In Memorium

27 DEC 2008

LaVona Marie Burnett Chamberlin

Private services are scheduled for LaVona Marie Burnett Chamberlin who passed away Dec. 19, 2008, in Honolulu, Hawaii. LaVona was born on April 4, 1927, in Whittier, Calif. As a young child, she and her family moved to Roswell, NM, where she was raised. She graduated from Roswell High School in 1945 and shortly thereafter, married her one true love, Al Chamberlin, who survives her in Hawaii.

LaVona appreciated beauty and fashion. As a young girl, she would design her own clothes and her mother, Myrtle, would make them for her. Although she had dreams of designing clothes, she dedicated her life to her husband and her family. LaVona accompanied Al in a rich 33-year Air Force career filled with travel and adventure which continued for 63 years together. Upon Al's retirement, she continued to raise two children while collecting antiques and remodeling their historical home here in Roswell. Once the children were off to college, LaVona and Al began an active social life through various RV associations and groups such as a California Cortez group, and Cactus Sam and Smokey Bear Clubs of Roswell. They never missed an opportunity to talk about their many wonderful friends met during these travels. LaVona was a loving wife, mother, sister, aunt, grandmother and cousin and she always greeted you with a huge smile.

She will be interred at Punchbowl National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii where she will be eternally surrounded by her three favorite things: warm weather, swaying palm trees and beautiful beaches.

LaVona married Alton E. Chamberlin on June 12, 1945, in Roswell. He survives her in Honolulu, Hawaii. LaVona is survived by two sons, Gary and his wife, My, of Honolulu, Hawaii, Guy and his wife, Kandy, of Roswell; two daughters, Roxane Cook and her husband, Don, of Villa Rica, Ga.; and Nora Brainern and her husband, Tim, of Roswell; one sister, Mildred Stroade of San Angleo, Texas; one sister-in-law, Tomellen "Tommie" Burnett of Roswell; grandchildren, Jason Cook, Jeremy Cook, Bart Chamberlin, Janet Chamberlin, Alex Chamberlin and Eryn Chamberlin; nieces, Sherry Dean, Nancy Lents, Abbie Burnett and Carolyn Stroade; nephew, Mike Burnett; and numerous cousins whom she loved dearly. She was preceded in death by her parents, Glenn and Myrtle Burnett-Coffey; one sister Arbie Dean; one brother Clye K Burnett Jr.; three brothers-in-law, Walter Dean, Fred Stroade and Robert Chamberlin; and two nephews, Doyce Stroade and John Lents III.

I Am Free

Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free

I am following the path God laid for me.

I took his hand when I heard Him call,

I turned my back and left it all.

I could not stay another day to laugh, to love, to work or play,

Tasks left undone must stay that way.

I found that peace at the close of the day.

If my parting has left a void, Then fill it with remembered joy.

A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss

Ah, these things I, too, will miss.

Be not burdened with time of sorrow,

I wish for you the sunshine of tomorrow.

My life's been full, I savored much.

Good friends, good times, a loved one touched.

Perhaps my time seemed all too brief

Don't lengthen it now with undue grief

Lift up your heart and share with me.

God wanted me now, He set me free.

(Author unknown)

Mom, we want to say thank you for the gift of life and for a wonderful life. We know you are right where you want to be. We love you and will miss you until the day we meet again.

Copyright 2009 Roswell Daily Record

30 SEP 2008

John F. Phillips

Dear friends,

 We received the attached obituary in the mail today (Monday). John Phillips and his wife Mary played very important and special roles in our lives, for it was they who first introduced us. Dick was John's friend and squadron mate and Mary's brother, Hank Melton, was a friend of Helen's. It was Hank, God Bless him, who thought we were "meant for each other" and played "Cupid." He did a good job and, as they say, "the rest is history."

 We will always remember John as the very fine and honorable man he was. It was our privilege to have known him.


Dick and Helen

Click For Obituary

Info submitted by Dick Nemeth via Dale Kingsbury

08 SEP 2008

Thomas H. Gordon

Click For Obituary

Info submitted by Dick Sliz via Gordon Barnes

30 AUG 2008

Marvin Morris

I just received a phone call from Don Fergerson that Marvin Morris (1375th Flt. Eng) passed away on (SAT) 30 AUG 2008

Viewing will be 6-8 pm 1 SEP 2008 at Hall & Hall in Albany, Ga

Ph# 229-883-3864.

Tuesday Services in Andersonville Ga. near Americus, Ga.

Submitted By Ricky Morris(Son)

224 sandy Beach Rd.

Leesburg, Ga. 31763

15 AUG 2008

Billy H. Bryant

Billy H. Bryant, of Pahokee, FL, lost his battle with non-alcoholic cirrhosis of the liver on Friday, August 15, 2008. Billy served with the 338th SRS(55th SRW), 1370th PMG, and 1370th PMW. He was a Life Member of the AFPMA.

Info submitted by Jewell Ransom via Sully Nutt and Dale Kingsbury

26 JUL 2008

Dennis CounleyClick for full obituary

17 JUL 2008

Irma C. HughesClick for full obituary

She was a 25 year cancer survivor, and survived my father Earl T. Hughes, Capt, USAF Ret. who died of colon cancer in 1992.

I know that members of your organization were very important and special to both my parents.

Please pass on our loss to your members.


Harry Hughes, Lt Col, USAFR

Commander, 73d Airlift Squadron

4 JUN 2008

AL COHENClick for full obituary

Sad to say that today we were notified of the passing of Al Cohen, of Warminster, PA, on June 4th. He was C-130 navigator in Photo-mapping in Topeka, KS. He was a regular at the reunions and will be missed.

Dennis Davis

2 JUL 2008

Donovan B. ManifoldClick for full obituary

Submitted By Harry Woodfill, Aerial Photo on Donovan's B-17 crew back in the 1st Photo Squadron

22 MAY 2008


Alan Leroy Pettit, 70, of Torrington, formerly of Cheyenne, passed away May 22 at the Davis Hospice Center in Cheyenne.

Alan was born on July 24, 1937, to Ellis and Irvin Pettit on the family farm in Jewell County, Kan., just south of the Kansas-Nebraska state line.

He attended one-room country elementary schools near the family farm and graduated from Burr Oak High in Kansas, earning medals in track and field.

After attending Fort Hays State in Hays, Kan., for two years, he earned a degree in geodetic engineering from Ohio State University.

Alan entered the Air Force in 1959 and served for 22 years. His military career took him to Japan, the Marshall Islands, Saudi Arabia, Panama, New Guinea and a number of military bases in the U.S. prior to his retirement in Cheyenne. He then went into federal service with the Defense Mapping Agency and retired again in 1996.

Alan is survived by his wife, Marilyn of Torrington; a daughter and son-in-law, Stephanie (Stes) and Frank Stellpflug of Torrington; and son and daughter-in-law, Alan and Mary Pettit II of Calhoun, Ga.; three grandchildren, Chelsea Leigh Stellpflug, Frank G. Stellpflug IV and Alexandria Grace Pettit; sister, Faye Brown, of Montgomery, Minn.; brother, Paul Pettit, of Superior, Neb.; brother, Dr. Russell Pettit of Lubbock, Texas; brother, David Pettit of Mankato, Kan.; sister, Phyllis Schutte of Hastings, Neb.; and sister, Dr. Dixie West of Manhattan, Kan.; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Ellis and Irvin Pettit.

Memorial Services were at the First Baptist Church in Cheyenne with a reception to follow.

Honorary pallbearers were Audean Dyer, Vic Pfeifer, Edwin "Fritz" Friehauf, Al Wegner and Dan Corbin.

Julian Higgins

30 MAR 2008

Lewis B. Archer

I just got word that Lewis B. Archer died Mar 30 this year, in Tulsa, OK. He and I were in Engine Conditioning in the 1376th. We were on AST #7 in the P.I. together. We had our little country music band going there, and also back in Albany. I retrained into Nuclear Weapons in '61, and Lew got tapped to retrain into ground power I believe in '62. He was 73 or so at time of death. He was married to Jean, kids were Brian and Delia

Ed Weidig

28 FEB 2008



I have been informed that Colonel Ray Stratton passed away on Feb 28 of a stroke at age 74. There will be a memorial ceremony at the Hurlburt Chapel on Tuesday 4 March at 2PM with a get-together at the Hurlburt Soundside after the service. MG “Dick” Secord, USAF (Ret) will give the eulogy. Visitation will be from 6-8-PM tonight at the Chapel of Clary-Glenn Funeral Home in Defuniak Springs, FL. Condolences can be made on line at See today’s (Monday’s) Daily News for further details. Please feel free to spread the word to others. We have lost another Warrior.

Dale Kingsbury

Ray Edward Stratton


Ray Edward Stratton, 74, of Valparaiso, Fla., passed away Feb. 28, 2008, at home of an apparent stroke. Ray was born Feb. 25, 1934, in Houston, Texas, to Ray Edward Sr. and Lois Francis Stratton. He married the former Jan Murdock in Greenville, Ala., in 1970. Ray graduated from Texas A&M with degrees in oceanography, meteorology and psychiatry. On Jan. 26, 1956, Ray entered the United States Air Force and served in a variety of positions including instruc-tor pilot and forward air controller in Vietnam. He concluded his military career as commandant of the Air Force Special Operations School at Hurlburt Field, Fla., retiring after 30 years of service. His awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit with one Oak Leaf Cluster, the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Bronze Star Medal and several other awards attesting to his dedicated service to his nation. After his retirement from the Air Force, and a six-week vacation in Europe with Jan, Ray accepted an offer from Lockheed Martin's famous Skunk Works in Burbank, Calif. He served the corporation for 14 years in a variety of positions with the last being director of Lockheed Martin's Corporate Business Development office in Tampa, Fla. Ray is survived by Jan Stratton, his loving wife of 38 years, and eight children. Ray's faithful dog Bim was at his side at his time of death. Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, at Hurlburt Field Chapel. Retired Gen. Richard Secord will give the eulogy with full military honors. A reception will follow the Chapel service at the Soundside Club at Hurlburt Field. Inurnment will be at Barrancas National Cemetery, NAS Pensacola, Fla., at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial donations be made to Children in Crisis, P.O. Box 613 Shalimar, Fla., 32579 in memory of Ray Edward Stratton.

26 JAN 2008

Gordon L. St.Clair

Gordon L. St.Clair passed away on 25 January 2008 in Albany, Georgia. He was a Flight Engineer in the 338th SRS and 1371st M&C Sq.

Dale Kingsbury

Gordon L. St. Clair

ALBANY — Gordon L. (Joe) St. Clair died Saturday, January 26, 2008, at Georgia War Veteran’s Home in Milledgeville, GA. A graveside Memorial Service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, February 2, 2008, at Crown Hill Cemetery. Rev. Ray Levreault officiating.

“Joe” was born August 28, 1920, at Campbellsville, Kentucky to James and Susie St. Clair. He spent his early life in Columbus, GA as his father was a career military man, stationed at Fort Benning, GA during Joe‘s youth. He joined the Army Air Force and was a career military man, retiring from Turner Air Force Base in 1962, as a Master Sergeant, after 24 years of service. He had been a native of Albany since 1959 when he was transferred to Turner Air Force Base with the 1307th Photo Mapping Wing. He was a long time member of the Loyal Order of Moose, Lodge #1285 and the American Legion Post #30 in Albany. He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother, Jimmy St. Clair, and a sister, Betty Hubbard.

Survivors include his son, Robert G. St. Clair and wife, Markie; daughter, Jeanne Steen and husband, Steve, all of Metro Atlanta; granddaughters include Erin Holloway and Ryan St. Clair; grandsons are Stephen Steen of Dahlonega, GA and Sean Steen of Auburn, Alabama.

© 2008 The Albany Herald/Triple Crown Media

25 JAN 2008

William J."Bill" Gibbons

William J."Bill" Gibbons of Anchorage, Alaska passed away on 25 January 2008. Bill was a navigator with the 1371st M&C Sq. and ACGS. Among his survivors are his wife Elizabeth "Liz" Gibbons of Anchorage.

Dale Kingsbury

William Gibbons

Longtime Alaskan William J. "Bill" Gibbons, 73, died Jan. 25, 2008, at Providence Alaska Medical Center.

Bill was born April 19, 1934, in Louisville, Ky. After high school, he joined the U.S. Air Force, where he attended Officer Candidate School and Navigation School. Bill spent more than 28 years as a navigator in the Air Force. He was a Vietnam veteran and earned the National Defense Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with five devices, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Air Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with one oak leaf, and a Meritorious Service Medal.

In 1959, he married his wife, Elizabeth, and together they had five children, Mike, Deanna, Randy, Jody and Tony.

Bill and his family moved to Alaska in 1974. He retired as a lieutenant colonel from the Air Force and later retired from Alaska Housing Finance Corp.

Bill loved to spend time on his boat with family fishing for silver salmon in Resurrection Bay. He also enjoyed photography and birdwatching. He volunteered regularly for Fur Rondy.

Bill was a loving husband and father. He cared about people and was a great friend to all who knew him. Bill will be greatly missed.

He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; his daughter and son-in-law, Deanna Gibbons and Rob Price; his sons, Randy, Jody and Tony; and his three grandchildren, Katharine, Joseph and Michele Price. He was preceded in death by his oldest son, Michael Gibbons; and his mother, Amelia Gibbons.

Published in the Anchorage Daily News on 1/30/2008.

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