Edward Lee Vance Sr., Chief Master Sergeant USAF, retired of Bear Valley Road, Fort Loudon, PA went to be with his Lord and Savior on March 17, 2023.
Ed was preceded in death by his father, Stanley E. Vance, mother, Ruth Vance Foreman, sister, Sonya Vance Horst, step-father, Frank Foreman and step-daughter Elena Martin. He is survived by his beloved wife: Donna Myers Vance of 30 years who he met and married at Freedom Worship Center, Fort Littleton in 1992, brother David Vance of Fort Loudon, children: Julie Vance of Colorado, son Edward L. Vance Jr and wife Shannon of Colorado, and step-children: Wyatt Rebuck and wife JoAnn, of Fort Loudon, Elisa Dunn and Joselito Rayos of Las Vegas, NV. Surviving grandchildren: Quest and Capri Guilliford of Las Vegas, NV, Gabrielle and Cadence Vance of CO, Derek and Luke Rebuck of Fort Loudon, PA, and several other grand and great-grandchildren who live in Nevada and Utah.
He graduated from James Buchanan High School in 1959 and entered the U.S. Air Force and retired after 29 years of honorable service. Ed played little league baseball, county league baseball, both slow and fast pitch softball, and enjoyed archery hunting, fishing, scuba diving, and skiing in Italy and Germany. Ed was a certified SCUBA diving instructor through PADI, NAUS, and YMCA and certified several hundred divers while serving in Okinawa, Virginia, and Arkansas.
Ed served in Pakistan, Germany, Japan, Turkey, Philippines, Vietnam (2 times), Okinawa, and Italy where he served as Regimental Sergeant Major for NATO. Stateside assignments were Texas, Mississippi (2 times), New York, Georgia, Maryland, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Virginia, Nevada and several temporary duty stations. His most valued award was the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with “V” for Valor as a Ground Radio Operator and volunteer spotter with the 10th Tactical Air Support Squadron, Vietnam. His other major awards were Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Meritorious Service medal (4 times), Air Force Commendation Medal, (2 times), Distinguished Presidential Unit Citation, Vietnam Service Medal and several lesser awards. Ed was selected as the Outstanding Data Processing person of the year for both the Military Airlift Command and the Tactical Air Command.
Ed graduated from Park College, MO, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resources. He earned a black belt in Jujitsu and second-degree brown belt in Karate. He enjoyed spending time hunting and fishing with his grandsons Derek and Luke who were especially important to him as was watching Derek play basketball and baseball.
Ed was a member of the St. Thomas AOG Church where he team-taught adult Sunday school for several years, and was a member of the men’s group and served as head usher. Ed attended night school at Franklin County Career and Technology Center, where he became proficient in carpentry, residential electrical, auto mechanics, small engine repair, and masonry. He then became a substitute teacher there working both full and part time for 21 years. He suffered greatly over the last 12 years from Agent Orange that he contracted in Vietnam and has undergone more than 40 surgeries.
There will be a viewing 6:00 - 8:00 PM on Friday, March 24, at Fries Funeral Home, Mercersburg, PA. A funeral service will be held 11:00 AM on Saturday, March 25 at the St. Thomas Assembly of God with a viewing starting at 9:00 AM.
The family thanks all for the earnest prayers of God’s people throughout this journey.