1/Lt. Walter J. Konantz
1/Lt. Walter J. Konantz
338th FS - 02 August 1944 - 29 March 1945
Flew 64 missions, 294:40 hours
11 September 1944 Me-109 destroyed (air) S/Meiningen
06 January 1945 Ju-88 destroyed (ground) Giebelstadt
13 January 1945 Me-262 destroyed (air) Giebelstadt
29 January 1945 Me-109 destroyed (air) NE Oldenburg
Walt's dog, Lassie, became the 338th Fighter Squadron mascot.
Passed away on 03 April 2001
|Memories||Walter J. Konantz's Obituary
Walter J. Konantz, 79, of Lamar, passed away Tuesday, April 3, 2001 at Barton County Memorial Emergency Room after a short illness. He was born March 7, 1922 in Lamar, Mo., to Carl F. and Marie M. (Markwick) Konantz, who operated the Konantz Funeral Home from 1926 until 1960.
Walter graduated from the Lamar High School in 1940, attended the University of Missouri for two years then entered the United States Army Air Force in 1943 as an aviation cadet. After graduating from advanced flying school in 1944 he was a fighter pilot in the 55th Fighter Group, 8th Air Force, based in England. He flew 64 combat missions in the P-51 Mustang, shot down enemy aircraft, and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, eleven Air Medals, and three Unit Citations.
He has been a member of the Lamar Airport Board since 1984, a member of the Lamar Methodist Church, member of the Experimental Aircraft Association, member of the OX-5 Aviation Pioneers, a life member of the Antique Airplane Association, member of the 8th Air Force Historical Society, life member and president of the 55th Fighter Group Association, member of the P-51 Mustang Pilots Association, and a member of the F-86 Sabre Pilots Association.
He was married October 20, 1946 to Doris A. Isenmann in Jasper, Mo. He worked three years at the Konantz Funeral Home and recalled to active duty in the Air Force in 1951 and retired as a Major in 1969 with twenty-one years of active duty service in the U.S. Air Force, having served during World War II, Korean Conflict and Vietnam War.
He is survived by his wife, Doris, of the home; a daughter, Deborah Good of Springfield, Mo.; a son, Thomas J. Konantz of Huntsville, Ala.; and four grandsons, Jonathan and Daniel Good of Springfield, Mo., Benjamin and Joshua Konantz of Huntsville, Ala.
He was preceded in death by one grandson, Lt. David T. Good on November 6, 1998; one brother, Harold Konantz; and one sister, Jean Rand.
Publicity photo of (L-R) Walt Konantz and brother Harold Konantz
Lt. Walter J. Konantz (Frank Birtciel)
Lt. Walter J. Konantz and Lassie. Lassie has a wheel fitted to his
broken leg, which was broken when he was hit by a Jeep.
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