Robert O. Beringer celebrates being 100

After the war Beringer earned an MS in geology and took a job as a petroleum geologist.

On Oct 6th, long-time Ventura resident Ret. Air Force Colonel Robert O. Beringer celebrated his 100th birthday with friends and family in attendance. Beringer lives at the Ventura Townehouse.

Born in Wisconsin as one of 8 siblings Mr. Beringer is looking back on a long, fulfilled life of military duty, including a World War II mission as a navigator with “Ken’s Men”, sobriquet for the 43rd Bomb Group, stationed on the small island of Owi off northwest mainland New Guinea. He received the Air Medal and three oak leaf clusters for combat and in 1947, transferred to the active Reserve.

After the war Beringer earned an MS in geology and took a job as a petroleum geologist with Conoco. A company field trip to the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley and Zuni assured him that this is the part of the US where he belonged and he became a lifelong collector of Native American bolo ties and belt buckles and western art.  

 His work took him through the oil patch of Mississippi, Louisiana, offshore Gulf of Mexico, Texas Colorado, Utah, Arizona and finally to California, onshore and offshore.  Conoco created a consortium of oil companies to join in acquiring data for evaluating the hydrocarbon potential of the Santa Barbara Channel. Critical to achieving this goal was a coring program initiated and operated by Conoco. Beringer jumped at the opportunity to supervise coring operations and moved to Ventura in 1966.

After Conoco transferred Beringer to California, he joined the 9378th Air Reserve Squadron , training monthly at the Santa Barbara armory. In 1969, he was appointed Commander and promoted to Colonel in 1970. The Air Force, phasing out ARD units, merged the 9378th ARS with the 0339th ARS in Los Angeles. Beringer was appointed Commander of the 9339th ARS and in 1975 retired after 33 years of active and reserve duty, retiring from Conoco in 1985. His retirement goal was to acquire a better understanding of world history and geology. Pursuing the objective, he visited over 26 counties, the Galapagos Islands, Machu Picchu, Stonehedge, Pompeii, Egypt, Serengeti, the Silk Road and Switzerland and many states of the US.

As a token to the immensely positive influence Robert Beringer had on others during his long life, in addition to his family and local friends,  a group of former colleagues, many of them he had taken under his wings when they were just starting out in their careers, flew out to California from all over the US to celebrate this special milestone with him, stating that it had been 30/40 years since they saw him last but they never forgot the kindness, encouragement and wisdom he represented!

During his birthday celebration Ret. Colonel Robert O. Beringer was represented with a certificate declaring him an honorary member of the United States Space Force!

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