Joseph  Dempsey                Inducted 2019 - Class of 1961

Joseph Dempsey enlisted in the United States Air Force after graduating from Woodward High School in 1961 and has spent his entire adult life in service to this Great Country. Joseph has lived all over the world and has only been back to Toledo for family emergencies and short visits. Joseph didn't get much of a chance to participate in after school activities while attending Woodward, as he worked for the last blacksmith in the greater Toledo area and there were a lot of horses to take care of.

Joseph Dempsey came from a military family whose very history was devoted to service. His stepfather served in WWI, his uncles and brother-in-law were WWII, Joseph and his brother were Vietnam, Joseph and his nephews served in Desert Shield/Storm, and Joseph's son served in the Marine Corps. With all the Veterans in his family, Joseph lists Mr. Wilusz and Mr. Sloan as two Woodward teachers who helped to mold and reinforce his values based upon personal discipline. Both of them, in their individual ways, pointed him down the right path. Further, Joseph recalls that

he will always be grateful to them and Woodward High School for some great times, a solid education, and memories.

Joseph's military decorations include five Meritorious Service Medals, four Air Force Commendation Medals, ten Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards (two with V for valor). He served as a Missile Combat Crewmember during the Cuban Missile Crisis, served as an advisor to the Vietnamese Air Force at Tan Son Nhut AB, he was deployed from Wright Patterson AB to Taegu AB Korea during the Pueblo Crisis. His next assignment was to Cam Ly AFLD, Vietnam where he supported special air and ground operations. Joseph's Civilian Decorations include 18 years of continuous outstanding evaluations, a US Government Service Special Act for construction of a multi-million-dollar power plant and an Air Force Exemplary Service Award. Joseph's Air Force career was absolutely stunning, and he is currently serving as the Air Force Civil Service Technical Director/Deputy Squadron Commander for Civil Engineering. In his spare time Joseph supports the Vietnam Veterans and Wounded Warrior Program.

Of all Chief Master Sergeant Dempsey's achievements, the most significant of these is his marriage of almost 57 years to Sandra (Robinson) Dempsey. Sandy, the Chief's better half, always held down the home front in all regards, from taking care of their son and daughter to house maintenance and every day duties. She was the glue that remained strong, supportive, and always ready for the ever changing atmosphere that military life demanded.

©2020 Woodward Alumni Hall of Fame

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