Retired July 1, 1986.
Major General Louis C. Buckman is chief of staff, Allied Air Forces Southern Europe (AIRSOUTH).
General Buckman was born in Shelbina, Mo., in 1932, and graduated from Shelbina High School in 1950. He then entered the University of Missouri and graduated in 1954 with a bachelor of science degree and a commission in the U.S. Air Force. General Buckman graduated from Squadron Officer School in 1960, Air Command and Staff College in 1964 and Air War College in 1972; all located at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. While attending Air Command and Staff College he concurrently earned a master of science degree in public administration from The George Washington University.
He entered pilot training in August 1954 and received his wings at Laredo Air Force Base, Texas, in September 1955. His initial assignment was to the 506th Air Refueling Squadron at Bergstrom Air Force Base, Texas, flying KB-29s.
In August 1957 General Buckman was assigned to the 92nd Bombardment Wing at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., where he qualified in the KC-135. A year later he transferred to Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., to the newly formed 34th Air Refueling Squadron, and served as standboard co-pilot, aircraft commander and instructor pilot. During this assignment he attended Squadron Officer School. In July 1964, following Air Command and Staff College, he was assigned to the 2nd Bombardment Wing at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., where he served as an instructor pilot and as KC-135 standboard branch chief. Two years later he became aide-de-camp to the commander of 2nd Air Force at Barksdale.
The general transferred to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., in August 1969, for duty as assistant executive officer for the deputy chief of staff for personnel, and subsequently served as executive secretary for the Air Staff Board's Force Structure Committee. General Buckman completed the Air War College in June 1972 and was designated a distinguished graduate. While there he was initiated into the Order of Daedalians. He subsequently became deputy commander for operations of the 320th Bombardment Wing, Mather Air Force Base, Calif., in July 1972. Shortly after arrival he was sent on temporary duty to Kadena Air Base, Japan, as deputy commander for operations, 376th Strategic Wing. He returned to Mather in December 1972.
General Buckman become vice commander of the 92nd Bombardment Wing at Fairchild Air Force Base in June 1973 and then wing commander in February 1974. From June to September 1975, he was assigned as chief of the Strategic Division in the Directorate of Operations at Headquarters U.S. Air Force. He was then appointed assistant deputy director for operational forces in the Directorate of Operations.
From December 1975 to July 1978, General Buckman served as deputy director for combat readiness within the Directorate of Operations and Readiness, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Operations at Air Force headquarters. General Buckman then became commander of the 42nd Air Division, Strategic Air Command, Blytheville Air Force Base, Ark. He commanded the 3rd Air Division at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, from August 1979 to August 1980. The general then served as deputy chief of staff for operations, Headquarters Strategic Air Command, Offutt Air Force Base. In September 1982 he became chief of the Joint Military Aid Group, Greece, and the senior U.S. defense representative in Greece. He assumed his present duties in August 1984.
A command pilot, General Buckman has more than 6,800 flying hours. He flew 56 missions in Southeast Asia, logging more than 370 combat hours. His military decorations and awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster.
He was promoted to major general March 1, 1980, with date of rank July 1, 1976.