Cover photo for Robert Dallas Brubaker's Obituary
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1933 Robert Dallas Brubaker 2024

Robert Dallas Brubaker

January 18, 1933 — February 13, 2024



Robert Dallas Brubaker, a distinguished aviator, devoted family man, and passionate railroad enthusiast, passed away on February 13, 2024, surrounded by his family. Born in Philadelphia on January 18, 1933, his life journey touched lives across continents. 


Along with graduating from Gettysburg College, Robert also pursued an MBA at Auburn University. His academic achievements were merely a portion of a storied career. Commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force, he soared through the ranks, ultimately retiring as a colonel. His legacy in aviation was marked by courage, compassion, and countless lives saved. 


As a helicopter pilot, Robert piloted a range of models, including the H-21, HH-43, HH-53, HH-3, and HC-130.  He executed rescues worldwide. From the icy landscapes of Thule, Greenland, to the rugged mountains of Colorado and Wyoming, he fearlessly saved many in danger. More than 90 combat sorties in Vietnam and Laos further underscored his unwavering commitment to serving others. 


Throughout his long career, one of his most notable assignments, however, was not in the air.  During the late 1970s, he served as the United States Air Attaché to Poland. His diplomatic acumen and dedication left an indelible mark on international relations. 


Beyond his military accolades, Robert extended his service to others and filled many roles in his retirement. His volunteer work spanned editing articles for various publications and contributing to the operation of the Titan Missile Museum in Arizona. He also leaned into his passions, perfecting his golf swing and sharing this love for trains with his great-grandchildren, igniting their curiosity about the iron horses that crisscross the land. 


Robert Dallas Brubaker is survived by his brother David Brubaker and his three children: Melinda Joy Slater (Michael), Deirdre Roux Greene (Charles), and Randall David Brubaker (Julie). His legacy continues through six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren, each a testament to his pride and joy. 


On his 91st birthday, when asked about his life, Robert reflected on the privilege of serving and the profound satisfaction he found in every minute of it. His memory lives on, a beacon of valor and compassion for generations to come. Farewell, Colonel Brubaker—you’ve flown into eternity and into the arms of your awaiting wife, Denise... Leaving behind a sky full of gratitude and admiration.  


A memorial service will be held on Friday, April 12, 2024, at 10 a.m. at Fort Logan National Cemetery, Denver, CO. with full military honors.  If you’d like to honor Bob’s memory with a donation, consider supporting one of his favorite military foundations. Both USA Cares and Tunnel to Towers Foundation are organizations supporting veterans and their families. 


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