CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – On this fourth of July, family and friends remember a true American Hero from the city of Chicopee, Air Force Colonel Ed Malikowski, who died Saturday at the age of 102.

Colonel Malikowski, who celebrated his 100th birthday at Barnes Air National Guard Base in 2019, was among the pioneers of the 104th Fighter Wing. His nearly forty year career with the Air Force dates back to his distinguished service with the legendary Berlin Airlift after World War II.

Colonel Malikowski’s son, Chicopee businessman Ed Malikowski, told 22News how proud he is of he’s dad’s accomplishments and service to his country, “I will certainly remember him for his whole life. His love for his family, and his love for his country.”

On Thursday morning at 9:00 a.m., a funeral mass for Colonel Ed Malikowski will be held at Saint Stanislaus Basilica in Chicopee. Kozikowski Funeral Home is handling all arrangements.