Richard Taylor (“Dick”) Drury Obituary

Richard Taylor (“Dick”) Drury, 94, of Lakeway, died at home among family on August 31 of complications from a fall. Born in Ft. Leavenworth, KS on September 20, 1927 to Col. and Mrs. Frederick Drury, Dick enjoyed growing up in the family’s military tradition, graduating from high school at the New Mexico Military Institute.

After graduating, he served a brief stint in the United States Merchant Navy at the end of World War II. He graduated from West Point in 1950 and became a pilot in the US Air Force. He flew the B-26 during the Korean War, logging 87 combat hours during 20 night combat missions.

He interrupted his career in the Air Force to obtain a master’s degree in aeronautics and astronautics from MIT in 1960, then taught engineering at West Point for four years. Ready to get back to flying, Dick got his paratrooper wings and started flying the C-130.

Moving to various locations in the Far East during the Vietnam War, Dick flew 315 combat missions in the C-130, totaling 361 combat hours. He returned to the United States to attend the Air War College, then moved to several other bases to take on positions of increasing responsibility as he was promoted.

His penultimate assignment was his favorite, as combined military commander at Lajes Field in the Azores. As Dick said, “My boss was 3,000 miles away, and he promised to leave me alone as long as I got it right.” After his last tour in Washington D.C., he retired as a brigadier general and moved to Lakeway in January 1980, where he began a second career as a lecturer and associate chairman of the aeronautical engineering department of UT Austin, retiring again in 1993.

He was married for 30 years to the former Bonnie Fleming of Carthage IL, until her untimely death in 1985. He was then married to the former Marie Orwell of London, UK for 35 happy years. Known to the Lakeway community simply as “The General”, Dick’s sense of humor and easy smile were always ready. However, his many years of service behind the scenes and advising individuals and the community at large are perhaps his greatest legacy.

Dick is survived by his wife Marie and children Richard T. (Kathy) Drury II of Wausau WI, Elizabeth (Andy) Lain of Little Rock, AR, and William (Jill Giordano) of Geyserville CA. He has six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at Lakeway Church at 2 p.m. on Saturday, September 17. Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in their name to the St. David’s Foundation.

Posted on September 12, 2022

Posted in Austin American Statesman

service information

Memorial service

Lake Road Church

September 17, 2022 at 2:00 p.m.

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