Capt. Richard Michael "Mike" Ryan
US AIR FORCE
Mike Ryan was born in Portland, Oregon, participated in ROTC in college, and in 1965 entered active duty in the US Air Force as a 2nd Lieutenant. In 1966 he met Susan Thompson of McKinney, while she was a student at Texas Tech University in Lubbock. Susan and Mike were married that same year at St. Michael's Catholic Church in McKinney. Mike was trained as a pilot and during his career served at: Reese Air Force Base, Lubbock, Texas; McGuire AFB, New Jersey; and went through helicopter training at Sheppard AFB in Wichita Falls, Texas. His last duty station was Elgin AFB, near Ft. Walton Beach, Florida. Susan and Mike were in the process of buying a house in McKinney when he received orders for duty in Vietnam. On September 2, 1969, just a few weeks before he was to report to the combat zone, the Huey helicopter he was piloting crashed. Four other men were killed in the crash, all having recently returned to the States from duty in Vietnam. On receiving his orders for Vietnam, Mike was required to fill out all the required forms, including his last will and testament. In the will he specified that if he was killed, he would like to be buried in McKinney. Captain Mike Ryan is buried at Ridgeview Memorial Park on the south side of McKinney.
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