Dave Dingee was born on February 16, 1943, in Olney, Maryland. After graduating with a bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona, he entered Officer Training School on March 17, 1967, and was commissioned a 2d Lt in the U.S. Air Force at Lackland AFB, Texas, on May 27, 1967. Lt Dingee attended Undergraduate Pilot Training at Webb AFB, Texas, from June to October 1967, and then completed Undergraduate Navigator Training and was awarded his navigator wings at Mather AFB, California, in July 1968. He then attended Electronic Warfare Officer training at Mather AFB from July 1968 to April 1969, and F-4 Phantom II Combat Crew Training at Homestead AFB, Florida, from April 1969 to February 1970. His next assignment was as an F-4E Weapon Systems Officer (WSO) with the 4th Tactical Fighter Squadron at DaNang AB, South Vietnam, from February 1970 to February 1971, followed by service as an F-4E WSO and Instructor WSO with the 309th Tactical Fighter Squadron and the 31st Tactical Fighter Wing at Homestead AFB from February 1971 to April 1972. Capt Dingee then deployed with the 308th Tactical Fighter Squadron to Udorn Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, where he flew combat missions in Southeast Asia from April 1972 until he was forced to eject over North Vietnam and was taken as a Prisoner of War on June 27, 1972. After spending 275 days in captivity, he was released during Operation Homecoming on March 28, 1973. He was briefly hospitalized to recover from his injuries at Maxwell AFB, Alabama, and then attended Undergraduate Pilot Training, receiving his pilot wings at Moody AFB, Georgia, in October 1974. He then completed F-4 Combat Crew Training and served as an F-4D pilot at Holloman AFB, New Mexico, from October 1975 to October 1977. Maj Dingee attended Armed Forces Staff College at Norfolk, Virginia, from October 1977 to August 1978, and then served as a Joint Air Operations Officer in South Korea from August 1978 to July 1980. His next assignment was with the 63rd Tactical Fighter Group at MacDill AFB, Florida, where he requalified in the F-4 from July 1980 to February 1981, served as Assistant Group Operations Officer from February to May 1981, served as Operations Officer of the 63rd Tactical Fighter Squadron from May to October 1981, and then served as Operations Officer of the 13th Tactical Fighter Squadron from October 1981 to June 1982. Lt Col Dingee served as Operations officer of the 70th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Moody AFB, Georgia, from June 1982 to August 1983, and then as Commander of the 69th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Moody from August 1983 to December 1984. His next assignment was as Assistant Deputy Commander for Operations with the 347th Tactical Fighter Wing at Moody AFB from December 1984 to July 1985, followed by Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, from July 1985 to June 1986. Col Dingee served as Deputy Commander for Operations of the 23rd Tactical Fighter Wing at England AFB, Louisiana, from June 1986 to February 1987, and then as Vice Commander of the 23rd Tactical Fighter Wing from February 1987 to June 1988. His next assignment was as Commander of the 343rd Tactical Fighter Wing at Eielson AFB, Alaska, from June 1988 to August 1990, followed by service at Langley AFB, Virginia, from August 1990 until his retirement from the Air Force on July 1, 1992. Dave Dingee died on February 18, 2012, and was buried at the Jacksonville National Cemetery in Jacksonville, Florida.
His Silver Star Citation reads:
For gallantry in connection with military operations against an opposing armed force in Southeast Asia, while serving with the 308th Tactical Fighter Squadron, attached to the 432d Tactical Fighter Wing, Udorn Royal Thai Air Base, Thailand, PACIFIC Air Force, in action on 1 June 1971. On that date, Captain Dingee was escorting Search and Rescue forces at low altitude in North Vietnam. In spite of the heavily defended hostile area, he selflessly contributed to the location and subsequent rescue of a previously downed aircrewman. While participating in the rescue operation, his aircraft was seriously damaged by a hostile Surface-to-Air missile. By his gallantry and devotion to duty, Captain Dingee has reflected great credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.