Briskel Birlond Baird Jr., “B.B.”, passed away on May 13, 2013, after a very lengthy illness. He was born in Roanoke Rapids, NC, on March 30, 1932, to Briskel Birlond Baird Sr. and Margaret Williams Baird.
He was raised in Richmond, Va., where he played high school basketball at Thomas Jefferson High School and went on to play at Lynchburg College in Virginia. While there, he was student body president and active in numerous clubs and organizations.
In July 1954, he joined the Marine Corps and graduated boot camp at Paris Island. On Dec. 19, 1954, he married his college sweetheart, Barbara Joan Lampa. He attended flight training at Pensacola Naval Air Station, earning his wings in 1955.
Later that year he was transferred to Japan along with his wife and first-born son, Bruce, to serve a remote tour of duty. After leaving the service in 1958, he and his family moved to Mineral Wells, Texas, where he worked for Southern Airways as a flight commander on Fort Wolters Army base. B.B. was very proud of his 17 years of service as a helicopter instructor pilot and flight commander. He trained many Army helicopter pilots before their tours in Vietnam.
After the Vietnam War, he worked for American Airlines in Dallas as a simulator instructor for the 707 aircraft. He later went back to doing what he loved the most, flying helicopters for Petroleum Helicopters off the coast of Louisiana. In his later years, he worked for Cantex Industries in Mineral Wells as a materials manager until he retired.
He is survived by his loving companion of 21 years, Judy A. Buchanan; his children, Dr. Bruce B. Baird and wife, Cynthia, Dr. Bonnie Baird Furner and husband, Paul, Dr. Brian C. Baird and wife, Robin, Lance Buchanan, Wade Buchanan and wife, Teresa, Elizabeth Burnett and husband, Hank, and Orin Buchanan and wife, Amy. He is also survived by his 23 grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and loving sister, Jacqueline Baird Warner, of Maryland.
The family will hold a memorial service at Baum-Carlock Bumgardner Funeral Home in Mineral Wells on Thursday, May 16, 2013, at 2 p.m.
Condolences may be left at www.bcbfuneralhome.com.
Baum-Carlock-Bumgardner Funeral Home