He was getting old and paunchy and his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion, telling stories of the past.
Of a war that he had fought in and the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies; they were heroes, every one.
And tho' sometimes, to his neighbors, his tales became a joke,
All his Legion buddies listened, for they knew whereof he spoke.
But we'll hear his tales no longer for old Bill has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer, for a soldier died today.
He will not be mourned by many, just his children and his wife,
For he lived an ordinary and quite uneventful life.
Held a job and raised a family, quietly going his own way,
And the world won't note his passing, though a soldier died today.
When politicians leave this earth, their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing and proclaim that they were great.
Papers tell their whole life stories, from the time that they were young,
But the passing of a soldier goes unnoticed and unsung.
Is the greatest contribution to the welfare of our land
A guy who breaks his promises and cons his fellow man?
Or the ordinary fellow who, in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his Country and offers up his life?
A politician's stipend and the style in which he lives
Are sometimes disproportionate to the service that he gives.
While the ordinary soldier, who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal and perhaps, a pension small.
It's so easy to forget them for it was so long ago, That the old Bills of our Country went to battle, but we know It was not the politicians, with their compromise and ploys, Who won for us the freedom that our Country now enjoys.
Should you find yourself in danger, with your enemies at hand, Would you want a politician with his ever-shifting stand? Or would you prefer a soldier, who has sworn to defend His home, his kin and Country and would fight until the end?
He was just a common soldier and his ranks are growing thin, But his presence should remind us we may need his like again. For when countries are in conflict, then we find the soldier's part Is to clean up all the troubles that the politicians start.
If we cannot do him honor while he's here to hear the praise, Then at least let's give him homage at the ending of his days. Perhaps just a simple headline in a paper that would say, Our Country is in mourning, for a soldier died today.
It is with deep sadness we announce that COL(R) Ernie Sylvester, 74 of Tampa, passed away on the morning of 14 Aug 15. Born in New Orleans, LA, growing up in Gulfport, MS., Ernie served his country in the US Army in his early career as a air ambulance pilot, and later as a Hospital Administrator. Ernie was a Past President of the Dustoff Association (2004-05) and a member of theDUSTOFF Association Hall of Fame.
In 1964, as a 2LT, he was assigned to the famed 57th Medical Detachment (AA) in Soc Trang, Vietnam. He often flew as MAJ Kelly's co-pilot, flying in all conditions, and directly into the teeth of the enemy to save the wounded under the most dangerous conditions. Ernie was the first Army helicopter pilot to exceed 1000 hours of flight time in a 12-month period, and was the Pilot-in-Command of the helicopter that recovered MAJ Kelly's body when he was killed on 1 July 1964. He carried the lessons learned from Kelly forward to the newly arrived 82nd Medical Detachment (AA) in the fall of 1964, and commanded both the 54th and 68th Medical Detachments in Vietnam in 1970. During his two tours in Vietnam, he earned three DFCs, 47 Air Medals (multiple with V/device), the Bronze Star with V, and the Purple Heart.
The DUSTOFF Association strives to both honor and follow in the huge footsteps left by those who paved the way. Ernie was one of those who left a lasting legacy through his humility, his gregarious personality, and his selfless service as a leader and mentor in the DUSTOFF community. He was also a dedicated leader within his church and a highly respected individual within his community.
Earl Fred Deming, age 74, of Meadow Lane, Oak Grove passed away 2 Oct 15, of natural causes at his home.
Mr. Deming was born in Ellsworth, KS on 18 Apr 41, the son of the late Earl J. and Violet L. Kempke Deming, Jr. He was a retired US Army SFC who served in Vietnam where he earned a Silver Star. After the Army he worked as a chef for Western State Hospital and Memorial Hospital in Clarksville. Earl was a member of Faith Lutheran of Hopkinsville and a lifetime member of VFW Post 1913 andVietnam Dustoff Association.
William D. Mostek
In 1986, Bill married the love of his life and lifetime friend Lynn Truesdell, and formed their family with her son Jason Whittaker. Bill worked at the Co-op and then scaled logs for 30 years. He helped most of the scalars in this area, as well as the local cub scouts, learn how to identify species and scale. Every year that Bill taught the cub scouts they took first place in the state competition.
Bill is a member of the Disabled American Veterans and volunteered to assist veterans in Boundary County with needs such as purchasing wheelchairs and food. Bill has also belonged to the Lions Club, Eagles, VFW, and the American Legion. Bill loved his family with unconditional love. Bill and Lynn also loved hunting for firewood and spent many hours looking for rocks with faces in them. Bill loved to dance and enjoyed nights sitting on his deck.
John McKeller, 71, passed away on Thursday, December 10, 2015. He was born in Frankson, TX to Mary Bell- McKeller on March 8, 1944. John had six brothers and sisters. He moved to Albuquerque, NM in 1958 with his Aunt Pearl. John was a graduate from Albuquerque High School in 1964. He then went into the US Army and served in Vietnam flying with the 54th Med Det. After his military service he worked as a truck driver and retired after 25 years. Though the years John met and married Gwendolyn Moultrie. Together they parented 6 children; Juanita, Theresa, Tina, Jamaul (aka)CJ, Sharon, Tim and who between them have 11 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren. John is survived by Columbus Skinner (Aunt Babe), 2 brothers; Lonnie McKeller (LA), Isiah (Skip)Massie and a host of nieces, nephews and friends.John will always be Remembered and Loved.
Thomas Edward "Tommy" Imes
ACCOVILLE, W.Va. — Thomas Edward "Tommy" Imes, 65, of Accoville, passed away Fri., April 25, 2014.
Born Sept. 13, 1948, at Logan, he was a son of the late Robert Lee Imes Sr. and Marjorie Gollihue Imes Beidler. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his grandparents, Hurdle and Mable Gollihue and Ossie and Mary Imes.
Tommy was a U.S. Army Vietnam veteran, serving from 1968 to 1970 as a crew chief in the 498th Medivac Unit, where he received a citation for an air medal. He worked as a heavy equipment mechanic, retiring from Patriot Coal in 2010 after more than 36 years of service. A hard worker, Tommy loved his Garage and John Deere. He was always there for whoever needed him.
Those left to cherish his memory include his wife of 44 years, Mary Jo Muldrew Imes; two sons, Michael Steven (Tammy) Imes of Trace Fork and Johnathan Edward (Ashley) Imes of South Charleston; one brother, Robert Lee Jr. (Joyce) Imes of Accoville; two granddaughters, Cassie and Faith Imes, both of Man, and several good and special friends.
Services will be held at 1 p.m. Thurs., May 1, at Krantz-McNeely Funeral Home with Rev. Bill Runyon officiating. Burial will follow in Highland Memory Gardens at Godby where Military Graveside Rites will be conducted by VFW Post 6153 and American Legion Post 103 of Chapmanville and the DAV Post 39 of Harts. Visitation will be from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. Pallbearers will include family and friends. Online condolences may be sent to www.krantzmcneelyfuneralhome.com Krantz-McNeely Funeral Home at Man is in charge of services.
Ralph Bybee, 65, went Home to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Thursday, June 17, 2010. Ralph was born on August 30, 1944, to Noble Henry Bybee and Dorothy Maxine Carey Bybee. He was raised in Preston, Mo., and graduated from Skyline High School in 1962. He was saved on August 16, 1954, and became an ordained Deacon of the Missionary Baptist Church, on November 6, 1966. After graduation from high school, he attended Draughon's Business College and Southwest Missouri State University, until he joined the military at the age of 25. Ralph proudly served two years in Vietnam and was honorably discharged with a Bronze Star. Prior to leaving for the military, he married his high school sweetheart, Phyllis Ann Mabary, on October 20, 1963. They were married in the Little Niangua Church, in Preston, Mo., and remained married and deeply in love for 46 years. Ralph was a business man in Springfield and Branson, and had recently retired, in September 2009. For many years he enjoyed playing golf with his wife and friends, but was never more proud than when he was spending time with his three granddaughters. He is survived by his wife, Phyllis Bybee; mother, Dorothy Smith; two children and their spouses, Stephanie and Chad Young and Ryan and Amanda Bybee; his three granddaughters, Hailey Bybee, Chloe and Sophia Young; and a host of family and friends, of which he was very proud. Visitation will be held Sunday, June 20, 2010, from 4 to 6 p.m., in Greenlawn Funeral Home North. A meorial service will be held Monday, June 21, 2010, at 10 a.m., in the funeral home. Interment will take place at 1 p.m., in Little Niangua Cemetery, in Preston, Mo.
Col [Ret] Charles "Skip Champion
Skip, 67, of Marietta, GA passed away Tuesday, November 1, 2011. A native of Tate, GA. and a Vietnam veteran, Col. Champion retired from the US Army in 1996 after 30 years of service to our country.
After a brief battle with cancer, Michael R. Nice, born on October 5, 1949 went to be with the Lord on September 7, 2011. Mike was graduated from Wasson High School in 1967. He served in the U.S. Army from 1968 to 1970. He was a helicopter air ambulance pilot in the Vietnam War and flew as Dustoff 11 in the 45th Medical Company (Air Ambulance).
CW4 Michael Don Rominger
passed away suddenly by a heart attack on June 24, 2010, in Sacramento, California.
Though always close to my dad, with his passing I have become even more acutely
aware of the incredible man he was--and the impact Vietnam had on him and our
born in Ada, Oklahoma,
August 25, 1948, the son of a World War II Air Force pilot, and traveled all
over the United States
as an "Air Force Brat." When his father retired from the service,
settling in Sunnyvale,
California, my father
was in high school, excelling in sports, especially football, and the sciences.
My mother attended the rival high school, but they met in a summer school
chemistry class. The chemistry was right.
He graduated from Sunnyvale High School in 1966 with a football scholarship to San Jose
but attended only one semester before enlisting in the Army and then marrying
my mother, Roberta, in January 1967.
Accepted into Warrant Officer Candidacy, my father knew from the onset
the Dust Off mission could be his only placement, often saying whenever pressed
by people why he didn't even desire the flashy gunships, "I chose to save
lives, wanted to save lives, not take lives." And, indeed, he lived his entire life in the
service of saving lives in many ways.
First, however, he graduated from WORWAC 68-503; and a silver baby cup
sits with me as I write this, inscribed by the men of his class--something I
cherish more than any item.
father's tour begins in July 1968. He
actually arrived home July 21st, 1969,
to a year old daughter, a hot wife (all the guys thought my mom was a babe!),
and Armstrong walking on the moon--a fitting homecoming for a man who
considered himself an amateur astronomer and longed to travel in space himself.
While in Vietnam, my father flew call sign Dustoff 30 for
the 45th Medical Company, 44th Medical Brigade, primarily out of Nui Dat, Vung
Tau, and Da Nang,
in support of ANZAC forces, but also flying in support of American Special
Ops. My dad spoke of Vietnam in what I called,
"Vietnam Lite," same flavor but less horrific for the listener. Upon
his death, I've found out a tremendous amount of information about my father,
his skill as a pilot and his absolute fortitude in combat. Crew chiefs, commanders, medics,
co-pilots--they all tell the same story...that "Mr. Rominger was a natural
pilot, couldn't stand to have any soldier suffer for any length of time, had
almost a clairvoyance about him concerning missions, and was a straight
arrow." He began "scarfing up" so many missions that they began
calling him Scarf. Whenever I asked my
father or anyone did, why he'd volunteer to go into a hot LZ without gunship
support, he said the same thing, "They were there suffering; I could do no less." 'I could do no less" was all he humbly
two Distinguished Flying Crosses while in Vietnam. One for rescuing an
Australian Patrol that was about to be over run and had no gunship or fighter
support during this hoist mission. He used three helicopters to rescue the
patrol, taking a fresh Huey out to the firefight each time the craft got too beat up to fly back in. He was shot in two places on this mission but
never awarded a Purple Heart. His
attitude was always, "Puh! What the
medics did! The men I flew to the
hospital! Those were wounds deserving of
a Purple Heart, Lynne. Mine were scratches compared to men with limbs
missing!" The Australian Commander nominated him for the Victoria Cross,
their medal of honor. But somehow it died in the bureaucracy of the
day. Daddy flew many missions into Cambodia and Laos when we "weren't
there." Possibly the reason for few
medals and the "lost" Victoria Cross.
He was also shot down many times, most notably on April 8, 1969, where
after POL on the way back to Vung Tau, anti-aircraft blew the Huey out of the
sky, and he led his crew to a river 150 feet from the crash, hiding in the
water, until rescued by navy patrol boats. Daddy's medic on that day, Dan
Collins wrote a detailed story on the crash of "Auggie" and their escape, noting my father's
particular calm and leadership. On
another notable mission, shot down supporting Australians, he had to escape and
evade and actually fight hand to hand with his VC pursuer. In addition to the Distinguished
Flying Crosses, he is the recipient of the Silver Star and Bronze Star and
more. Though I feel derelict not having
the list of medals and flight hours at hand as I write, I know my father's only
concern was Kelly's motto, "until I have your wounded." He loved
flying and sought to save lives. His reward was never in the kudos of
instructed at Ft. Rucker soon after returning from Vietnam, leaving active duty in
1971, but flying as a reservist still. He worked as a firefighter/police
officer for the City of Sunnyvale
for a few years. But with an itch to fly more, he rejoined the Army as a civilian/reservist instructor for the
army reserve command in Minnesota--fine
by me as the fire truck was never quite as cool as sitting in the Huey! California called us
back when my father took the position of Lead Pilot for the US Forest
Service. "Flying" Magazine
actually did an ad campaign with my dad as the poster boy! In 1978 he was hired
by CDF (Cal Fire) and was a chief in their air tanker and helicopter
program. He left CDF in 1989, recruited by California Department of
Justice, Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement , to implement an aviation
program. Still a Dust Off pilot at
heart, in 1990, his reserve unit, the 343rd Medical Detachment, out of Hamilton
Air Force Base, Novato, CA, deployed to Desert Storm, where CW4 Rominger flew
as Dustoff 100, leading the first
element of medevac into the Kuwait INTL Airport, in support of the ground
forces. They called themselves the "Dustoff Dudes." In 1993 he was part of a group that developed
an aviation surveillance class at the Federal Law Enforcement
mother was diagnosed with cancer, however, my dad took an early retirement to
care for her. She succumbed to breast
cancer in July 2004. I truly believe
that the hardest thing for my father to endure was that he couldn't fly a
helicopter in to save her. There was
nothing he could do this time. After her
death, he hung out with me, my brother, Matthew, and his grandchildren. My father loved kids and was one at heart.
Every year when I taught war literature (I'm an English teacher), my Dad came
and gave a slide show and presentation of both Vietnam
and Kuwait. He rocked my babies, sang to them, and
enjoyed being a grandfather. When they
were really little, he played with them as if they were little helicopters,
flying "nap of the earth" over the furniture. Apparently, he liked to fly fast and low in
the Huey in Vietnam
according to all who flew with him.
Until his passing, Michael Don Rominger also volunteered as a docent at
the Aerospace Museum of California.
Though he did suffer with PTSD, he was an amazing, humble, and moral
man. I will miss my Dust Off Dad! Rest
in Peace, Daddy! I know you're flying
your Huey in Heaven.
Crump, 68, passed away May 12, 2010. She is preceded in death by her son Thomas
Michael Martinez. Anna is survived by her loving husband Chet Crump, children:
Anna Lourdes Flynn and husband Tom, Jose Conrado Martinez, II, Lytrell Williams
and husband Laffayette, Chip Crump, III, and wife Pandora, Greg Crump and wife
Valerie, daughter-in-law Lydia Martinez, sisters: Magarita Coronado and husband
Antonio, Deanna J. Garcia, brother: Guadalupe Garcia and wife Josefina,
sister-in-law: Jean Bailey, Brother-in-law Jack Crump and wife Debra,
grandchildren: Tommy Martinez, II, T.J. Flynn, Daniel Flynn, Robert Flynn,
William Flynn, Veronica Flynn, J.C. Martinez, III, Briana Martinez, Maxine
Martinez, Logan Crump and Hailee Williams. The family will receive friends
Sunday May 16, 2010 from 5:00 - 8:00 p.m. with a vigil service at 6:00 p.m. in
the chapel of Klein Funeral Home. Services will be at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday May
18, 2010 at St. Anne's Catholic Church in Tomball.
Obituary for James H Ihli
James H Ihli, 68, of Boise,
passed away Monday, March 29 at the VA hospital in Boise.
Cremation arrangements are being handled by Summers Funeral
Home.A Military Memorial service will
be held at the Veterans Cemetery in Boise at 1:00 Tuesday, April 6.A lunch and reception will follow at the
Melba Senior Citizens Hall.All are
invited to attend and share memories of Jim.
Jim was born Dec 22, 1941 in Caldwell to Nick & Minnie (Barnes)
Ihli.He grew up in the Owyhee's and CanyonCounty.He went to school in Opaline, Murphy, and Grandview and graduated
from Melba in 1960.He attended New
Mexico Military Institute on a ROTC scholarship where he also played
football.He graduated from IdahoStateUniversity in 1965.He entered the Army in March of 1966.He spent 5 years in the service and 19 months
of that in Vietnam
as a U S Army Medical Evacuation Helicopter pilot.He served with the 254th Medical
Detachment.For heroism and
extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight, Jim earned The
Distinguished Flying Cross.This is an
amazing record of dedication to recover our wounded soldiers in the field under
fire.In addition, Jim was awarded The
Air Medal with 29 Oak Leaf Clusters.The air medal definition is -person shall have distinguished himself be
meritorious achievement while in aerial flight or acts of heroism.After Jim returned home, he owned the
Glenwood Bar, 44 Club, and a ranch in the foothills of Mountain Home.He worked for the BoisecityParks and Recreation until he retired in
He had a great love of the outdoors and looked forward to
the summer fishing trip at Juniper Creek and deer hunting in Silver city.Jim had a heart of gold.He was always willing to help someone in need
financially or just be there as a friend.The courage Jim displayed during his life was notable.The numerous missions he flew in Vietnam
as a Medi Vac pilot continuously put him in harms way.The last 20 years of his life were difficult
at times while he battled cancer.In all
things, his ability to continue to fight for life everyday was remarkable.He will not be forgotten.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Nick Ihli and
Minnie (Barnes) Ihli and his brother, Charles Ihli.He is survived by his 2 brothers; Nick
(Delores) Ihli and Mike (Linda) Ihli and 4 sisters; Florine (Sam) Rodich of
California, Mary Ann (Jack) Haines of Caldwell, Jane (Bob)Merrick of Nampa, Sr.
Jean Ihli of St. Gertrudes in Cottonwood, and 1 sister-in-law; Dorothy Ihli of Caldwell,
and many nieces and nephews and their families and cousins.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in Jim's memory may be made to
your favorite charity.
Michael J Novosel Jr.
SHALIMAR — It’s been said that people close to death sometimes will hold on long enough to complete one last thing important in their life.On Thursday night, Michael J. Novosel Jr. passed away at his home in Shalimar surrounded by his family. He died just 30 hours after he accepted a Medal of Honor flag Wednesday for his father, the late Michael J. Novosel Sr.“We really believe he held on for that,” said Tom Rice, a local restaurant owner who helps organize the local Honor Flights that take veterans to the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.Okaloosa County Judge Patt Maney, a retired brigadier general in the Army Reserves who served with Novosel Jr., helped organize the Medal of Honor flag ceremony for his friend.“I think he’d like to be remembered as someone who cared for his fellow man and particularly soldiers, widows and orphans,” Maney said.Novosel Jr. and his father were the first father-son pilot team to serve in Vietnam. They evacuated more than 5,500 dead or wounded.Novosel Jr.’s commitment continued long after his military service. He started a foundation named after his father to help wounded warriors with the National Guard and Army Reserves and their families.
Jerry Don Ham
Jerry Don Ham, 65, of Amarillo died Saturday, Dec. 12, 2009.Jerry was born Jan. 11, 1944, in Vancouver, Wash., to Frank and Helen Ham. Jerry grew up in Canyon, where he graduated from high school and from West Texas A&M University. Jerry enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1969, and graduated from the U.S. Army Aviation School in 1970 as a Dustoff Helicopter Pilot. He served a year in Vietnam and was shot down twice while there. Jerry was a hero with many medals.
At the age of 5, he could recite Psalms 23 to the church congregation. He was a leader at a young age, leading his family to church. Jerry moved to Claude in 1989, where he farmed and ranched for 20 years. He married Carol Jeannette Walker on July 22, 1989. Jerry was a member of Paramount Baptist Church in Amarillo.
He was preceded in death by his father, Frank Ham and a brother, Bill Ham. Survivors include his wife, Carol; his mother, Helen Ham of Canyon; three children, Frank Ham and wife Laura of Sacramento, Calif., Candace Tisdale and husband Landon of Amarillo and Brian Palmer of Yuba City, Calif.; two brothers, Robert Ham and wife Lana and Charles Ham and wife Roseanne, all of Amarillo; two granddaughters, Jamie Ham of Sacramento and Ashlynn Tisdale of Amarillo; a grandson, Jered Tisdale of Amarillo; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Colonel John Temperilli
Colonel John Temperilli, United States Army (retired), born June 6, 1927 in Winsted, Connecticut to John and Ida (Centrella) Temperilli filed his final flight plan on February 26, 2008. John attended St. Michael's College, Winooski, Vermont before entering the Army in 1952 at Fort Devens, Mass. He served his country over 30 years as a proud member of the United States Medical Service Corps, Air Ambulance - DUSTOFF. His many tours of duty included 16 months in Korea and 2 tours in Vietnam - taking the first Air Ambulance Medevac unit to that country in 1962. He graduated from St. Mary's University, San Antonio, Texas in 1965. John was honored with many decorations and awards and was entered into the Infantry Hall of Fame at Ft. Benning, Georgia in 1977; and into the DUSTOFF Hall of Fame at Fort Sam Houston in 2002. He retired at Fort Devens, Massachusetts in 1980. John is survived by his wife and partner of almost 55 years Nancy (Farrell) Temperilli; sons John Robert (Paula), Peter Michael; daughters Janine Louise Long (Sonny), Tre Farrell Temperilli, and Suzann Evalyn Campos (Robert); 7 grandchildren and 1 great grandson; and brother James Temperilli. The family sincerely thanks the caregivers at Parklane West and is so grateful for the loyal and loving care given by Ruth Vidal. Donations may be made in John's name to the United StatesArmyMedicalMuseum at Fort Sam Houston, or to St. Anthony de Padua Church, Lorenz Road, San Antonio, Texas, 78209. Calling hours will be at Sunset Funeral Home, Austin Highway from 4 to 7 pm on Sunday, March 2. Memories celebrating John's life will be shared at 5:30 pm. A mass to celebrate John's life will be held at St. Anthony de Padua Church on Lorenz Drive, San Antonio at 11:30 am on Monday, March 3. Internment with full military honors will follow at approximately 1:15 pm at FortSamHoustonNationalCemetery.
Jerry Wayne Kinsey
SHANNON – Jerry Wayne Kinsey, 65, died Saturday, Feb. 2, 2008, at the Mississippi State Veterans Home in Oxford after a lengthy illness. He was born May 13, 1942, in Mexia, Texas, to Marvin and Louise Kinsey. He was a member of the VeronaFirstBaptistChurch. He received his B.A. from SamHoustonStateUniversity. He was a captain in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War and served as a Medivac helicopter pilot. He was awarded two Bronze Stars and two Air Medals with Valor. Upon discharge from the Army, he continued his aviation career with the Mississippi National Guard and was a pilot for Exxon-Mobil until his retirement. He was well respected by his peers and his experience served as building blocks for the younger pilots he served with.
Survivors include his wife, Janet Edmondson Kinsey of Shannon; four children, Kaitlyn Kinsey and Austin Kinsey, both of the home, Joe Kinsey of Alabama and Eric Kinsey of Colorado, and their mother, Sue Stokes of Tupelo; his mother, Louise Kinsey of Waco, Texas; one brother, Jim Kinsey and Dorann of Waco, Texas; his mother-in-law, Charlene Edmondson of Shannon; one sister-in-law, Sue Ann Teer and Fred of Belden.
He was preceded in death by his father and a daughter, Samantha Kinsey.
Pallbearers will be Lee Duncan, Bobby Williams, Jeff Moon, Joe West, Wayne Farrar and Henry Williams. Honorary pallbearers will be Bob Caldwell, Walt Jordan and his Guard friends.
I have just learned that our friend Denny Juhl passed away at home over the weekend. As you probably know he had been keeping pretty much to himself recently, so details are unclear at this time. I do know that Catherine has arranged for a memorial to be held here in Euclid March 1.
Sandy Nurmi, who had helped with housekeeping for both Walt and Denny called me this noon and asked me to inform anyone I thought would want to know of Denny's passing. As I looked in my old email, I came across this message that Denny sent me and some of you in Jan. 2007. His message from a year ago was not typical of his usual emails, but it is most appropriate for us to consider again at this time.
William M. Fox Jr. SSgt. USA (Ret.)
William M. Fox, Jr. was born in Chicago, Illinois January 26, 1933 to William and Helen (Schoenfelder) Fox. He grew up in Chicago, graduated from Lindbloom HS and served in the US Air Force and Army, for 20 years. He served two tours as a Dustoff medic in Viet Nam, was awarded 13 Air Medals. He was also awarded a Purple Heart when the helicopter he was flying in was shot down and he sustained a head injury when a bullet pierced his helmet and grazed his head. The helmet is currently on display at the Army Medical Museum at Ft. Sam Houston. After retiring from the Army, he attended Texas State University and earned an Associate Degree in respiratory therapy and worked in that field for 11 years. After retirement he enjoyed wood working and was active in his church. He is survived by his wife, Beverly, of 53 years; son, William M. Fox, III. USN/MCPO SS (Ret.) and wife Linda, USN/MCPO (Ret.); daughter, Paula Rich and husband Thomas; daughter, Toni Gaston and husband David and son, Gregory L. Fox, USN/CPO SS (Ret.) and wife J. Kirstin Fox. Also, brother Larry Fox and sisters Paula Nessmith and Susan Boles, numerous grandchildren, great grandchildren, many nieces, nephews, friends, neighbors, and Dustoff brothers. He was preceded in death by his brother David Fox, and his best friend Buddy. Funeral services will be held at Grace Lutheran Church at 10 AM Tuesday, Oct. 2 and internment at Ft. Sam Houston National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.
B.C. Hall, 66, of Laurel, Missippi died Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2007, at South Central Regional Medical Center in Laurel. BC was a flight medic as well as the senior flight medic who took the 247th Medical Detachment (HA) from Kansas and deploying to Dong Tam, South Vietnam. BC served in Vietnam with the 247th from December 1968 to December 1969. B.C was buried on Friday February 9th. He joins our other Dustoff brothers who have proceeded him.
Barry Augustine O'Connor, age 57 of Topeka passed away in his home on Sun, April 9, 2006. Barry was born May 4, 1948, in Fort Dix, New Jersey, to Gerald A. and Mary Enez McElveen O'Connor. He was raised in Kentwood, LA. He served as a pilot during the Vietnam era as a Chief Warrant Officer in the US Army, attached to the DUST OFF helicopter air ambulance Corp. He received several citations for bravery in operation, including two purple hearts. Barry was a highly respected retired Sgt of the Louisiana State Police. He later worked at Goodyear and was a member of the Rubber Workers Union before retiring in 2006. He leaves to cherish his memory, his wife Neet, Topeka; 3 sons, Bryan & Jennifer O'Connor, Lawrence, Barry O'Connor, Salina, KS and Bryon & Linda Nelson, Keller, TX, daughter, Rikki Nelson & her fiance Jonah Feldhausen, Topeka; 10 grandchildren, a sister Mary O. Blades and her husband, Edwin, Jefferson City, MO.
Delmus Williams, known to his friends as Del or just "Willie" passed away on June 13, 2006 while waiting for a liver transplant--that never came to fruition. Del fought the optimistic and courageous battle to survive as the cancer slowly overcame his body. Up to the time he died, he held out hope that he would recover and continue fulfilling his life's goals. Del was born in 1951 and during his tour in Vietnam, crewed the 'Foxy Lady'with all of the pride and professionalism that marked the "Guys in the Back". Del was the founder of the Vietnam Dustoff Association. His personal goal for this group of Dustoff heroes was to bring everyone together, to promote the mission of Dustoff and to care for one another as brothers. Del's loss will be felt by us all.
Gary "Crash" Krause was a medic with the 498th, arriving in country around January or February of 69'. He was a hell of a medic, a good man. Loved to party, lived life to the fullest Spent is first tour with the 498th then extended to go to MAVC as a medic on the ground. His AO with MACV was justsouth of LZ English, and a littlenorth of the 506 Valley. According to “Bones." he and Crash and spent a couple a weeks in California after leaving themilitary and had an apartment in long Beach. And in his words, they ‘did a half ass effort at looking for jobs, but didn't land one’. A family member told Bones that Crash had died from a heartattack. Sp/5 Gary Krause, passed away in Eugene, Oregon in 2003.
Marty Ivestor "Festus"
Tuesday, October 21, 2003
Charles "Marty" Ivester, son of Connie Ivester of Jackson and the late Jewell Ivester, was born Sept. 25, 1947, at Poplar Bluff and died Sunday, Oct. 12, 2003, at the Dolly Varden Mine in Nevada at the age of 56. Mr. Ivester was a veteran of the United States Army serving in Vietnam, a mechanical engineer for ATK Thiokol Propulsion and a resident of Riverdale, Utah.
He was united in marriage to Cheryl Mae Graham on May 11, 1967, at Poplar Bluff. Mrs. Ivester survives of the home in Riverdale, Utah.
Besides his wife and mother, he is survived by one son, Chris Ivester of Riverdale, Utah; one daughter, Charite Renee Warren of Riverdale, Utah; three brothers, Ronald Ivester of St. Louis, Joel Ivester of Tucson, Ariz., and Guy Ivester of Scottsdale, Ariz.; two sisters, Annette Neyer of Lenexa, Kan., and Mary Ivester of Wichita, Kan.; and four grandchildren.
Visitation was held from 5-8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 17, 2003, at the Rainey-Mathis Funeral Home in Dexter.
Funeral services were conducted at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 18, 2003, in the Rainey-Mathis Funeral Chapel.
Interment followed in the ArmsteadDowdyCemetery near Dexter.
Bob Thackston passed away on November 6, 2004.He served with the 498th in the 1965-66 period. Family can be reached by email at RThackston@aol.com
Originally from Michigan, he came from the 82nd Airborne. He had seven jumps behind him, a jaunty, husky guy with dark, almost curly hair. I first met him in late 1969, flew with him occasionally, and was impressed. He was very fast, and often signed his bandages "Doc Ross did it again!"
In late Feb.or early March 1970, I was doing Xuan Loc with , I think, Gary Calhoun as A/C and a new medic. The first night there was a short hoist for the Big Red 1. The single patient had brain matter coming out of cracks, but he was still alive. The medic almost puked and started crying. I gently bandaged him all around and started an IV drip
He was still alive when we got to the 93rd Evac., but I knew he probably wouldn't make it. The medic was so traumatized he couldn’t even clean the aircraft windows in the morning and certainly could not treat the wounded. He was broken. For the rest of the week he stayed in the hut. I did everything the rest of the week. When we all got back to Long Binh, I asked to have Doc Ross assigned to my aircraft. We worked like a well oiled machine in hundreds and hundreds of missions, shot at (in the air) at least a hundred and fifty times--hit more than a few. Joking and having fun together to fight the fear and horror. I never saw a faster medic, or better.
After a night ambush on the Mekong with 51 cal., AKs, and SKSs point blank ( and a "Swiss cheesed" ship that wasn't even mine), and a heavy ground attack in Tan An---he started getting uncharacteristically nervous. But we were a team and he didn’t want to break us up. We were finally sepearted when his brother got in country and Doc Ross transferred State side.
I'll never forget his courage, skill, and friendship. I wish we could have made contact before his death in 2002. He was a soldier's soldier. I salute him.
We are working to gather more information on Dave and will post it when available.
Randall "Randy" Gordon Radigan
Randy was born in Vermillion, South Dakota on August 24, 1946, the second of eleven children of William Joseph and Susie Albers Radigan and "pulled pitch for the final time" on December 31, 1998 at the age of 52 years old. He was a 1964 graduate of VermilionHigh School; he attended the University of South Dakota and several colleges. In 1966, he enlisted in the U. S. Army, completed helicopter flight school, and began his first tour of duty as a medevac helicopter pilot in Vietnam. He volunteered for further tours of medevac duty in Vietnam, served 39 months there and was decorated extensively for valor in combat. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross w/OLC, the Silver Star w/OLC, the Bronze Star w/4OLC, the Air Medal with oak cluster, the Air Commendation Medal, and the Purple Heart. He flew 1,597 air-rescue missions in Vietnam and carried 4,191 wounded soldiers.
From 1974 to 1983 Randy was employed by Alyeska Pipeline as a security helicopter pilot. He was an entrepreneur with many local interests. He loved Alaska. He was an avid big game hunter and enjoyed spending his time at their cabin “in the woods.” He served on the Copper River School District School Board since 1993 and was also a member of the Copper Basin Lions Club for many years. Randy and Lorraine were married on December 31, 1983. Among those that survive him and gratefully shared his life are his wife; Lorraine, sons; Rocky and Colt, daughters; Tammy Custis, husband Jim, Brandie Bancroft, husband Blake, Alison Jaidinger, his four grandchildren; his father; William J. Radigan, his seven brothers; William, Jeffrey, Steven, Gregory, Daniel, Kelly, and James, his sisters; Suzanne, Laurie, Carol, his many nieces and nephews; and by his longtime friends Don, Joyce, Jim and Scott Horrell. He was preceded in death by his mother, Susie, and two infant daughters.