Navarre, Florida
Friday, June 03, 2016Although we lived on opposite sides of the continent, my first cousin Mike and I managed to keep in touch through the years. He had a lovely habit of sending me old postcards that had meaning for us, and I have kept them all. We were the only two of our family’s generation remaining, and I shall miss him so much.Rest in peace, dear cousin.~Linda Allen Anderson, Palm Desert, California
Friday, June 03, 2016Mike has been a member of my family for 58 years. I have nothing but fond memories of this man through my entire lifetime. With deep sadness, I say this, we have lost one of the kindest and finest men that ever walked this earth, and I loved him dearly. Goodbye my family member, and trusted friend, you will never be forgotten. With Love Tommy and Carol Ward~Tommy Ward, Bainbridge, Georgia