Elected in 1982
“For major technical and engineering advancements incorporated in
high-performance bomber and fighter aircraft of the U.S. Air Force.”
BY ALAN C. BROWN
WILLIAM DIETZ, best known as chief engineer of the F-111 and F-16 aircraft programs at General Dynamics, in Fort Worth, Texas, died on July 31, 2006, at the age of 87.
He was born on April 17, 1919, in Chicago, and graduated from the Aeronautical University of Chicago in 1940 with a B.S. in aeronautical engineering.
Bill joined Consolidated Aircraft in San Diego on October 10, 1940, staying with that company, which became General Dynamics, for 53 years until his retirement on October 31, 1993, as vice president and senior technical staff member. He was very proud to have been the first employee to reach 50 years of company service in October 1990.
He progressed through the Engineering Loft and Lines Group at Consolidated Aircraft to the Structural Design Group as a structural designer, working on projects such as the Consolidated PBY Catalina, the twin-engined World War II flying boat (PBY, PB2Y, PB4Y, P4Y, B-24, B-32, and B-36). In 1943 he was promoted to group engineer on the P4Y project and transferred to the newly organized New Orleans Division. After termination of this project, he was promoted to project engineer of the PBY.