Dedicated to the Preservation of the
U.S. Air Force Helicopter History
Donald Eugene Stranahan, Major, USAF (Retired)April 06, 1934 – November 17, 2017
Donald Eugene Stranahan, 83, of Northampton, Pa., entered into Christ’s Eternal Victory Nov. 17, 2017, 12:28 p.m.
His loving wife Rosemarie Kamper Stranahan was at his side. They have been joined in holy matrimony since Dec. 4, 1956. His family also surrounded him in peace at Moravian Hall Square’s Galilee House, Nazareth, Pa.
Donald was born in Cadiz, Ohio, the son of the late Lyle and Elizabeth Gnagy Stranahan.
As a young boy, his family moved to Spartansburg, Pa., were he was schooled and graduated from Sparta Merged High School 1953. In 1954, he attended one year at Penn State. Donald then moved on to honorably serve his country and pursued a lifelong career as pilot of many aircraft. 1955-1994 USAF Major, Retired. Active Duty Service 1955-1966: Aviation Cadet Program 1955; Multi-engine B-25 Pilot Program Graduate 1956; Vietnam Veteran 1964-1965, Detachment 6, 38th Air Rescue Squadron, Bien Hoa Air Base where he flew 396 Combat Missions with Kaman H-43B Helicopter. He was awarded the Airman’s Medal for Heroism April 27, 1965, and was awarded 13 times The Air Medal for meritorious achievement while participating in sustained aerial flight.
Back in the U.S. 1965-1966 he was Helicopter Detachment Commander at Laughlin Air Force Base in Texas. Donald served from 1966 to 1985 Retired Reserve. From 1966 to 1989 he flew for Eastern Airlines Captain, Retired, and during this time also served in the New York Air National Guard 1968-1976. Donald culminated his career as one of the 10 EAL Captains who co-owned and started their own airline in which he flew from 1992 to 1999 Kiwi International Air Lines Captain, Retired.
In addition to his wife, surviving are: son, Donald Eugene Stranahan II with wife Sheila and children Cullen Lyell and Shaelea Marie of Northampton; daughter, Jeannie Marie with husband Anthony Dimitrios Mitsos of Northampton; daughter, Tracy Elissa with husband Kim Allen Buskirk and sons Mason Allen and Chapman Kim of Kunkletown; daughter, Megan Corinne Stranahan of Nazareth; his brothers, Roger Wiley Stranahan of Spartansburg and William Lyle Stranahan of Munhall, along with many nieces, nephews and cousins.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made out to St. Matthew’s U.C.C., 102 Church Road, Kunkletown, PA 18058.
A celebration of his life and love will be held Monday, Dec. 4, 6 p.m. at St. Matthew’s U.C.C.. in Kunkletown, officiated by the Rev. Suzanne Brooks-Cope.
A Committal with Military Honors will take place on Saturday, Dec. 9, 11 a.m. at Woodlawn Cemetery, 26242 Route 89, Spartansburg, PA 16434.