Colonel David K. Shuffer was the Commander of the 136th Airlift Wing, Texas Air National Guard, Fort Worth NAS, JRB, Carswell Field, Texas, upon his retirement. He was a Command Pilot with over 6,000 military flying hours, and over 15,000 civilian flying hours.
He was born in Fort Dix, New Jersey, on November 21, 1947; and graduated from Saint Bernard’s High School, Fitchburg, Massachusetts, on June 8, 1965. On June 7, 1969, he graduated from the University of Maryland. On the same day, he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant, and designated a Distinguished Air Force ROTC Graduate.
He entered Undergraduate Pilot Training at Randolph AFB, Texas, on July 12, 1969, and graduated in the top quarter of Class 71-01 on July 18, 1970. His first assignment was a C-141A to the 18th Military Airlift Squadron, 438th Military Airlift Wing, McGuire AFB, New Jersey. With the Military Airlift Command (MAC), he upgraded to Aircraft Commander in minimum time, while still a First Lieutenant. With MAC he flew thirteen missions to Southeast Asia logging 28 hours of combat time. On July 12, 1972, he was promoted to Captain and received a Regular commission in the USAF. On November 14, 1972, he reported to Carswell AFB, Texas, as a B-52D Aircraft Commander with the Strategic Air Command’s 7th Bombardment Wing (HVY). After his initial checkout on October 23, 1973, he pulled one 90 day rotation in Southeast Asia divided between Utapo RT AB, Thailand, and Andersen AFB, Guam. On March 21, 1975, he completed the Central Flight Instructors Course and became one of two Squadron IPUs in the 9th Bombardment Squadron (HVY). On September 19, 1975, he was designated a Top Third Graduate of Squadron Officer School Class 75C. He elected to leave active duty on February 28, 1978, and continue his military service in the Air Force Reserves.
On December 26, 1977, he started employment with American Airlines as a Boeing 727 Second Officer, while on terminal leave from the USAF. During the months of February and March 1978, he was based in New York with American Airlines. From March 1, 1978, to August 12, 1978, he was assigned as a C-141B Aircraft Commander with the 732nd Military Airlift Squadron, 514th Military Airlift Wing, McGuire AFB, New Jersey. On April 1, 1978, he transferred to the Dallas/Fort Worth domicile with American Airlines. On August 13, 1978, he was accepted into the 181st Tactical Airlift Squadron, 136th Tactical Airlift Wing, Texas Air National Guard. In September 1979, he checked out as a First Officer on the Boeing 727, but was not able to hold that position until June 1984. On November 19, 1979, he checked out as a C-130B Aircraft Commander. He successfully completed the Air Command and Staff College correspondence course on April 15, 1981. His promotion to Major on July 12, 1983, was followed shortly by his upgrading to C-130B Instructor Pilot on November 7, 1983. On February 14, 1985, he was designated an Outstanding Graduate of the National Security Management Course. He became Chief of Wing Tactics on April 13, 1985. On December 18, 1985, he was designated a C-130B Flight Evaluator. In May 1987, he checked out as a Captain on the McDonnell Douglas MD-80 with American Airlines. On November 1, 1987, he became Chief of Command and Control, and on September 21, 1988, he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel. On October 1, 1989, he became Chief of Standardization and Evaluation. On October 4, 1990, he was returned to active duty for Operation Desert Shield. On October 9, 1990, he arrived at AI Ain, United Arab Emirates where he became Chief of Current Operations of the 1630th Tactical Airlift Wing (provisional). During Operation Desert Storm, he flew two combat sorties and 25 combat support sorties before returning to Hensley Field, Texas, on April 15, 1991. On June 1, 1992, he became the Director of Operations, Texas Air National Guard, Camp Mabry, Austin, Texas, and was promoted to Colonel on June 7, 1992. On October 28, 1992, he completed his checkout as a Boeing 757/767 Captain with American Airlines. From May 20, 1994, to June 18, 1994, he served as the Battle Staff Director for Operation Provide Promise (Humanitarian Airlift to Bosnia-Herzegovina) at Rhein-Main AB, Germany. He flew one airdrop and three airland missions into Sarajevo; and coordinated and directed the redeployment of Air Reserve Forces to the United States. He became the Vice Commander, 136 Airlift Wing, Hensley Field, Texas, on April 10, 1996. In September 1997, he upgraded to the DC-I0 with American Airlines, and was designated a Check Airman on the DC-I0, December 1, 1997. Colonel Shuffer became the Commander of the 136th Airlift Wing, on March 15, 1998. On January 31, 1999, he was designated a Check Airman on the Boeing 777. Colonel Shuffer’s retirement from the military was effective July 7, 1999.
Colonel Shuffer and his wife, Jane, were married on May 9, 1981, and reside in Colleyville, Texas. They have two children; a son, Steven, and a daughter, Katie.