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In Memoriam - Tommie Church

June 05, 2020

In Memoriam - Tommie Church

AsMA HQ staff were saddened to hear of the passing of Tommie G. Church, D.O., M.P.H., Col.(Ret.), USAF.

   He was a Fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association (AsMA) and was on AsMA’s Task Force on Space Travel which wrote the Medical Guidelines for Space Passengers published in 2001. A native of Missouri, he earned his D.O. at the Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1974 and an M.P.H. at the University of Texas, San Antonio, in 1983. He was a Resident in Aerospace Medicine at the U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine (USAFSAM), Brook AFB, TX, from 1983–1984. 
   After practicing medicine in Cameron, MO, for several years, Dr. Church joined the Air Force and enjoyed a 30-year decorated career as a Flight Surgeon specializing in Aerospace Medicine. He rose to the rank of Colonel and held the position of Commander of USAFSAM in San Antonio, TX, from 1996–1998.  Before retiring, he deployed to Balad Air Base, Iraq, in 2004. During his career, he held a variety of positions. He was Chief of Aerospace Medicine at Hahn Air Base in West Germany from 1984–1987, then Chief of Flight Medicine at the Aeromedical Consultation Service, School of Aerospace Medicine, from 1987–1990. In 1990, he became Major Command Chief Flight Surgeon at Randolph AFB, TX. In 1992, he moved to USAFSAM as Director of Aerospace Medicine Residency. In 1994, he became Chairman of the Department of Aerospace Medicine and Director of the International Student Program. He became Commander and Dean in 1996. From 1998 to 2003, he was also an Assistant Professor in Preventive Medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD. From 2003–2006, he was Chief of Flight Medicine at the 96th Aerospace Medicine Squadron, Eglin AFB, FL. 
   Dr. Church retired from the military in September 2006. He held a National Defense Service Medal with 1 oak leaf cluster, a Joint Meritorious Unit Award, an Air Force Organizational Excellence Award, an Iraq Campaign Ribbon, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.