In Memoriam

Mike Caudill

Elmon Cleveland Caudill, II

On 29 November 1970 Lt Elmon (Mike) C. Caudill, II, Class of 1968 and former member of the 12th cadet squadron, was reported missing when the C-123 aircraft, on which he was a passenger, crashed 10-15 miles south of Cam Ranh Bay AB. His status was changed to deceased on 17 December 1970. Lt Caudill is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Elmon Caudill. His funeral was held at the USAF Academy on 30 December 1970.

A brief note about Elmon C. Caudill --

During doolie year in "Fightin' Fourth" Elmon was my last roommate of the year (I had about 5 other roommates but they all washed out -- Fightin' Fourth was not a particularly pleasant place to be for our class).

I remember Elmon being tall, really skinny, and gangly so he didn't quite fit "the image." but Elmon, in spite of taking more than his share of attention from the upper class due to his wispy stature, was a fountain of knowledge about Air Force aircraft. Elmon also introduced me to the "Doc" Smith Lensman series and Ian Fleming's 007 books.

I didn't go to the same UPT base as Elmon but I am pretty sure he graduated at the top of his UPT class and received a fighter assignment (F-100?). Those who remember the drought of fighter assignments for our class know just how difficult it was to get a fighter.

I must confess a little secret pleasure when I heard my former gawky, uncoordinated roommate finally hit his stride in pilot training.

But then, after Elmon put in a year of combat in fighters he gets on a C-123 that is going to take him to his freedom bird home and the idiot flying the C-123 decides to fly into a hard cloud.

Elmon deserved better,
Allen Dyer

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USAFA Cemetery

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