On Saturday, December 18, 2021, David Allen Rea, age 69, passed away peacefully at his home in China Grove, Texas after several years of health struggles. David was born May 28, 1952, in Amarillo to Claude Elmer Rea Jr., and Elvira Merle (Henry) Rea. David was raised on a farm in Canyon, Texas, from a young age. After he graduated from high school, he joined the United States Air Force, where he proudly served 26 years, retiring as a CMSgt. He completed all the professional military education and was assigned to several headquarters’ positions during his career. His AF assignments included Osan AB, Korea; Little Rock AFB, AR; Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ; Langley AFB, VA, Eielson AFB, AK; Anchorage AFB, AK; Keesler AFB, MS and his last assignment was Brooks AFB, TX, where he held the position of Chief Enlisted Manager Medical Material. Upon retirement, he acquired a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University-Kingsville. He served as a panel chairman on the Appraisal Review Board in Bexar County for 6 years. He met his loving wife, Ruth at Eielson AFB, AK. The two shared a union of almost 37 years of marriage and chose not to have children as two full-time military members. However, they created many wonderful memories that will be cherished forever. Fortunately, David and Ruth transferred concurrently from one location to another. In David’s spare time, he and his wife enjoyed gardening and spending time on their few acres in China Grove, TX. He is preceded in death by his parents, and brothers Delbert and Danny. He is survived by his beloved wife, Ruth Ellen Rea, brother: Darrell (June); sister: Gayle, and many nieces and nephews, great-nieces and nephews, and numerous other close neighbors and friends. The family is more than grateful to the outstanding medical staff at San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC), especially Dr. Bevans and the great support from the Veteran’s Administration (VA). Memorial or charitable donations may be made to the USO (United Service Organizations), the Animal Defense League of Texas, or a charity of your choice.

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  1. Chief was an inspiration for me and will forever be grateful for his support. God bless him and may he rest in peace. Love and prayers to his family and friends.

  2. Deepest Condolences to Ruth. Dave was a wonderful friend and great Career Field Manager/Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Air Force Medical Materiel airmen that he served so faithfully. May he rest in peace.

  3. Chief Rea was an awesome person who loved his job, cared for the troops and was dedicated to our great country. He unselfishly served and I will always be grateful for having served and being mentored by his leadership. Rest in peace Chief.

  4. David Rea was quietly a blessing to all he met. His smile, generous spirit and sincerity made him a fast friend. His love for his wife, kindness to others and integrity were examples to me, personally. Even when he was weak, his hair was impeccably kept, his face clean-shaven. I miss his presence, but trust he’s still looking out for others even now. (I’ll also miss the amazing tomatoes that he and Ruth graciously shared from their garden.) Our condolences Ruth- We feel a small degree of your loss and share your sorrow for our lost friend.

  5. I was never fortunate to be assigned to work with David in the AF, I was retired before we met. David was a dear friend for many years. He was one of the dedicated persons I’ve known in my military career. His loyalty to his country, his job, his family & friends was always his top priority. David & Ruth was a very loving couple always willing to help any one in need. David RIP for you have enhanced the life of everyone you met by your presents. David be assured we are here for Ruth if she needs us.

  6. Dennis R. Downing, Lt Col, USAF, Retired Heartfelt condolences to Ruth. Served with Dave at Davis-Monthan in the late 1970s, and he was an inspiration to our logistics team. You sensed great things were in store for Dave…he never let us down! Rest in peace, Dave. You’re a credit to your family, your country, and the Air Foce.

  7. Uncle David, we miss you dearly. We remember all the visits, your smiling face and love for our kids. You and Aunt Ruth have always been amazing to us. Thank you for your service to our country. Reading all these wonderful messages it is not doubt you have touched many. Aunt Ruth we love you!!

  8. Met David in the fourth grade in Canyon, became good friends all through school and joined the Air Force together. We were both squad leaders in basic . I have a lot of great memories of growing up as friends in Canyon. My prayers to Ruth and other family. A great friend and a great guy.

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