Lt. Colonel Melvin “Buster” M. Dobson USAF (Retired)
Col. Melvin M. Dobson, 99, went to be with the Lord on 28 December 2017, after a prolonged battle with Alzheimer’s disease. An exemplary member of ‘The Greatest Generation,’ Col. Dobson was born 10 November 1918 in Gordon County to Walter and Maggie Dobson. Excluding deployment and stationing, Col. Dobson was a lifelong citizen of Calhoun and Gordon County.
After joining the Army Air Corps (prior to the formation of the USAF), Col. Dobson began a lifetime of service to his fellow citizens and Country. Col. Dobson was a decorated pilot, flying various bombers on humanitarian missions in both the European and North African theaters, post WWII. Among his many notable and cherished accomplishments was his flying in over 50 missions with ‘The Berlin Airlift’, before becoming a pilot with, and member of, SAC (Strategic Air Command). Col. Dobson was also a flight instructor, teaching his skills to hundreds of US and Allied pilots. Col. Dobson was so committed to his work and Country that upon his retirement, he went on to continue his passion and service through many more years in Civil Service, instructing pilots at Naval Air Station - Dobbins AFB.
While stationed in Napoli, Italy, Col. Dobson met and later married his wife, Domenica “Mimma” Grande Dobson. Col. and Mrs. Dobson were married in 1947, and remained so for 52 years, until her death in 2000.
Col. Dobson had many interests and hobbies which included, but were certainly not limited to, helping others, repairing things, and electronics; in fact, he wired the first home in Gordon County for residential electric service. He enjoyed nature (birds, in particular), farming, driving, general ‘tinkering’, and much more. Col. Dobson lived a full and rewarding life, all the way up to the end. He always had a contagious zest for life and the pleasures of nature’s beauty.
Col. Dobson was preceded in death by his wife, Domenica “Mimma” and his parents Walter and Maggie Dobson. He is survived by his five children; Johnnie Dobson and wife Penny, of Rome, GA; Steve Dobson of Duluth, GA; David Dobson and wife Virginia Fox, of Culpeper, VA; Diane Dobson and husband James Spohrer, of Santa Clara, CA; and Laura Dobson, of Atlanta, GA. Grandchildren; Patrick Dobson (who was also his Primary Caregiver), Adam Spohrer, and Steven Spohrer.
Burial services for Col. Dobson were held on 31 December 2017 at Harmony Cemetery. A USAF Color-guard served as pall bearers, also sending him off with full military honors, including Taps, 21-gun salute, and Flag Presentation. Several local pilots from T.B.D Airport also provided a ‘flyover’ for his service.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in his honor to the Alzheimer’s Association (GA chapter), U.S.O., St. Jude, or any other reputable cause, national or local, that he would appreciate.
You may leave the Dobson family online condolences at www.thomasfuneralhomecalhoun.com
Thomas Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements for Lt. Col. Melvin “Buster” M. Dobson.