In the early morning of Thursday, March 4, our beloved A-4 Skyhawk pilot, Michael S. Jindra, was called to fly high into the heavens. He was hoping to make it home to Georgetown, but God had another destination in mind that day. He died peacefully, surrounded by family in Dallas.
Mike was born to Roy and Dorothy Jindra on November 22, 1949, in Tyler, Texas, but spent all of his childhood in San Antonio. It was there that he found his love of scouting, ranching, and met his lifelong friends. After graduating from Edison High School in 1967, where he was member of the JROTC, Mike attended Rice University, where he developed a love-hate relationship with organic chemistry and higher-level mathematics, but was able to conquer both, obtaining his BA in Chemistry in 1972. While at Rice, Mike was a founding member of the Rice soccer team, received the Marine Corps Commandant’s Trophy (a prestigious honor bestowed annually upon the nation’s top graduate from the Corps’ Officer Candidate School), and met the love of his life, Ann Fisher, on a blind date.
After marrying in 1972, Mike and Ann navigated a multitude of Marine Corps duty stations while Mike completed flight school and joined his first squadron, flying the A-4 Skyhawk with the callsign of ‘Buzzard’. It was in these first few years of marriage that their daughter Elizabeth and son, Brian were born.
In 1980, Mike transitioned to the US Army and helped to standup the Chemical Corps where he would spend the next 19 years, developing the Corps’ strategic growth while mentoring its future leaders. The US Army afforded him opportunities in leadership and professional development, for which he was always most appreciative. Mike’s assignments spanned the United States, Germany, Belgium, and a multitude of other international locations. Although holding multiple command positions and serving as NATO’s lead chemical officer during Operation Desert Storm, it was Mike’s love of and devotion to his soldiers, and their personal and professional success, that was the impetus behind his tireless work ethic.
Retiring in 1999, as a Lieutenant Colonel, Mike entered a new phase of his life, fully immersing himself in the love of his God, country, and his family. Continuing as a deacon and Life Group teacher at First Baptist Georgetown, Mike expanded his spiritual service by joining The Gideons, his newfound brotherhood of faithful servants. Never hesitating in offering up his political opinion when called upon, Mike cherished our country’s democracy and electoral process, and was a steadfast supporter of Williamson County’s elections, serving as a poll worker and elections judge over the course of many years.
Those who best knew Mike always knew that the twinkle in his eye was for his daughter Elizabeth, otherwise known as ‘Lisa’ to her closest family. There wasn’t a mountain that Mike wouldn’t move, or a sea he wouldn’t cross to make sure that Lisa had every opportunity to succeed in life. As for Brian, Mike and his son were near clones of each other. They shared in their Bohemian good looks, stubbornness, love of soccer, competitive nature, and devotion to lifelong learning. Having said that, Mike always liked to point out that the best thing Brian ever did was to marry Julie York, whom he loved like a daughter.
As a grandfather - known as ‘Pappy’ to Sofie, Jackson, and Logan – Mike was their most loyal fan. Whether it was championing their scholastic achievements or successes in cheer, baseball or soccer, Pappy was rooting them on, albeit through live stream during the last year!
With Ann, his best friend and soulmate, they traveled the world together on cruises and flights to far off destinations, and always found solace and rejuvenation at their ‘home away from home’ in Maui. Together they shared in the joy of being grandparents and getting to spend time with their extended family, to include their church and travel friends.
Indeed, his life was filled with many blessings. Through the trials and tribulations of the last couple of years, he stayed strong in his faith and had an unshakeable love for God, country, his family, and friends. He was an amazing son, husband, father, and Pappy and will be missed dearly, not to mention his quick wit and ability to provide a timely ‘pun’ to bring a smile to your face.
Left to cherish his memory are: wife, Ann of Georgetown, daughter, Elizabeth of Georgetown, and his son, Brian and his wife, Julie and their children, Sofie, Jackson, and Logan, all of Frisco, as well as brothers and sisters-in law, cousins, nieces, and nephews.
Mike was preceded in death by his parents, Roy and Dorothy Jindra.
Visitation will be held on Thursday, March 11, from 6-8pm at Ramsey Funeral Home. Funeral services will take place on Friday, March 12, at 11am at First Baptist Georgetown. A private interment will take place on Wednesday, March 17, at Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery.
Deacons of First Baptist Georgetown will serve as Honorary Pallbearers.
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