Retired April 1, 1980. Died Jan. 30, 1996.
Major General Rufus L. Billups is director, logistics plans, programs and transportation, in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Logistics and Engineering, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
General Billups was born in Birmingham, Ala., in 1928, where he graduated from Parker High School. He earned a bachelor of science degree from Tuskegee Institute, Ala., in 1949, and a master of science degree in business from the University of Colorado in 1957. He has an honorary doctorate degree from Guadalupe College of Texas.
General Billups was commissioned in the regular Air Force as a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officers' Training Corps Program at Tuskegee Institute. He completed the Air Tactical School at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., in May 1950 and served briefly at Norton Air Force Base, Calif. In January 1951, he began pilot training at Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas.
During the Korean War General Billups was Air Force liaison officer at the Army water ports of Pusan and Inchon.
From January 1953 to December 1955 General Billups served as a transportation officer in various units at New Castle County Airport, Wilmington, Del. He then entered the University of Colorado under the Air Force Institute of Technology program and graduated with a master of science degree in business in 1957.
General Billups left for Germany in July 1957 for an assignment with the 7100th Transportation Squadron at Lindsey Air Station, Germany. He returned to the United States in August 1961 for duty with the 803rd Transportation Squadron at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz.
General Billups completed a transportation executive training course at Hughes Aircraft Company, Culver City, Calif., in July 1964. He then was assigned as a staff officer in the Air Force inspector general's office at Norton Air Force Base, Calif.
In August 1968 General Billups was assigned at Tan Son Nhut Air Base, Republic of Vietnam, as director of aerial port operations, 2nd Aerial Port Group. During this one-year tour of duty, he flew 56 combat missions.
In September 1969 General Billups was transferred to Headquarters U.S. European Command at Vaihingen, Germany. He served there as staff transportation officer until August 1970, when he became director of transportation, Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe, at Lindsey Air Station.
He returned to the United States in May 1973 to become commander of the 12th Air Base Group at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas. In August 1974 he assumed duties as deputy director of transportation in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Systems and Logistics, Headquarters U.S. Air Force.
General Billups was appointed commander of the Defense General Supply Center, Defense Supply Agency, in Richmond, Va., in September 1975. He assumed his present duty in August 1978.
His military decorations and awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal and Air Force Outstanding Unit Award ribbon.
He was promoted to the grade of major general July 1, 1978, with date of rank Sept. 1, 1974.