Colonel Ferkes spent over 30 years in the Air Force, 21 of them in Special Operations serving in a variety of Air Force and Joint command, staff and operational positions. Following retirement, he worked as a consultant to Lockheed-Martin, Jacob Sverdrup, and WinTec on various Special Operations projects.
Born in Fall River Massachusetts, Nov 6, 1945, but calling Noblesvillege, Armed Forces Staff College, and Squadron Officers School. He was commissioned through Officer Training School in March 1969 and attended undergraduate pilot training at Reese Air Force Base, Texas.
After assignments to several staff and operational positions, Col Ferkes was assigned to the 8th Special Operations Squadron at Hurlburt Field in June 1978. In 1980, Col Ferkes flew in operation “Eagle Claw” (Desert One), the Iran hostage rescue mission. Over the next 20 years, Colonel Ferkes served with JSOC, AFSOC and SOCOM in many different key operational and staff roles, playing an integral part in Special Operations history.
Col Ferkes is a command pilot with over 5200 hours in eight types of aircraft, including over 650 combat hours. His awards and decorations include the Silver Star, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Defense Meritorious Service Medal (1OLC), Meritorious Service Medal (2OLC), and Air Medal (8OLC) and numerous service and campaign medals.
Col Ferkes was inducted into the Air Commando Hall of Fame in 2011 and the Indiana Military Veterans Hall of Fame in 2017.
He has been involved with the Special Operations Warrior Foundation since its inception in 1980 and has served on the Board of Directors since 2006.