Welcome to the memorial page for

William Ernest DeForest

September 7, 1922 ~ October 15, 2017 (age 95)

Lieutenant-Colonel William E. “Bill” DeForest, 95, died peacefully, and went home to be with the Lord. On October 15th, 2017. He is pre deceased by his loving wife of 53 years, Myrtle Anna DeForest. He is survived by his 2 sons, Doug DeForest (Debra), Mark DeForest (Alice) and daughter, Linda Topper (Don); 10 grandchildren and many great grandchildren, nieces and nephews. Bill served in the USAF for 30 years. He was a veteran pilot of World War II, Korean and Vietnam Wars. In World War II, alone, he flew 56 missions over enemy territory, receiving the Distinguished Flying Cross, Purple Heart, Air Medal and many Campaign Medals. Prior to his retirement in 1972, at MacDill A.F.B. Florida, Bill enrolled in trade school classes including, brick and block laying, AC repair, and welding. He returned to his home in Shalimar, Florida and became a long time member of Shalimar United Methodist Church. Bill had a good life. It does not just take mere intelligence to be a good pilot, but patriotism, bravery, and leadership. To be the head of the charge, and to be the one symbolically rallying everyone in the battle constantly. It is extremely important for one to have these essential qualities as an officer, who is already a leader. Bill loved his God. He loved his country. He loved the American flag. He loved his wife and his children. We will miss his stories. We will miss him dearly. As his wife wrote to him from a poem from an unknown writer, “when you must come home this way alone. I will greet you with a smile and welcome you home”. Services will take place on Tuesday, October 24, 2017 at Shalimar United Methodist Church, Shalimar, Florida, Visitation will be from 9:30AM to 10:30AM followed immediately by the Funeral Service officiated by
Dr. Philip McVay. Burial will follow at 2:00PM; Barrancas National Cemetery at the Naval Air Station Pensacola. Instead of flowers the family requests that you please make a donation to the Alzheimer's Foundation; Expressions of love and sympathy can be viewed or submitted online at

Charitable donations may be made to:

Cure Alzheimer's Fund
34 Washington Street, Suite 200, Wellesley Hills MA 02481
Tel: 1-781-237-3800

 Service Information

Funeral Service
October 24, 2017

10:30 AM
Shalimar United Mehodist Church
1 Old Ferry Road
Shalimar, FL 32579

October 24, 2017

2:00 PM to 2:45 PM
Barrancas National Cemetery

Pensacola, FL


Time: TBD to TBD
Barrancas National Cemetery
Naval Air Station, 80 Hovey Road
Pensacola, FL

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