Posted 6/06/17 (Tue)
On the afternoon of June 2, 2017, Col. USAF Ret. F.L. “Tony” Svore went to be with his Heavenly Father. This mission, was co-piloted by Tony with the Lord in control.
Col. USAF Ret. F.L. “Tony” Svore, the son of Olaf and Hedvig Clausen Svore, was born on January 6, 1917, in Bismarck, N.D. He grew up in the small town of Alexander in Western Dakota. He was the youngest son of a Lutheran minister that came from Norway, he spent his childhood traveling with his missionary father, visiting many of the American Indian tribes, Mandan, Flathead, Black Foot, Oglala Sioux, Salish, and Kootenai.
In 1940, he graduated from the University of North Dakota with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. As a commander of the ROTC, he was offered a commission by the Navy to Pearl Harbor, of which he declined. He entered into pilot training in 1941 to pursue his passion of flying. He was assigned to the Pacific as a bomber pilot with the 312th Bombing Group flying the twin engine A-20. He flew 88 combat missions specific to MacArthur’s instruction to re-occupy the Philippines in 1945.
As a 28 year old Commander of the 386th Bombing Squadron, Tony was selected to fly the rare four engine B-32 bomber. Tony had the privilege to fly surrender papers from Japan (aboard the USS Missouri on Sept 2, 1945) to President Truman at the White House.
Following WWII, Tony entered into Procurement for the Air Force and the Army. As a buyer and helicopter pilot, he flight tested all new models direct with Igor Sikorsky.
Tony commanded a rescue squadron and flew a total of 56 rescue missions in the Korean War. Notably, he was shot down in North Korea behind enemy lines and commandeered a vehicle occupied by a Korean soldier to drive him to the American line.
Following the Korean War, Tony pursued an MBA and graduated from Harvard in 1958. He became Chief of Air Procurement Europe and was responsible for production contracts of several hundred aircraft, where he remained until retirement in 1968.
During his 28 years of military service, Tony was awarded many honors, including the Distinguished Flying Cross with First Oak Leaf Cluster, the Air Medal with Third Oak Leaf Cluster, the Purple Heart, the Legion of Merit along with 15 bronze stars for various campaigns throughout his career.
Following retirement, Col. Svore enjoyed another 49 vibrant years in Florida, devoting his life to breeding Arabian horses, helping run the family farm, being actively involved in First Lutheran Church and enjoying his family and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Helen Maisner Svore.
He is survived by his daughter, Erika Svor; two grandchildren, Kai Anders Svor-Berstein and Halcyon Britte Svor-Berstein.
A Celebration of Life service was held Monday, June 5, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. at the First Lutheran Church, Pastor Ken Schamens and Pastor John Glover officiated. The family will receive friends one hour prior to service, beginning at 1:00 p.m. Interment was held Wednesday, June 7, 2017, at 1:00 p.m. in the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell with full military honors.
For those who wish, donations may be made to Running Strong for American Indian Youth, indianyouth.org or to a memorial fund in Tony Svore’s memory, to First Lutheran Church, 1801 NW 5th Ave. Gainesville, FL 32603. Please visit his memorial page at www.williamsthomasfuneralhome.com.