JB attended Fillmore School and Butler University. In September 1955 he entered the Naval Aviation Cadet Program and was commissioned an Ensign and received his wings of gold on March 1, 1957. McKamey flew ADs with VA-215 making three WesPac Cruises on the USS Lexington. He then served as an instructor pilot with VT-7and VT-9 at NAS Meridian, Mississippi. He attended safety school at the University of Southern California before joining VA-23 aboard the USS Midway and began flying combat missions in Southeastern Asia in April 1965.
On June 2, 1965, while flying his A-4 on his 21st combat mission, McKamey's aircraft was hit by enemy fire and he was forced to eject over North Vietnam and was immediately captured. JB was released on Feb. 12, 1973 during Operation Homecoming after being held as a prisoner of war for seven Years and eight months. After his return he was attached to VA-125 at Lemoore, Calif. until May 1974.
JB's next assignment was as Commanding Officer of VT-9 at NAS Meridian. His next orders sent him to Mayport, Fla. and the USS Saratoga as ship's Navigator. Captain McKamey, while attached to Naval ROTC program in the University of Jacksonville, received dual BA degrees in communication and English from the University of North Florida. Captain McKamey served as Executive Officer as NAS Key West (Boca Chica) and received a Humanitarian Service Award during the Cuban Mariel boat lift. JB then commanded Mobile Mine Assembly Group in Charleston, S.C. Next McKamey became the Commanding Officer of NAS Pensacola from 1982 to 1984 Captain McKamey's last assignment was on the CNET staff.
McKamey's decorations include the Silver Star (2), Legion of Merit w/V, Bronze Star, w/V and the Purple Heart (2), Meritorious Service Medal w/V (3).
Captain McKamey retired from the United States Navy after 30 years honorable and heroic service to our nation. He returned with honor. After his retirement JB service 7 years as the Public Affairs Officer at NAS Pensacola.
JB was a Duplicate Bridge Life Master and avid NASCAR fan.
He is survived by a loving family, his wife Nancy Hoopes McKamey; three children, Janice and Steven Sowers of Jacksonville, Fla., Jacquelyn Fraley of Austin, Texas and John and Janet McKamey of Gainesville, Fla.; nine grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be at Oak Lawn Funeral Home on 619 New Warrington Road, Pensacola on Wednesday from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Funeral services will be held at the Naval Aviation Memorial Chapel (Base Chapel) on Thursday at 1 p.m., followed by a graveside Barrancas National Cemetery at 2 p.m.
The family would like to thank Dr. Brian Lee, M.D. for his care and kindness for our beloved husband and father.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Covenant Hospice of Pensacola, The Naval Aviation Museum in memory of JB McKamey or a charity of your choice.
Oak Lawn Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Condolences may be offered at www.oaklawnfunerals.com.