Retired June 1, 1990.
Brigadier General John P. Dickey is commander of field command, Defense Nuclear Agency, Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M. He is responsible for the agency's overall nuclear activities, which encompass such areas as stockpile management, safety, inspection, and research and development.
General Dickey was born in Minneapolis in 1935, where he graduated from high school. He received a bachelor's degree in social science from Troy State University in 1975. The general completed Squadron Officer School in 1962, Armed Forces Staff College in 1970 and Air War College in 1975 as a distinguished graduate.
Upon receiving his commission through the aviation cadet program in April 1958, General Dickey received his pilot wings at Bryan Air Force Base, Texas. After advanced fighter training in F-86F's and F-100A's, he was assigned to Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., as an F-100 pilot.
In July 1960 General Dickey transferred to the 10th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Hahn Air Base, West Germany. After a four-year tour of duty at Hahn, he became a fighter weapons instructor at the U.S. Air Force Weapons School, Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. From 1965 to 1966 the general served a temporary tour of duty in Southeast Asia, flying combat in F-100s as a Wild Weasel pilot.
From December 1966 to December 1968 he flew the No. 4 slot position with the Air Force aerial demonstration team, the Thunderbirds. He returned to Southeast Asia in January 1969 as an F-100 pilot with the 355th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Phu Cat Air Base, Republic of Vietnam. During this tour of duty, he flew 199 combat missions, 70 of them as a high-speed (Misty) forward air controller in F-100s.
After graduation from the Armed Forces Staff College in July 1970, General Dickey was assigned to Headquarters 4th Allied Tactical Air Force, Ramstein Air Base, West Germany. While there he served as a tactical evaluator and special plans officer until April 1973, when he assumed command of the 526th Tactical Fighter Squadron, flying F-4E's from Ramstein.
Returning to the United States in June 1974, the general entered Air War College. After graduation he remained at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., and served on the Air Command and Staff College staff. He returned overseas in June 1976 and was named vice commander of the 39th Tactical Fighter Group, Incirlik, Turkey. In May 1978 he became deputy chief of plans, Plans and Policy Division, Supreme Headquarters Allies Powers Europe, Mons, Belgium.
The general was assigned to Hill Air Force Base, Utah, in June 1979 and served as vice commander, 388th Tactical Fighter Wing (the first F-16 wing at Hill), until April 1981, when he became director of operations, 12th Air Force, Bergstrom Air Force Base, Texas. He returned to Europe in February 1982 and served as director of command and control, Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Ramstein Air Base. In June 1983 he became commander of the 513th Tactical Airlift Wing, Royal Air Force Station Mildenhall, England. In June 1985 he became deputy commander of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's 5th Allied Tactical Air Force in Vicenza, Italy. He assumed his present command in January 1988.
General Dickey is a command pilot with more than 4,500 flying hours in a variety of fighter aircraft. His military decorations and awards include the Silver Star, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross with oak leaf cluster, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with nine oak leaf clusters, Joint Service Commendation Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal with four oak leaf clusters.
He was promoted to brigadier general June 1, 1985, with same date of rank.