Flying Tiger Line
Pilots Association

William R. Greentree

In Memoriam

December 3, 1928 - September 4, 2022

The following was received by Bill's son (William J. Greentree) on the day he passed.  The junior Bill was hired as a Flying Tiger pilot in June 1987, as a member of FTLPA and enjoyed a wonderful career at both FTL and FDX.

My father, retired flight engineer Bill Greentree (William R. Greentree), flew west early this morning. He was 3 months to the day short of his 94 birthday. My dad certainly did his part to mess with the retired Tiger Pilots' longevity tables.

My dad was hired by Flying Tigers in September 1956 exactly one month before I was born. Roy McLain told my dad the job would only last 6 months, a year at the outside, then he was guaranteed to be furloughed. He was never furloughed during his 32 years with Tigers and managed to fly every aircraft in the Tiger inventory except the 727 from that time until he retired in 1987. My father was active in union work and with a great deal of support, including our own Al Lopez, helped bring about the merger between the flight engineers and pilots at Tigers. My dad enjoyed his time at Tigers and retired in the wake of the Stephen Wolf era. He was retired from Tigers longer than he worked for them and thoroughly enjoyed retirement in Coeur d'Alene. He is survived by Peggy, his wife of 67 years, his son, retired Tiger/FedEx Captain Bill Greentree, his daughter Debora Clark, a granddaughter, and a great-grandson. 

When submitting a photo of his father (above), Bill's son added the following:

I have a scanned photo of my dad at our house in Fremont as he was getting ready to go out on a trip. I remember he was mad because my mom wanted a photo of him in uniform. No clue as to the exact date but it's the old uniform with black stripes on black. And a pre Zero Haliburton suitcase made of fiberglass. Judging by the decor I'd guess the late 1960s or early 1970's. I have no clue when the uniform was changed as that predates my 1987 hire date by a lot.

The Greentree family has a fantastic sense of humor.  The following was also offered:

Just for fun, I've attached another picture of my dad "killing" his suitcase after he retired. He took 32 years of frustration out on that suitcase and put a spike through it onto the wall of their garage. It's still there. Thanksgiving 1987. I had just come off a Seoul trip with Chuck Westcott and Jack Haggerty on the "new" -73's from Transamerica and was dead tired.

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