Colonel Charles C. “Charlie” Bock
Colonel Charles C. “Charlie” Bock 24 November 1925 ~ 22 August 2019
Colonel Charles C. “Charlie” Bock was born on 24 November 1925 in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He passed away on 22 August 2019 at the Tahoe Forest Hospital. He served two years in the Army Air Corps following graduation from high school in 1943. After the end of WWII he earned a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Purdue University.
Charlie married his high school sweetheart, Geraldine Chandler, in 1946. She was a perfect and supporting partner through their forty years of marriage. Together they produced a son and two daughters. She lost a two-year battle with cancer in 1986.
A strong passion for flying led to a thirty-year career in the United States Air Force. He graduated from pilot training in 1951, flew a combat tour in Korea and was then selected to attend the USAF Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base in 1954. He remained at EAFB for six years in Flight Test Operations, where he flew and tested many of the new airplanes coming into the AF inventory. After a combat tour in Vietnam, circumstances led to a second assignment in flight test at EAFB and the testing of new airplanes including the SR-71. He retired from the USAF in 1973 to accept a position with Rockwell International as a Chief Test Pilot on the B-1 program. He and his crew made the first flight of the B-1 on 23 December 1974. He accumulated 600 flying hours in that airplane before retiring in 1981.
In retirement Charlie moved to Incline Village, NV where he met Joyce Anderson and after a beautiful courtship, convinced her to marry him. They were wed in 1997 and enjoyed a happy and active life together.
Charlie logged over 10,000 flying hours and flew 105 different types of aircraft during his flying days. He was awarded two Distinguished Flying Crosses and six Air Medals. A Fellow in the Society of Experimental Test Pilots, he served on the Board of Directors for several years and was a past Vice President of the Society. He received the Society’s Tenhoff Award in 1975 for the best technical paper presented at that year’s symposium and was honored with the Kinchloe Award in 1976 as that year’s Outstanding Test Pilot. He was named to the Lancaster, California Aerospace Walk of Honor in 1994. Charlie was inducted into the Iowa Aviation Museum’s Hall of Fame in 2006 and was presented with an Outstanding Aerospace Engineer recognition from Purdue University the same year.
He is survived by wife Joyce, son Charles, daughters Susan and Beverly, six grandchildren and five great grandchildren.
A Celebration of Life will be held on September 21st, 3:30pm at The Chateau, 955 Fairway Blvd. in Incline Village.
In lieu of flowers a donation can be made to the Reno VA Hospital, Homeless Veterans program. Attention Voluntary Service 975 Kirman Ave, Reno, NV 89502