Retired Army Col. Virgil Richard Kottsick passed away at his home in Lillian, Ala., on Aug. 26, 2012. He was 84 years old.
His 40-year military career included command of an engineer company, service during the Berlin Crisis, his transition to army aviation, serving as Commandant of the North Dakota National Guard Officer Candidate School, and retiring as the Chief Flight Safety Officer for the state.
Virgil owned and operated the Turtle Mountain Lodge at Lake Metigoshe, N.D., and also operated Aquatic Weed Harvester. In Alabama, he was Maintenance Director for Brett-Robinson Gulf Corporation for 8 years. In retirement, he volunteered at the Pensacola VA Hospital and served at Fairfield Presbyterian Church.
Virgil was a loving husband and father, loyal friend, and caring grandfather. He was a good humored, kind and modest man quick with a joke and capable of solving any problem he confronted. He had a life-long passion of flying. Virgil loved visits from family, friends and his grandchildren.
Virgil is survived by: his loving wife of 39 years, Sherri; his children, Kimberlee Jiskra (Keith), of Foley, Ala., Kandice Kay Holt (Tim), of Grafton, N.D., Kristine Alicia Kortgaard (Lonnie), of Bottineau, N.D., Kori Veralyn Nestibo (Darcy), of Goodlands, Manitoba, Sean Thomas Carney (Shonda), of Fairhope, Ala., and James Mitchell Kottsick, of Lillian, Ala; his brother, Quentin Kottsick (Carol), of Ulen, Minn.; sisters, Norma Johnson and Ruth Weber, both of Minot, N.D., Jacqueline King (Donald), of Fargo, N.D.; his 14 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews, each of whom he loved very much.
He was predeceased by his parents, George and Cora Kottsick; his first wife, Mae Elizabeth King; his sisters, Viola Graff, Evelyn Zick, and Grace Otto; and his brother, Robert Kottsick.
Virgil's memorial service was Sept. 5, 2012, at 11:30 a.m. at the Fairfield Presbyterian Church in Pensacola, Fla., followed by burial, with full military honors, at Fort Barrancas National Cemetery, Pensacola.
Virgil's life was best defined by the award given the Honor Candidate at the North Dakota Officer Candidate School several years after his tenure as Commandant had ended. The Virgil R. Kottsick Award was inscribed "For Exceptional Loyalty, Honor, and Dedication to Duty."
Condolences may be offered at www.oaklawnfunerals.com.
(Oak Lawn Funeral Home, Pensacola)