Gary ‘Gumby’ West is a retired USAF Colonel. A Combat Veteran, Gary has flown over 130 combat missions in the F-15 and F-16 over the skies of Iraq and Bosnia. Gary currently serves as the Operations Pastor for Chapel Springs Church, based out of Bristow, VA. In addition, Gary serves as the campus pastor to their Stafford, VA satellite congregation. Gary’s military service includes flight, staff, and command assignments around the world.
Gary commanded at the squadron and group level during combat operations. He was appointed the executive officer to the Director of Combat Operations, the Joint Staff, Pentagon, DC. Gary was at the Pentagon on 911, 2001 when terrorists crashed American Airlines Flight 77 into the west end of the building.
Gary’s education includes a Bachelors of Arts from Colorado State University and a Masters Degree in National Security Strategy from the National War College at Ft. McNair, DC. Gary attended USAF Squadron Officers School, USAF Air Command and Staff College, and USAF Air War College in residence. He served as the JCS Chair at the National War College during the final three years of his 26 years of service. Gary is married to Colette of Howard, KS. They have three grown sons and three daughter in laws, who have blessed them with six grandchildren.