Col. Joe B. Swift, left, Brig. Gen. Ricky D. Gibbs, center, and Maj. John Gallatin Kearby, right.

Hall of Honor adds distinguished cadets

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Col. Joe B. Swift, top, Brig. Gen. Ricky D. Gibbs, center, and Maj. John Gallatin Kearby are the 2011 inductees into the Military Science Hall of Honor. Swift earned a B.B.A. degree in 1963 as a distinguished military graduate. He was selected to shoot with the All-Army team and was placed in charge of rifle and pistol training activities while stationed in Korea and Japan. After receiving his flying license, he served two tours of duty in Vietnam as a reconnaissance pilot and on administrative flight missions. Upon receiving a master’s degree in industrial psychology, he became an operations officer and later a helicopter battalion training officer. Swift retired from the Army in 1989 and later worked for Bell Helicopter as a logistics engineer. Gibbs received a B.A. degree in 1982. He also earned master’s degrees from Troy State University and the U.S. Army War College. He served in Germany prior to being named chief of personnel and training for the combat training center at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. He later served as chief of the Army Initiatives Group. Following two tours of duty in Iraq, he became chief of staff for the 1st Infantry Division in 2008. Among his awards are the Bronze Star Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal. Kearby received an associate degree in 1925 from North Texas Agricultural College (now UT Arlington). He later graduated from Southern Methodist University and became a teacher. He served in the Army Air Corps from 1941 to 1943 and played a vital role in developing the high-altitude pressure suit. His work pioneered the spacesuits used by today’s astronauts. Both John Kearby and his brother, Neel, were killed in separate incidents during World War II while on flying missions over the Pacific Ocean.

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