NEWS / Updates‎ > ‎

TAPS

'TAPS' for our Brothers -  We Remember
We play TAPS for our Army Brothers who survived the Vietnam War, lived their lives and have since past.  We honor them and their families.  Their names, and in some cases, their pictures are here on this page:

The Playing of TAPS

  
 
      


Dedicated to those with us and those that have passed ~



Recently Deceased Members:

Lonnie Marvin Long - 'Lonnie', age 74, of Mountain Home, Arkansas passed away Friday, 09-06-2013 in Mountain Home, Arkansas. He was born July 19, 1939, in Rosie, AR to John and Lillian (Burt) Long.  Lonnie married Joyce Davenport October 20, 1965, in Lake City. He was a member of the First Baptist Church in Pocahontas. He was a retired Journeyman Tool and Die maker for 45 years.  He served with the Army's 18th Aviation Co and earned the 'Air Medal' as a Crew Chief flying out of Saigon during the Vietnam War '63-'64. Lonnie is survived by his wife Joyce and daughter Karen Karr of Mountain Home,


Robert L ''Bob' or 'Mac' 
McElhanon - of Glenwood AR., passed 01-18-2014.  He served with  the Army in the Korean War and with the 18th Aviation Co earning the 'Air Medal' as a Crew Chief flying out of Saigon during the Vietnam War '63-'64 - along with his lifetime friend Lonnie Long.  'Mac' is survived by his loving wife Margaret.



  • Jack W. Serig /'61-62 O3 Pilot-MtnOfcr /Miami, FL /DOD 2014 /Survived by Wife: Lourdes
  • Elred 'Pierre' Bourne /'62-63 Pilot O2 /Huntsville, AL /DOD: 09-25-2014 /Survived by Wife: Rose
  • Keith R. Borck /'60-61 W2 Pilot /Sebring, FL / DOD 04-28-2014 /Survived by Wife: Charlene
  • Doug Coykendall – Passed away on DOD 09-02-2014 after a tough & brave fight with Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) – thought to be related to Agent Orange – Doug was a Captain with the 18th Avn and flew mostly from Saigon covering III & IV Corp ’64-’65.  The great Otter pilot is survived by his loving wife Audrey in Fredonia, NY.  Our Brother - may you R.I.P.






  • 'Frank' (Francis Dean) Bettinger
     - Passed away peaceful at his home in VA (DOD 04/18/2015.  He had health problems, some of which were related to Agent Orange. Frank served in Korea, was a Green Beret and flew with the 18th Avn Co. during one of his tours in VN.  He was a highly decorated soldier. He received numerous medals, some of which included the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and the Meritorious Service Medal. He retired as a full Colonel with his wife Denise.  His family is planning a burial at Arlington National Cemetery with honors.
     May our Brother R.I.P.   

  • John R Quesenberry - Died 07-16-2015 - John flew with the 54th Avn Co 1968 - He had 3 combat tours in VN amassing 4,230 Flt hrs & 1,570 combat hrs with 2 AHCs & the 54th. He was be laid to rest at Miramar Natl Cem in San Diego, CA. He is survived by his wife & 2 children. Thank you 'Dick' Lochner - Pilot 1LT 54th Avn. Dick lives in Eagle River, AK.


Clifton A 'Cliff' Pufpaff  -
Soon after we had our 2015 Reunion, Cliff Pufpaff passed at his home in Hampstead, NC on October 18.  Cliff flew with the 18th Aviation Co '62-'63 and was one of the Vietnam 'Otter' pioneers.  A wonderful man who you could not help but like. During his years with the Army, Cliff flew everything he could get his hands on - fixed or rotary wing - and retired a WO4. He is survived by his beloved wife Bobbie and a large family that loved and honored him, as we his 'brothers' do. Together he & Bobbie attended our yearly Reunions and we missed them this year, and always will.  R.I.P. // We have linked a wonderful eulogy written by his good friend.  See the PDF file linked at bottom of this page.
Barbara ' Bobbie' Pufpaff - One of the great ladies of our Group - Cliff's Sweet 'Bobbie' Pufpaff passed on June 4th 2016. See is greatly missed. R.Together I.P.

William F. 'Bill' Casey - Lt. Colonel (Retired) passed away peacefully surrounded by his family after a brave battle against Lung Cancer on THU 12-30-2015 in Ballwin, MO.  Bill was a young 77 yrs old.  He served with the 18th Aviation Co in Vietnam.  He is survived by is wife Patricia and two children Shawn & Libby and four grandchildren. Lt. Col. William Francis Casey was laid to rest at Jefferson Brrck. Nat'l Cemetery.   R.I.P. Colonel.
  
Joe E. Carter - It saddens me to inform you that my father SFC Joseph Edgar Carter, 18 AVN CO '66-'67, passed away on 6 April 2016 in Ayden, NC.  My dad was 87 years young and was going hard up until the end…he was very proud of his 20+ years of service to the US Army and of being a member of the “Otters”.  He received full military burial from members of the 82 ABN Honor Guard...My wife and I both are retired from the US Air Force after each serving 20+ years of service.  My Dad would always remind us there was nothing we ever did in the Air Force that the US Army didn’t first and didn’t do better.  God Bless the US Army and all our Veterans ~ Dennis and Taiya Carter // Joe lost is wife Ruth in 2006 after 52 yrs together but is survived by his 2 sons & 1 daughter.  SGT Joe will be prayerfully missed by his Family, Neighbors, Army Buddies and many friends.


Allen H. Robb - CWO (Pilot) 18th Aviation Co. in Vietnam. He was stationed in both Nha Trang and Can Tho with the 18th Avn. 11/'64 to 11/65 passed away peacefully on 05/03/2015.  A Captain (at retirement from the ARMY) Allen Robb was a young 84, when cancer can for him...He also served with the USMC before joining the Army to fly.  His son Sgt. Mike Robb (infidel83@msn.com) also retired from the Army.  Mike is in touch with our Association and looking for anyone that knew Allen Robb in the Army. R.I.P. Capt Robb  
 
  
Irving Edward Britton,  May 15, 1924 – Feb. 26, 2017. His name was ‘Irving’ - his friends called him ‘Ed’.  When he retired from the military in July, 1968, he became “Easy Ed”.  Originally from MI,  he joined the Marine Corp right out of high school, later transferred to the Army and achieved CWO4 serving as a helicopter pilot instructor. Ed loved being an Army  pilot.  He often discussed the various helicopters and planes that he had flown during his career.  He flew rotary wing in Korea and wa with the 54th Avn Co. in Viet Nam.  He saw a lot in his lifetime.  He retired while at Ft. Rucker and was placed on the Dean’s List every quarter and received many awards for his athleticism in tennis, golf and archery.  He was a serious and disciplined man but he could always have a laugh with friends during tennis, archery, bowling, golf and bridge.  His last helicopter ride was when he was air lifted to the hospital, where he later died.  He was loved and will live on in the hearts of those who knew him.   Easy Ed is survived by his wife, Regina Joan Britton (married April 1995), 2 daughters,  Janet Lorraine Kirsch and Barbara Ann Pippin, 1 granddaughter, Madilynn Lorraine Nelson and 1 great-grandson, Parker Britton Neil.    RIP ‘Easy Ed’.

William 'Billy' Saylerspassed away April 30, 2017. Billy had been a member or the Otter/Caribou Association for 25 years and had been part of the 18th Aviation Co. in VN from 1963 to 1970.  He was 'pure' Army Aviation was a great mechanic and he new the 'Otter' like his own pet.  'SSgt Billy' was the platoon Sgt in Na Trang '69-70'.  Billy is survived by his wife Mildred in Coleburn, TN and his daughter is Donna Salyers Brockmann in Troy, AL.  He was buried in Johnson City, TN in the Veterans Cemetery. Many will remember him. One great guy. R.I.P. Brother. 
     
Frank A. Ordiway, 77, of Midland, died early Dec. 13, 2017 at his home after an illness surrounded by his loving family.  He was born Nov. 3, 1940 in Midland.  Frank is survived by his wife Pauline and 4 daughters and their families.  He joined the Army in 1959 and was assigned to the 18th Aviation Co. in Vietnam in 1963-64 was a flight Crew Chief and mechanic.  Frank also served overseas in Germany and retired from the Army in 1980 after 20 years.  Go with God, dear Brother, we will miss you.



 
Jacob 'JAKE' David Staples ~ passed away April 5, 2018 ~ WO1 Staples was assigned and flew for the 18th Avn Co. on his 1st tour.  He was stationed in the Delta at CanTho.  On his 2nd tour CWO 'Jake' was assigned to the 54th Aviation Co. out of Vung Tau.  He flew the entire country of S. Vietnam. Now he flies to the beyond.  Go with God - and R.I.P. Brother.
 







Charles (Chuck) E. Whigham
, a resident of Dothan, died March 13, 2018 at his home following multiple illnesses. He was 81.  ‘Chuck’ was born April 9, 1936 in Columbia, AL .  He graduated from Emory Riddle Aeronautical University at Ft. Rucker with a BS Degree in Professional Aeronautics.  He served in the U. S. Army, Air Force and the National Guard, retiring after 21 years of military service as a CWO3, serving 3 tours in Vietnam.  He flew Army Otters and Helicopters.  He was the recipient of numerous awards including the: Distinguished Flying Cross, Army Commendation Medal, The Air Medal (10th Award) and Good Conduct Medal.   ////  After retirement, he worked as a Safety Manager and was a pilot for several commercial organizations. He was a member of the V.H.P.A, First Cav. Association, A.O.P.A. and the D.F.C.  He is survived by his wife, ‘Joan’ and 4 children: Craig D. Branham (Natalie) of Los Angeles, CA, Christopher E. Branham (Claire Lightner) of Ramona, CA, Michele Johnson (Todd) of Wellington, FL and Jennifer Givins of Santa Cruz, CA; step-daughter, Shannon Grandey of Murfreesboro, TN; a brother, Jimmy Whigham of Fairbanks, AK; a sister, Emily Medlen (Michael) of Wicksburg; 7 grandchildren.  Brother - Fly the heavenly skies and go with God.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

CW4 (Ret. ARMY) Wilson (‘Will’) Douglas Roach, 83, of El Paso, Texas, passed away unexpectedly on February 15, 2019.  Will was born in Athens, LA.  While proudly serving his country for 30 years, he did two (2) tours of duty as an Army Pilot in Vietnam, and served throughout most of the Cold War era.  In addition, Doug worked for the federal government as the Airspace Coordinator for MacGregor Range, New Mexico. Doug was a devout Catholic and longtime parishioner of Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church, in El Paso. Doug is preceded in death by his beloved wife of 59 years, Florencia; mother, Omega and father John D. Roach; sister, Melba Driskill and brother John (Barry) Roach.  Left to mourn his loss and cherish his memory are:  his son, Kent and daughter, Karen (Ken) Levin, as well as his grandchildren and friends. Committal Service is at 1:30pm on Tuesday, March 05, 2019 at Fort Bliss National Cemetery with full Military Honors.  R.I.P.  Dear Brother in Arms ~ Go with God.


The Country is in Mourning - for a Soldier Died today:   www.justacommonsoldier.com
 

NOTE: If you knew any of these great guys and want to contact their families write us at: 18.54Aviation@gmail.com

Ċ
Jeff Bic,
Feb 2, 2016, 3:28 PM
Comments