Robert J. “Bob” Parks
March 23, 1940 – January 25, 2022
Robert J. “Bob” Parks was born to Robert Jay and Hazel May (Hobbs) Parks on March 23, 1940, in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Bob graduated from Kalamazoo Public Schools in 1958, followed by a B.A. from Western Michigan University in 1962 and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Michigan State University in 1963 and 1967 respectively in History and Economics. He was a life-long Spartan. After serving in the United States Army from 1968 to 1970 in the rank of Captain, he taught as an Associate Professor and Member of the Graduate Faculty before entering Federal Service. As a pioneer in what he liked to describe as “applied history,” he served in the 1st Tactical Fighter Wing and the Tactical Air Command before becoming Command Historian for Pacific Air Forces, the Strategic Air Command, and the United States Strategic Command, retiring in 2001. He was the author of three books and numerous classified articles and studies.
In June 1965, he married Mary K. Stelson, who (survives or predeceased him). Bob is survived by wife, Mary; two sons, Robert Joseph Parks (Kris) and Dr. Alan Michael Parks (Heather); and seven grandchildren. Cremation has already taken place, and at the decedent’s request, there will be no ceremonies.