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Maj. Gen. Carol Timmons, a female pilot of many firsts, died Sunday

Sen. Chris Coons: 'She was deeply sincere and positive, and she had a unique gift for making those around her feel valued and appreciated.'

Maj. Gen. Carol Timmons, the first female adjutant general of the Delaware National Guard, died Sunday. She was 62.

In her 42 years in the military, she was a lot of firsts. The first female air policeman for the 166h Airlift Wing. One of the first female combat pilots. The first female brigadier general. And then as adjutant general, she led the Delaware Guard from 2017 to 2019, when she retired. 

“Carol’s quiet confidence and determination propelled her to the position of a well-respected leader of leaders,” said Delaware Sen. Chris Coons. “She was deeply sincere and positive, and she had a unique gift for making those around her feel valued and appreciated. “

Timmons will be remembered as a humble leader, officials said.

“She was the epitome of a public servant,” said Gov. John Carney, who appointed her adjutant general. “General Timmons had the respect of her colleagues and Delawareans up and down our state. She was also just a kind, decent person who put others before herself and lived a life of service.”

Since Timmons joined the Delaware Air National Guard in 1977, she had served all over the world across seven deployments in Operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Southern Watch, Joint Guard, Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and Inherent Resolve.

After being awarded her Army pilot wings in 1981 in Fort Rucker, Alabama, and and her Air Force pilot wings in 1985 from Vance Air Force Base in Oklahoma, Timmons clocked 5,000 flight hours on the C-130H “Hercules,” C-141 “Starlifter” and the UH-1 “Huey.” She had more than 400 combat flight hours. 

In her time deployed, Timmons served as commander of the 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron, deputy commander of the 455th Operations Group, and director of Mobility Forces at the United States Air Forces Central Command. 

She also chaired the Delaware National Guard’s Joint Diversity Executive Council, and is a member of the Delaware Aviation’s Hall of Fame.

“May Carol be remembered always as a genuinely humble, good-natured and decent person,” Coons said.

“Our Delaware National Guard Family has lost a true American Hero,” said Maj. Gen. Michael Berry, the Delaware Guard’s current adjutant general. “Maj. Gen. Carol Timmons personified excellence while serving in our profession of arms. 

“She was a true warrior who understood the importance that each service member plays in the defense of our Nation and our way of life. She ensured all members of her team had a voice and always put the welfare of her military family members ahead of her own.”

Timmons is survived by her wife, Lynn.

The cause of her death was not released.

Timmons was hailed across social media Monday.

Moonloop Photography, which has photographed her for the What’s Your Passion series, posted the firm’s photo of her and talked about how “she made a point to include both her service for the Delaware Army National Guard and the Delaware Air National Guard in both helicopters and cargo planes.”

Many people responded with memories of Timmons on the Delaware National Guard’s Facebook page.

“You symbolized what it meant to be an Airman, Guardsman, and a Delawarean,” wrote Anthony Ashcraft. “It was a pleasure to have served alongside you and to have known you.”

“Our son Joe had the honor of marching with her during Camp Colwell,” wrote Di Hub. “They loved seeing her at Camp.”

 “Fly with the Angels Now,” wrote Elaine Riccardi Pinkowski. “Thank You for your service and for Always bringing my Soldier Home Safe. GODSPEED.”

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