Albert J. (Jack) Avant


Albert J. (Jack) Avant, 88, of San Antonio, died Monday, March 24, 2014.

Funeral services were held Thursday, March 27, at 10 a.m. at Bethany Lutheran Church with the Rev. Elliot Pancoast officiating. Visitation was held beforehand.

Interment followed at Greenwood Cemetery.

Arrangements were under the direction of Fredericksburg Funeral Home.

Avant was born Sept. 22, 1925, in Atascosa, the son of George Avant and Virginia Thigpen Avant. He married Lorene Dietrich on May 9, 1948, at Bethany Lutheran Church and she survives.

 After graduating from Somerset High School at the age of 15, Avant began working for the War Department San Antonio Arsenal the next year.

He enlisted in the Army Air Corps on July 20, 1943, and served until Oct. 31, 1945.

Afterwards, he returned to Kelly Field to work as an airplane mechanic for the civil service. Working his way up throughout his long 40-year career, he eventually retired as a jet engine specialist in F106’s.

During the Korean Conflict, he was recalled to duty on July 9, 1951, and served in Korea as a spotter pilot with the 7147th Tactical Control Group (Mosquitoes) until his release on Dec. 9, 1952.

Over the years, he received a number of awards and citations for his service.

As a private pilot, Avant enjoyed many years of stunt flying and re-building antique airplanes until he was forced to stop flying in his late-70’s due to failing eyesight. 

In addition to his wife, Avant is survived by three sons, one daughter, including Anthony (Wayne) Avant and his wife, Donna Christoferson, of Ovilla; Charles Avant, San Antonio; Virginia (Ginny) and Jeffrey Rauth, Dickinson, and Joanne Avant and her husband, David Denney, of Driftwood.

Survivors also include six grandchildren, four great-grandchildren, and a sister, Vivian Avant of Waterloo, N.Y.

Avant was preceded in death by his parents, as well as a daughter, Susan Avant, who died in infancy; two brothers, Stanley Avant and Fred Avant, and a sister, Patricia Avant Schoenmaker.

Memorials may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, Bethany Lutheran Church or the charity of choice.

Pallbearers included Mace Moore, Daniel Rauth, Brian Maenius, Lance Feuge, Derrick Dietrich and Gerald Feuge.

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