On June 3, 2012, John (Dave) Fansler, former SURVICE employee and long-time aircraft survivability practitioner and consultant, passed away. He was 86 years old.
Dave’s work in survivability and crashworthiness influenced most of the major combat aircraft developed during the last 50 years. After serving on Army active duty during World War II (including participating in the historic D-Day beach invasion), Dave went on to work as an airframe designer at the Martin Company; as a helicopter vulnerability and crashworthiness expert at Sikorsky Aircraft for 25 years; and as SURVICE’s first full-time employee, where he spent several years helping company founder Jim Foulk establish a survivability/vulnerability business. Dave continued to work as a consultant to SURVICE, Sikorsky, and the Institute for Defense Analyses on various helicopter crashworthiness projects until shortly before his death.
In remembering his long-time coworker and friend, SURVICE Manager Ron Dexter said, “The passion that drove Dave has driven many of my career actions, and will continue to do so. I can still hear his voice encouraging me to do what is right for the ultimate purpose of the survivability discipline—protecting our country and the brave men and women who risk their lives to keep our country free.”