Retired June 30, 1965. Died Aug. 4, 1993.
Maj. Gen. Kenneth P. Bergquist is commander of the Air Force Communications Service which provides adequate, reliable and secure communications, flight facilities and air traffic control service to the U.S. Air Force and other government or civil agencies.
General Bergquist was born in Crookston, Minn., in 1912. In 1928 his family moved to Grand Forks, N.D., where he graduated from Central High School and then attended the University of North Dakota for one year. With a congressional appointment, he entered the U.S. Military Academy in 1931 and graduated in 1935 with a commission as a second lieutenant.
In September 1935, General Bergquist entered the Primary Flying School at Randolph Field, Texas and in October 1936 received his pilot's wings from the Advanced Flying School at Kelly Field, Texas.
The general's first assignment was with the 37th Attack Squadron at Langley Field, Va. In December 1937 he became assistant operations officer of the 8th Pursuit Group at Langley and later served as assistant operations officer in Headquarters 2nd Wing, General Headquarters Air Force.
In mid-1939, as a first lieutenant, he was assigned to Wheeler Field, Hawaii, with the 18th Pursuit Group. In June 1940 he became the operations and intelligence officer of the 18th. A year later he moved to the 14th Pursuit Wing to become its operations officer. The 14th's designation was changed to the Hawaiian Interceptor Command and shortly after the United States' entry into World War II was changed again to 7th Fighter Command. He remained as operations officer of that command until June 1942. In 1942, General Bergquist went on temporary duty to New Caledonia to establish an air defense and fighter control system for U.S. forces on that island.
From July 1942 to October 1944, he served in the operations section of Army Air Force Headquarters, Washington, D.C. Returning to the Pacific in 1944, he saw duty on Saipan with the 73rd Bomb Wing (Heavy) and then on Iwo Jima as operations officer, 7th Fighter Command.
In September 1945, General Bergquist returned to Army Air Force Headquarters in Washington and was named deputy to the assistant chief of staff for operations. In July 1947, he was sent to Athens, Greece, to be military air attache and returned to the United States in August 1949.
After graduating from the National War College in 1950, General Bergquist served for six months at Mitchel Air Force Base in Continental Air Command Headquarters until a portion of it was designated the Air Defense Command. He moved with the new Air Defense Command to Colorado Springs, Colo., in January 1951. As director of plans and requirements, he was involved in planning the U.S. air defense system. He became deputy chief of staff for operations, Air Defense Command in September 1951. He served in this capacity until June 1955.
General Bergquist then returned to Washington, D.C. as director of operations at Air Force Headquarters for two years, and then assistant deputy chief of staff for operations.
In June 1958 General Bergquist was assigned as deputy commander (ARDC) for air defense systems integration at L.G. Hanscom Field, Mass. At the same location in 1960 the Air Force concentrated management of the development and implementation of all its ground electronic systems and General Bergquist became Commander of the Command and Control Development Division which absorbed these functions. In April 1961 with the establishment of the Air Force Systems Command and the Air Force Logistics Command, the Hanscom Field organizations were consolidated and renamed the Electronic Systems Division of the Air Force Systems Command. General Bergquist assumed command of that division.
In February 1962 General Bergquist assumed his present position as commander of the Air Force Communications Service.