T/SGT John Earl South, 457th TAS 1966
(Age 80) — Passed away on April 13, 2005, in Spokane, Washington. John was born in Little Sioux, Iowa on January 22, 1924, and graduated from Blencoe High School. He served in the Navy from 1942 - 1945 as an aircraft mechanic and turret gunner in a TBM Avenger, and survived the sinking of the USS St. Lo during the battle of Leyte Gulf, the first U.S. ship lost to a kamikaze. In 1999, he was placed on the Navy's Enlisted Men's Roll of Honor. John married JoAnn Simmons, the love of his life, on January 12, 1948. He re-joined the Navy in 1956, and in 1958 joined the Air Force. He continued to serve with distinction, including a tour in Vietnam, and retired in 1972. He is survived by his wife, JoAnn; three sons, Randy, Rick and Michael; three grandchildren, Randall, Kelsey and Kadi; one brother, Kenny; and six sisters, Guyla, Anita, Florence, Phyllis, Marietta and Beverley.