Retired April 1, 1978.
Brigadier General Harold E. Confer is deputy chief of staff, logistics, Air Training Command, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas.
General Confer was born in 1924 in Culbertson, Neb., where he graduated from Culbertson High School in 1942. He then attended Colorado A&M College (now Colorado State University) for one year. In October 1943 he entered active military service and after basic training became an aviation cadet. He completed pilot training and received his pilot wings and commission as second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Air Corps in February 1945.
He next served as a flying instructor; received transition training in the B-29 aircraft; and later was transferred to Kadena Army Air Base, Okinawa, where he was a B-29 pilot with the 2d Bombardment Squadron. He went with the squadron to Smoky Hill Air Force Base, Kan., in May 1948, and with the 2d Squadron joined the 22d Bombardment Wing at March Air Force Base, Calif., in July 1949.
During the Korean War, he completed 26 combat missions with a total of 263 flying hours. He returned to March Air Force Base in 1951 where he was officer in charge of the 22d Bombardment Wing Standardization Board.
In November 1954 General Confer was transferred to Headquarters Strategic Air Command, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., and served in the Requirements Division of the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations. In September 1957 he entered the Air Command and Staff College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
General Confer returned to SAC and to flying duties at Carswell Air Force Base, Texas, in July 1958, where he remained until August 1964. He was a B-58 pilot with the 3958th Operational, Evaluation and Training Squadron and served as air operations officer for that squadron and the 3958th Combat Crew Training Squadron. He was pilot of the first B-58 select crew and chief of Standardization Division for the 43d Bombardment Wing. In July 1963 he became commander of the 63d Bombardment Squadron, which was the first supersonic bombardment squadron.
On Jan. 14, 1961, General Confer, flying a B-58 Hustler aircraft, established three new world speed records for the 1,000 kilometer closed course at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. For this achievement he received the Thompson Trophy.
In August 1964 he entered the Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. General Confer went to Beale Air Force Base, Calif., in July 1965, to the SR-71 Program assigned as deputy director of evaluation and testing for the 4200th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing; later was commander of the 4201st Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron (redesignated as 1st Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron) of the 9th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing. In October 1966 he became assistant deputy commander for operations for the 9th Wing, later served as vice commander, and in July 1970 became commander.
In June 1972 General Confer assumed duties as commander, 45th Air Division, SAC, with headquarters at Pease Air Force Base, N.H. In this position, he was responsible for the successful accomplishment of the operational mission of five SAC wings of which two were equipped with FB-111 aircraft.
In January 1973 General Confer was assigned as deputy director for strategic forces in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Research and Development, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
General Confer assumed duties as deputy chief of staff for logistics, Air Training Command, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, in May 1975.
His military decorations and awards include the Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal, Presidential Unit Citation Emblem with three oak leaf clusters, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon with oak leaf cluster, and the Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon. He is a command pilot.
He was promoted to the grade of brigadier general effective June 1, 1972, with date of rank May 29, 1972.