Anton “Tony” VanRisswick, 89, died Aug. 11, 2008, in Vancouver.
The son of Willian and Angeline (Pruys) VanRisswick, he was born Oct. 11, 1917, in Havre, Mont. He attended grade school in Montana. He grew up a hardworking farm boy, but all of his life he wanted to fly an airplane. He saved enough money for a biplane ride at a local fair. At only 13, he left home, gave up a high school education for farm work and a stint with the Civilian Conservation Corps, and later a job with a farm equipment dealer. At age 18, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and signed up for aviation cadet training. Despite his lack of high school education, he learned navigation complexities and was soon figuring navigation problems on a slide rule. In 1943, he graduated as a second lieutenant fighter pilot on his way to battlefields in Europe. He served with the Ninth Air Force during World War II. At age 27, he was released from active duty. He later enlisted in the National Guard so he could continue to fly. He checked out on helicopters, but a highlight of this time was flying his first jet planes. In 1948 he married Jean Likulesky of Rudyard, Mont., to whom he was married for 60 years. After his military service, he returned to Montana and found a job with the Montana highway Patrol, where he was still able to fly as a reserve with the National Guard. After almost nine years as a patrolman, in 1958 he went to work for the Bureau of Indian Affairs as a criminal investigator, handling major crimes. He retired from the BIA after 20 years of service. Following retirement, he and his wife moved to Surfside more than 29 years ago where Mr. VanRisswick loved to play golf. He also enjoyed driving fast cars, but he never lost his love or airplanes. He was a member of St. Mary’s Church in Seaview. In addition to his wife, survivors include his daughters, Cathy Lineman of Washougal and Patti Janisch of Wenatchee, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. A memorial mass was held on Aug. 16 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Seaview. Final interment will be at Willamette National Cemetery.