Elton Thomas Pollock
September 9, 1946 - May 25, 2016
Elton Thomas (ET) Pollock passed away on May 25, 2016 after a courageous
16-year battle with cancer. Born on Sept. 9, 1946, in Ft. Worth, Texas
to Robert and Virginia (Studebaker) Pollock, he graduated from Kearny
High School in San Diego. He married his high school sweetheart, Janet
Lovelace, hours after graduating from the USAF Academy.
Elton entered UPT after graduation and then was assigned to Laughlin
AFB, Texas as a T-38 IP. In July 1973 he went to Nakhon Phanom (NKP),
Thailand, as an OV-10 pilot. He remained in Southeast Asia, moving
to Clark Air Base one year later assigned as an OV-10 flight examiner
for Headquarters 13th AF and then worked in operations plans. In July
1976, he came to Edwards AFB as a student at the USAF Test Pilot School.
Following graduation, he was an F-4/F-15 test pilot with the 3247nd
Test Squadron, Eglin AFB, Fla.
From December 1980 to July 1983 he was an F-5/F-104 exchange test
pilot assigned to Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada. Returning to the U.S.,
he went to U.S.A.F Headquarters as the F-15 PEM becoming the deputy
special assistant for tactical modifications in January 1984. In July
1985 Elton received command of the 3247nd Test Squadron. Two years
later he moved to Tactical Air Command headquarters, Langley AFB,
Va., as the special assistant to the commander, Tactical Air Command.
Elton was promoted to the rank of Colonel Sept. 1, 1989 and was selected
as the Commandant of the USAF Test Pilot School. Elton assumed command
of the 46th Test Wing at Eglin AFB, Fla. in 1991. As commander, he
was responsible for USAF Weapons flight test with 4,000 employees
in New Mexico, Texas, New York and Florida.
A command pilot with 3,700 flying hours in 30 different aircraft,
his military decorations and awards include the Meritorious Service
Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Air Medal with one oak leaf cluster,
Air Force Commendation Medal with one oak leaf cluster and the Air
Force Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster. He has a BS in
engineering management and a MS in systems management. He is also
a graduate of Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College,
the National Security Management Course and the Canadian National
In 1994 Colonel Pollock retired from the Air Force and took his wife
on a bicycle trip across the country -- just the two of them, starting
in Savannah, Ga. and ending in San Diego, Calif. They went from east
to west against the wind and they did it with only what they could
take in their saddle bags.
After the AF, Elton worked for the next 16 years in the aerospace
industry for Lockheed and Raytheon. At Lockheed, he worked as a program
and as a capture manager winning a contract for the Army's Future
Combat System. At Raytheon, he was a director managing several special
While Elton loved his work, he was equally passionate about enjoying
the outdoors and spending time with family and friends. He was an
experienced scuba diver, a world traveler, a sailor, an expert prankster
with a quick and often inappropriate sense of humor and an avid mountain
climber who summited many of Colorado's famous Fourteeners. Elton
will always be remembered as one who lived life to its fullest.
He is survived by his wife, Janet; his two daughters, Sheila Baker
and Trisha Best; his two sons in law, Bruce Baker and Lawrence Best;
his seven grandchildren, George, Alexis, Victoria, Thomas, Emily,
Caroline and William; and his three younger siblings, Edmund Pollock,
Roberta Wallace and Janice Young. (Elton's
for the remembrance book.