News Search

First 7th Wing commander passes away

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Emma Anderson
  • 7th Bomb Wing Public Affairs

Maj. Gen. Jerrold P. Allen, first commander of the 7th Bomb Wing, passed away Dec. 13, 2023, in San Antonio, Texas.

 After graduating from the U.S. Air Force Academy, Allen began pilot training. Throughout his career, he excelled in flying various aircraft, including bombers, fighters and cargo aircraft.

From June 1992 to Sept. 1993, Allen was the commander of the 96th Bomb Wing at Dyess Air Force Base. Months later, the 96th BW and 463rd Airlift Wing were replaced by a combined 7th Wing, which he commanded until July 1994. Allen oversaw all B-1B Lancer and C-130 Hercules operations.

During his time as a commander, the base personnel deployed C-130s for airlift missions in Europe and the Persian Gulf while enhancing the B-1Bs for future missions. He facilitated the progression of the B-1B Lancer, which would soon be incorporated into the overall military aviation arsenal.

"Allen was tasked with merging the resources of two separate wings from two separate commands into one, with the move of the 7th from Carswell AFB to Abilene,” said Dr. Dennis Berger, 7th BW historian. “He accomplished this during major Air Force reorganization and the disestablishment of the Strategic Air Command, which had been a part of Dyess since its activation. The seamless execution indicated his abilities to command and the teams he built under him."

During 32 years of active-duty service, he acquired over 4,000 flying hours and flew 250 combat missions in Vietnam. During his time in service, he was awarded several decorations, including the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal and the Legion of Merit.

"Allen provided leadership with strategic brilliance and a commitment to excellence to Airmen at Dyess and around the world," said Col. Seth Spanier, 7th BW commander. "His dedication to improving strategic combat capabilities and long-range planning put Dyess’ Striker mission on course to what we are today. His legacy within the Air Force and its bomber mission will continue to be foundational to our Striker values and why we continue the fight today.”