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Robert McDermott Dies: Retired Brig. Gen. Robert F. McDermott, former dean of the Air Force Academy, died Aug. 28 of a stroke at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio. He was 86. A World War II combat pilot, McDermott was best known for his transformational curriculum and policies at the academy, many of which migrated to the other military academies, earning him the title “Father of Military Education.” In 1957, President Dwight Eisenhower had named him the school’s first permanent professor and, later, the first permanent dean of the faculty, a title he retained for nearly 10 years. After retiring from the service in 1968, McDermott led the USAA insurance company, spending 24 years as the chief executive.