Bowling Green native Bobbie G Pedigo began a distinguished career of service to his country in 1951 when he joined he Kentucky National Guard at 18 years of age. Over his 51-year career of active duty and civilian federal service, he qualified on several fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft, amassing 2000 hours of flight time.
In 1961, Pedigo’s unit was called to active duty, and sent to Ft. Knox. He elected to remain on active duty, and was selected for Army Fixed Wing Flight School at Fort Rucker, Alabama. Following graduation in 1963, Pedigo was assigned to 503rd Aviation Battalion in Germany where he transitioned to helicopters. He qualified in two of the most versatile aircraft in the Army’s inventory, the Bell OH-13 Sioux and the UH-1 Iroquois.
In 1966, Pedigo arrived at Ft. Benning, Georgia, and took command of the 341st Airfield Operations Detachment, of the 25th Aviation Battalion, and prepared his unit to ship out to Chu Chi, Vietnam. The refueling facility he and his soldiers built there became the prototype for aircraft refueling stations throughout Vietnam.
He returned to Ft. Rucker in 1968 as an Instructor Pilot in the Cessna 01 Bird Dog and the deHavilland L20 Beaver. These liaison aircraft were used for many specialized missions in South East Asia.
Pedigo returned to Vietnam in 1970, serving as Executive Officer of the 145th Combat Aviation Battalion, but was quickly chosen to command the 68th Assault Helicopter Company.
After his Vietnam tours, he graduated in 1973 from the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, before returning to Fort Rucker where he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in 1975. His next assignment was as the Professor of Military Science at the University of Kentucky. He retired from active duty at Ft. Knox in 1980.
Pedigo wasn’t quite finished with the Army, however. Following his military career, he served for 21 years as a civilian contractor in the U.S. Federal Service. Highlights include his role with the 11th Armored Calvary Regiment, “Blackhorse” in Fulda, Germany as the Deputy Garrison Commander from 1983 through 1989, and later Deputy Garrison Commander in Wiesbaden from 1999 through 2003. Bobbie retired from government service at Fort Campbell, Kentucky with a cumulative 51-years of service to his country.
Pedigo held a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in History from the University of Nebraska and a Master of Science degree in Systems Management from the University of Southern California.
His military awards include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Air Medal and Army Commendation Medal.
Lt. Col. Pedigo died June 17, 2022 at the age of 88. He is survived by his wife Joyce Ann Kirby, his daughters Virginia Morehead, Laura Helems, Michele Garcia, and Regina Galvin.