Colonel Ronald “Ron” Ray Ellis, 84, of San Antonio, TX, peacefully passed away on Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at his home. Ron was born March 22, 1936 in Baltimore, MD to Oliver and Clara Ellis. He was their only child. Ron graduated from the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute and went on to attend the University of Maryland. During school, Ron joined the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps, graduating in 1958 with a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. While in school, Ron married his high school sweetheart Ellen Louise Rumney on September 7, 1957. After graduating, Ron was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Air Force and entered active duty, August 31, 1959, to attend pilot training. Just prior to active duty, Ellen gave birth to Ron’s only child, Jeffrey, on August 9, 1959.
Ron graduated pilot training on October 1960 and started a long and illustrious career flying C-124’s at Dover AFB, Delaware and AC-47 Gunships in the Republic of Vietnam, followed by assignments at Williams AFB, AZ; Langley AFB, VA; the Pentagon; Laughlin AFB, TX; Chanute AFB, IL, Dhahran Saudi Arabia; McDill AFB, FL; and finally, Randolph AFB, TX where he retired in 1988 after 29 years of distinguished service as a Command Pilot. Ron accumulated more than 5500 flight hours in C-124, AC-47, T-33, T-37, and T-38 aircraft. Colonel Ellis was a Squadron and Group Commander and was awarded the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal. His military affiliations include the Order of Daedalians, The Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association, and China Post 1 of the American Legion Worldwide. Upon retirement from the Air Force, Ron worked for the Northrup Grumman Corporation retiring in 1998. He ran for public office in 2007 and was elected to the Edwards Aquifer Board of Directors representing Bexar County (District 5) for more than fourteen years. During this time he was appointed Chairman of the Finance Committee and Board Treasurer.
Ron was an avid outdoorsman who loved all hunting and fishing activities with duck hunting being a particular passion. Ron was an Endowment Member of the National Rifle Association, a member of the Texas Rifle Association , Ducks Unlimited , and the Amateur Trapshooting Association.
Ron is survived by his wife of 64 years Ellen; his son, Jeffrey with wife, Erin; grandchildren, Ainslie and Grant; as well as his best friend and constant companion Laddie.
A Graveside Service, featuring full United States Air Force Honors, will take place at 11:00AM on Friday, February 05, 2021 at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery – Shelter 1.
A Celebration of Life Reception will be held at a later date, due to current Covid 19 restrictions.