Retired April 1, 1990.
Major General Larry N. Tibbetts is commander, Air Force Military Training Center, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. A major component of the Air Training Command, the center is responsible for commissioning high-quality second lieutenants through the Officer Training School; conducting basic military training for all enlisted personnel entering the Air Force, Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard; providing technical training in nearly 100 courses; and providing English language training for foreign military personnel.
General Tibbetts was born in 1934, in Trenton, Mo., and spent his junior high and high school years in Plymouth, Ind. He received a bachelor's degree in English and speech from DePauw University in 1956 and a master's degree in public administration from The George Washington University in 1968. He completed Squadron Officer School in 1961, Air Command and Staff College in 1968, and the Naval War College in 1975.
He was commissioned through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program at DePauw University in 1956. After graduating from primary-basic navigator training at Harlingen Air Force Base, Texas, he completed jet interceptor training at James Connally Air Force Base, Texas. The general spent the next several years flying F-89 and F-101 interceptors at Presque Isle and Dow Air Force bases, Maine, and Griffiss Air Force Base, N.Y.
In March 1962 he became an instructor at the U.S. Air Force Interceptor Weapons School, Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla. Two years later he moved to Headquarters Air Defense Command, Ent Air Force Base, Colo., as a project officer in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Plans. During this time General Tibbetts was the principal action officer responsible for the development and deployment of the YF-12 interceptor, prototype of the SR-71, the most sophisticated reconnaissance aircraft in the Air Force inventory. After completing Air Command and Staff College in September 1968, he spent a year with the 366th Tactical Fighter Wing, Da Nang Air Base, Republic of Vietnam, where he flew 207 combat missions in F-4E's.
Upon his return to the United States in May 1970, he was assigned to the Interceptor Division, Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Studies and Analysis, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., where he planned and conducted studies dealing with employment of interceptors for strategic defense of the United States. He also directed the final series of conceptual analyses involving employment of the airborne warning and control system.
After graduation from the Naval War College in July 1975, General Tibbetts returned to Air Force headquarters as deputy assistant for colonel assignments, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel. He became the assistant for colonel assignments in May 1977 and transferred with the function to the Air Force Manpower and Personnel Center at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, in July 1978.
In May 1980 the general was named deputy chief of staff for manpower and personnel, Headquarters Air Force Logistics Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. He was assigned to Air Force headquarters in March 1983 as director of manpower and organization in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Manpower and Personnel. In October 1984 he became deputy chief of staff for technical training, Headquarters Air Training Command, Randolph Air Force Base. The general was named commander of Lowry Technical Training Center, Lowry Air Force Base, Colo., in October 1986. He assumed his present command in June 1988.
General Tibbetts has more than 3,500 flying hours in a variety of jet fighter and trainer aircraft. His military decorations and awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross with oak leaf cluster, Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Air Medal with 12 oak leaf clusters and Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters.
He was promoted to major general Aug. 1, 1984, with date of rank Nov. 1, 1980.