More detail on this person: AUSTIN, SR. William David Austin, Sr. - 1931 - 2008 - William David Austin, Sr., age 77, lost his short but courageous battle with cancer and died peacefully at home on September 29, 2008. Dave or "Cap'n Dave" as he was affectionately known was born in Opalousas, LA on April 10, 1931, then grew up in Pensacola, FL. He joined the Army in 1948 at the age of 16 and retired after 20 years at the age of 36. During his military career, he was a recruiting Sgt., paratrooper, helicopter pilot and instruments instructor, served in Greenland, Germany, Korea, Vietnam and numerous states, retiring with a rank of Chief Warrant Officer 3. He was the recipient of the WWII Victory Medal, The Good Conduct Medal, The Air Medal, The VietNam Service Medal, The Republic of VietNam Campaign Medal, The National Defense Service Medal, as well as the Army Commendation Medal. He loved to fly and went on to a second 20 year career with ERA Helicopters out of Anchorage, Alaska. He transferred to ERA's Gulf Division and flew crew changes to the oil rigs all along the coast, then worked out of the Rowan Oil/ ERA corporate hanger at Hobby Field in Houston, TX. When he retired the second time, he returned to the Pensacola area. For several years he managed a condo in Orange Beach and was a well known face and friend to many at the Flora-Bama. His final home was in Lillian, Alabama. To his children he was a hero, providing them with a comfortable life filled with travel and many adventures. Truly he was "the wind beneath our wings"! To his friends, he was generous and quick with a joke, always fun to be around. He was an avid race fan and car collector, loved to dance, bowl, hunt and fish and generally have a good time. He is preceded in death by his father, Benjamin Franklin Austin and his mother, Josephine Morrow Youmans. Left to cherish his memory are his loving children: son, Wm. David "Chip" Austin, Jr., of Lillian, AL and daughters, Vivian Reed (David) of Frisco, TX and Darlene Owens (David) of Pace, FL; his grandson, Joseph "Jac" Combs (Patricia) of Aurora, CO; great-granddaughters, Allison Combs and Cassandra Miller. He is also survived by his brother, Benjamin A. Austin (Laureta), a lifelong resident of Pensacola, and an aunt, Louise Austin Wallace of Tallassee, AL as well as six beloved nieces, numerous cousins and other relatives. The family would like to give special thanks to Covenant Hospice of Daphne for their support, care and guidance in his final days. Visitation will be held Thursday, October 2, 2008 at Faith Chapel Funeral Home South, 100 Beverly Parkway, from 5:00 pm until 7:00 pm. Graveside services will be held outside Opp, AL at Beulah Cemetery on Friday, October 3, 2008 at 11:00 am.
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Date posted on this site: 11/02/2023
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