Joe Emory Anderson, Jr., Col. USAF (Ret.) age 91, was born on February 5, 1928, in Chester, South Carolina. He was the widower of Connie Edwards Anderson. His father owned a grocery store in Chester where Joe Jr. worked daily after school and in the summer. Joe Jr.'s mother, Ruth Byars Anderson, became a teacher and later was a clerk in the county office. Mr. Anderson is survived by three daughters; Debbie Childree (Ed) of Smyrna, Ga., Connie Anderson of Snellville, Ga, and Sandy Jensen (Randy) of Chester; five grand-children, Aaron, Kyle and Russell Childree, Dawn Davis and William E. Pitman; three great-grand-children, Olivia Davis, Jasmine and Ryan Pitman.
Mr. Anderson graduated from Chester High School in 1945, in the top ten percent of his class and was elected class secretary. Joe had two younger brothers; the late James “Crack” Anderson, a U.S. Marine Corps aviator. The other, the late George “Buck” Anderson, a Clemson University graduate, and Army Lt. Col. and served in combat in Korea and Vietnam. Joe had attended Clemson as a freshman in 1945-1946. In July 1946, Joe received a principal appointment to West Point. After four years of strenuous academics, Joe graduated in the top half of his class in June 1950. He earned a Masters Degree in aeronautical engineering and guided missiles. He taught at the USAF Academy in Colorado. He entered the Air Force in 1950 and retired in 1980. He was a fighter pilot in the Korean War and earned the Distinguished Flying Cross. He later served as a fighter pilot in the Vietnam War. During his 30 years in the Air Force he was stationed in Hawaii, Japan and The Pentagon. Mr. Anderson was a Baptist and an avid fan of the Clemson Tigers.
The family suggests memorial be made in lieu of flowers to the Connie Maxwell Children’s Home in Greenwood, SC by visiting conniemaxwell.com.
The funeral service for Mr. Anderson will be held 2p.m. Saturday in the chapel of Pollard Funeral Home. The burial will be in Chester Memorial Gardens with military honors.
Joe will be remembered by all who knew him as a man of honor and integrity.