In Memory of




Obituary for Dale Lamoine Ringwald

Dale Lamoine Ringwald died at 3:50 pm on February 20, 2022, in Temple, Texas, at the age of 99. He had been living in the William R. Courtney Texas State Veterans Home, where he was honored with a flag and final salute.

A memorial service will be held at 10:00 a.m. Monday, April 11, 2022 at the Strode Funeral Home Chapel in Stillwater, Oklahoma followed by a graveside service with full military honors, at Sunset Memorial Gardens, where his ashes will be interred next to his wife, Mrs. Betty Ringwald. His name is on the Payne County War Veterans Memorial at Sunset Memorial Gardens in Stillwater.

Mr. Ringwald was born at his maternal grandparents’ farm on Euchee Creek near Pemeta, Oklahoma, between Cushing and Drumright, on Friday, October 13, 1922. His paternal grandparents had come to homestead in the area near Perkins in 1889, and they built a log cabin on the Cimarron River.

Dale grew up the 2nd eldest in a family of 8 children during the Dust Bowl and the Depression of the 1930s, and they were often forced to relocate to make ends meet. His mother, Eva Emmeline Wilson, and his father, John William Weaver Ringwald, farmed land in Oklahoma and Kansas and were teachers in local schools. Dale began playing the harmonica as a child—something that would become a lifelong cherished skill. He graduated from Ripley High School in 1939, and then from Murray State School of Agriculture in Tishomingo in 1941.

On March 23, 1942, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps Reserve as a private, the first step in a military career that would include 29 years of service. In WWII he flew over 66 missions on B-26 Marauders as a bombardier navigator, and was awarded the Air Medal with oak leaf clusters. On February 7, 1944, he was presented the Distinguished Flying Cross by Colonel Joe Kelly.

Dale married Betty Ruth Van Buskirk on September 16, 1945, in Stillwater, OK. After living in Odessa, Midland, and Lubbock, the young couple returned to Oklahoma A&M in Stillwater where Dale studied agronomy while Betty studied music education. Dale graduated in 1948 and was recalled to active service in the Air Force. This would take their small family to various bases in Texas, New Jersey, California, Oklahoma, and Alabama, where he was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for service with the 95th Bomb Wing. Dale’s crew also spent six months in Guam in 1955. In 1957 he completed B-52 upgrading school as a radar navigator bombardier, but left crew duty in 1958 and became a target intelligence officer.

In 1962, Dale received orders for duty at Albrook Air Force Base, Panama, and would move Betty, and their two children, Gary and Mary Ann, to Central America for 3 years. While in Panama, Dale was again awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal. He flew to nearly every country in Central and South America. Betty and Dale were part of a square-dancing group and took up golfing, and the children had ponies at the base stables.

In 1965, Dale received orders to the Defense Intelligence Agency in the Pentagon as Chief of the Middle-American Branch, and he and Betty bought their first home in Alexandria, VA, two miles from Mount Vernon. In the spring of 1968, he received orders to Vietnam as the director of Intelligence at Pleiku. He received the Bronze Star Medal and the DOD Commendation Medal for service in Vietnam.

Mr. Ringwald officially retired from the Air Force on October 1, 1970, as a lieutenant colonel. He and Betty returned to Oklahoma and bought 15 acres on West 19th Avenue in Stillwater. He accepted a job with Oklahoma Crop Improvement at the University and was presented with The Master Professional Agronomist Award before he retired in 1985.

An avid golfer, Mr. Ringwald proudly hit two holes-in-one. One of them was at the American Cancer Society Scramble tournament in 1991, where he won a 5-day trip to Las Vegas and a 3-day trip to the Tournament of Aces. He was friends with the OSU golf coach Mike Holder, and often the team would come and hit balls on his well-maintained acreage. He and Betty enjoyed their Stillwater retirement years, their First Methodist Church community, and gardening. After over 53 years of marriage and friendship, Betty died in 1999.

Mr. Ringwald married Marion Ely Richardson in 2000, relocating to Kerrville, TX, and then to Temple, TX. They were active in their Oak Park United Methodist Church community and enjoyed 14 years together before Marion died in 2014.

Mr. Ringwald is survived by his sister, Val Ringwald Sims of Stillwater, OK; brother-in-law Garland Terrel of Marble Falls, TX; two sisters-in-law by marriage, Glenna Van Buskirk of Ripley, OK, and Evelyn Van Buskirk of Fort Lupton, CO; son, Gary Ringwald, of Amarillo, TX; daughter and son-in-law, Mary Ann & Dennis Taylor, of Corpus Christi, TX; granddaughter Luna Taylor and partner West Kennerly, of San Diego, CA; grandson Chris Taylor and wife Lisa Taylor, of Las Cruces, NM; 2 great-grandchildren, Makena and Luke; 3 step-children, and many nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews.