Since 1999, the Air Force Communications and Information Hall of fame has recognized the achievements of past military leaders and civil servants who have laid the foundation that supports today's dominant, modern Air Force. Lt. Gen. Tom Hobbins, Air Force Deputy Chief of Staff for Warfighting Integration, inducted Lt. Gen. (retired) John S. Fairfield
and the late Maj. Gen. John Paul Hyde
into the Hall of Fame during a ceremony and dinner April 15 at Andrews AFB, Md.
Maj. Gen. John Paul Hyde
A career-long communicator, General Hyde was called to active duty after graduating from the University of Cincinnati and receiving his commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps in 1957. After attending the basic communications officer course at Scott AFB, he was assigned as wire and radio communications staff officer at Headquarters Washington Air Defense Sector, at Fort Lee, Va. Early on, General Hyde was associated with several innovations. These included developing and fielding seismic systems for detecting underground nuclear tests, and developing the first 10-year plan for future defense communications systems. Much of what he did helped lead the Air Force to digitization and the greater reliance on communications satellites seen today. Some later assignments included commander of the 1964th Communications Group in Vietnam, and the 1974th Communications Group in Thailand. He also served with the Defense Communications Agency and the Tactical Communications Area within AFCC, and as deputy chief of staff for communications and electronics for Tactical Air Command. His final assignment was as deputy director for defense-wide command, control and communications systems, Organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. General Hyde retired April 1, 1988 and died in January 1996.
Lt. Gen. (retired) John S. Fairfield
General Fairfield retired after serving in the Air Force for more than 34 years. A graduate of Officer Training School at Lackland AFB, Texas, in December 1962, he became a navigator, bombardier and command pilot. He flew 180 F-4 combat missions in Vietnam. Later, his career expanded to include the vast communications and information career field. He commanded Air Force Communications Command from 1990-1993. Though he was new to the communications environment, he adapted to its needs and capabilities. He personally directed the AFCC battle staff in support of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Simultaneously, he handled the many tasks associated with the divestiture of missions and manpower as AFCC became a field operating agency in 1991. His achievements endeared him to the troops under his command as the enlisted corps chose General Fairfield as the final recipient of AFCC's Order of the Sword in 1993. He led the comm community in the mid 1990s as Air Force deputy chief of staff, command, control, communications and computers, as well as deputy chief of staff, communications and information. In this capacity, he was responsible for three field operating agencies: Air Force Communications Agency, Air Force Pentagon Communications Agency, and Air Force Frequency Management Agency.