Mary Phil Vardiman (1951-Present)       

College Station, TX; Missouri, Illinois, England, California, Texas




Occupation: Air Force & Civil Service

State: Texas, Missouri, Illinois, England, California

# of Children: 1

See below photos for narrative


Mary Phil was born in College Station, TX
19 June 1951
Back Row Left to Right: Grandma Molly Vardiman, Grandpa Frank and Grandma Grace Carter holding Mary Phil
Front Row: Billie, Larry,Steve

Mary Phil in Marfa, Texas 1951-1952

About 1954-1955
Back Row: Grandma Molly Vardiman holding David, Larry holding Ann Lueece, Mary Phil, Billie, Grandpa & Grandma Carter with Steve in front of them

Mess Dress

  • Husband - George Arnold Campbell

  • Husband - Guadalupe "Lupe" Alonso

  • Son - Anthony David Alonso

Marfa, Texas (West Texas) (1949 - 1952)

Christmas 1954 - St. Louis, MO
Back Row: Billie, Louise holding David, Phil holding Ann Lueece, Larry
Front Row: Steve & Mary Phil

Carter Side

Back Row: Aunt Mary, Cousin Carol, Larry, Billie, Phil
Middle Row: Uncle Frank Carter, Grandpa & Grandma Carter, Louise
Front Row: David, Ann Lueece, Mary Phil, Cousin Mary Ann, Steve

1955 Country Squire station wagon
on one of many family trips

St. Louis, Missouri (1952 - 1956)

Billie and Mary Phil

1960 - Mary Phil 9 years old playing piano

Mary Phil Age 9 in 1960
Pacific, Missouri 1959-1968

Columbia Illinois, (1956 - 1959)  & Pacific, Missouri (1959 - 1968)

"Took lessons probably 2-4 years. Mom gave me the piano (she had bought it specifically for me to take lessons, and for her to play on as well), sometime after she moved to the the valley and was married to Dad John. I was settled in San Antonio (stationed there) and brought the piano up. Played for my own pleasure through the 90's. Gave the piano to Tony and Sarah when we moved from Wichita Falls to Sanger 3 years ago, so their girls could take lessons at some point."

My Mom and Dad John were Winter Texans. They lived in their mountain home (Red Feather, Colorado) through the spring and summer and then during fall and winter, went to the valley of Texas, west of Padre Island, Corpus Cristi, just above the Mexican border. They purchased a mobile home in a retirement mobile park that they lived in there. That's the "valley"."

Email from Mary Phil Vardiman Koger 29 July 2010

Back Row:
Steve, Billie, Mary Phil, Larry
Front Row:
Louise, Ann Lueece, David, Phil

GAs, Girl's Auxilary. Ceremony was crowning princesses into the senior GAs. David holding pillow, Mary Phil in middle.

Back Row: Steve, Billie, Phil, Louise, Larry, Mary Phil
Front Row: David & Ann Lueece

"GAs was an organization similar to Girl Scouts except with Christian goals and objectives. (If I'm not mistaken, the boy's equivalent was called RAs. Don't remember what that stood for but Regent's Auxilary pops up in my mind. May not be correct). There was a list of tasks and projects that had to be completed at each age/level. As I remember it was Bible drills, writing and speaking about various religious historical events, some projects related to the church such as helping clean or helping with the lower grade Sunday School activities. When you completed the levels and were approximately 13 or 14 generally, you were crowned princess or queen (I can't remember which) in a ceremony in front of the church congregation. You had pages (David) who carried each girl's crown during the ceremony on a pillow. Don't remember who the girl is, but I think she carried a little white Bible for the ceremony. Not Ann Lueece because she was also one of the girls being recognized in the same ceremony for completing her level/age requirements."

Email from Mary Phil Vardiman Koger sent 29 July 2010

1965 - Larry & Mary Phil

~1966 - Pacific, Missouri
Ann Lueece on left, David sitting on wall, Mary Phil on right with dog in her lap



"The structures in the back were a 1 car detached garage in Pacific, Missouri and a bird bath. Big dog is Brownie, our family dog. The beagles are littermates that Dad got me for my 16th birthday. Put them in a plastic laundry basket in Ann Lueece's and my room to surprise me morning of birthday. They got out and pooped all over our room. Dad built a work shed and concrete run with 8' fence to keep them in. There was a tree beside the fence. The dogs would climb the fence, get out on the limb of the tree and jump down on the other side of the fence. They'd run for hours hunting and come back exhausted. Never could keep them locked up. Don't remember their names. One was killed (hit by car) chasing a scent across the highway. Dad didn't believe much in pets that didn't have a working purpose. The only reason we had Brownie was that she was to help with herding the livestock when we lived on the farm in Illinois. She was not allowed in the house. We had cats, ducks (ended up trying to eat the ducks but Daddy fed them bad food and we couldn't eat), chickens, and one other dog (Sandy a lab I think that got bitten by a raccoon and died). Daddy wasn't great at vaccinating, so often the animals died of various preventable diseases. We had a graveyard in the back yard where it seems we buried an awful lot of animals and put popsicle stick grave markers for them."

Email from Mary Phil Vardiman Koger sent 29 July 2010

1966 - Steve and Mary Phil at
Daytona Beach

1966 - Anne Lueece and Mary Phil at
Daytona Beach

Mary Phil

"Daytona Beach was one of the family trips that we took. Dad flew in to Miami while we drove down from Pacific to meet him. We stayed in a rough cabin in an orange grove somewhere outside of Miami and then when we drove back we went to Daytona Beach and several other locations along the way. Not sure but I think that was the last family trip before Daddy passed away. We also took a family trip the summer after Daddy died (Mary Phil, turned 17 in June 1968). Mom drove us all over the South visiting some of the same places we had gone on trips to with Daddy. During that trip we went to Biloxi which had similar beaches. We visited Chuck (Bill Vardiman's brother, Billie's brother-in-law) in Biloxi because he was stationed there. But because Steven is in the picture, I'm pretty sure it's the Daytona Beach/Miami trip since I don't think Steven went on the Biloxi trip after Daddy died."

Cape Girardeau, MO (1968)

"Dad died Feb 1968. Mom moved us to the Cape (Cape Girardeau, M0) in a rental house for the summer while she completed her teaching certification renewal and then moved us permanently at the beginning of the 1968 school year so she could teach in the Cape. Daddy left no life insurance and had no pension (although Ralston Purina felt badly about that and tried to help out a little bit), so Mom had to earn a living quickly. Steve stayed at the old house in Pacific until it sold, Billie and Larry were already away from home (college, married) while David, Ann Lueece, and me moved with Mom to the Cape. That was my senior year in high school. Hated the move and graduated early (Dec) so I could get out of the Cape. Ann Lueece and David adjusted a little better."

Email from Mary Phil Vardiman Koger sent 29 July 2010

1973 - Mary Phil

David and Mary Phil

Stationed in England about 1973-1978

"Mary enlisted in the Air Force November of 1972, completed Basic Training at Lackland AFB, and served as a Supply Technician at Randolph AFB and RAF Alconbury, England until May of 1978."

Bio from Mary Phil Vardiman Koger 29 July 2010

"Colorado School of Mines required all U.S. citizens who were enrolled at Mines to go through ROTC training. Friday’s were dress uniform days and Mom took the opportunity to catch a picture of Mary home on leave and I together. My experience with ROTC included learning how to blow up bridges and other structures with explosives and then the 2nd semester to build them."

Email from David Vardiman 22 June 2010

Lupe and Mary Phil Alonso stationed in England and expecting their child, Anthony David Alonso "Tony"

Son, Tony, being baptized

Louise Carter Vardiman with her grandson, Tony


Bob & Mary Phil Koger, (Larry's daughter, Kelly & wife, Jeannette Vardiman) Tony Alonso

Mary Phil receiving an award



Mary had over thirty years of combined Federal Service – 13 ½ military and 17 civil service. She enlisted in the Air Force November of 1972, completed Basic Training at Lackland AFB, and served as a Supply Technician at Randolph AFB and RAF Alconbury, England until May of 1978 when she returned to Lackland as a Military Training Instructor in BMTS. After 8 ½ years as an MTI, in June of 1986, Mary separated from the AF.

Mary returned to Federal Service through the Palace Acquire Internship program in July of 1987 as a GS-05, Training Instructor. She started her civilian service as a Faculty Development continuation training instructor, moved to the Electronic Principles course in the 342d Training Squadron for a short period as a GS-09 instructor, and returned to Faculty Development as a GS-11 course developer. In February of 1992, she was promoted to the GS-12 Instructor Supervisor of the TEMPEST and Small Computer Training Element in the 342d Training Squadron. She supervised the presentation of national level advanced engineering courses to all military services, Department of Defense agencies and contractors, and international allied nations. Her element also provided software and hardware operations training to the HQ Air Intelligence Agency (AIA) and to base and training group personnel. In total, Mary supervised one officer, six enlisted, a National Security Agency civilian GS-13 TEMPEST engineer, and four civilian GS-11 instructors.

In August of 1996, Mrs Koger and her family moved to Vandenberg AFB CA, where she was assigned as the training manager for the 534th Satellite and Command and Control Training Squadron. For 2 ½ years she managed the development and maintenance of nineteen officer and enlisted courses that trained over 350 satellite operators per year for Air Force Space Command. During that time she traveled extensively to Colorado Springs to participate in multimillion-dollar satellite acquisition and training planning meetings that charted the future of satellite design, purchase, launch, and training through the year 2020. November 1997, Mary was promoted to the squadron Training Support Flight Chief, GS-13. She supervised the Training Management Element – one civilian GS-12 training manager, the Resources Element – one civilian GS-11 resource advisor and three enlisted supply, budget, and manpower personnel, and the Computer Support Element – six enlisted computer programmers and operators.

January of 1999, Mrs Koger and her family were transferred to Sheppard AFB TX where she assumed the Training Support Flight Chief position in the 366th TRS. She supervised six civilian GS-12 training managers and one military training manager in the Training Management Element, one GS-12 Training Development Chief, and a GS-11 Training Resource Advisor, a GS-05 Management Assistant, one GS-09 detailed Budget/Financial Analyst, an enlisted Supply Technician, and a GS-03 Administrative Assistant Stay-In-Schooler in the Resources Element.

Mary has a bachelor’s degree in management from Southwest Texas State University, now Texas State University. She has received numerous awards over the years in her positions as instructor, course developer, instructor supervisor, training manager, and Training Support Flight Chief. She has twice received the Notable Civilian Achievement Award – the equivalent to the military Achievement Medal, once received the Exemplary Civilian Service Award – equivalent to the military Commendation Medal, and once received the Meritorious Civilian Service Award – equivalent to the military Meritorious Service Medal.

Mary lives in Sanger, Texas, with her husband, Bob Koger. They have a daughter, two sons, a grandson, and three granddaughters.

Written by Mary Phil Vardiman Koger  July 2010

Copyright 2016