1LT Joe W. Goss was a VHPA member who died after his tour in Vietnam on 08/25/2018 at the age of 74.2 from Cancer
Tracy, CA
Flight Classes 68-16 and 68-26
Date of Birth 06/19/1944
Served in the U.S. Army
This information was provided by Cammy Jo Costa

More detail on this person: Joe Wayne Goss was born June 19, 1944 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the son of Joseph Walter and Della Opal (Bowles) Goss. A member of the Miami Indian Tribe, he was the younger brother of Patricia, Jack, and Koleta. He grew up in Vincennes, Indiana and Tahlequah, Oklahoma. He passed away peacefully at home in San Diego, California with his daughters at his side on August 25, 2018. Joe attended Tahlequah High School and worked for his uncle, George Goss, in the construction business from 1962-1967. In 1963, Joe married Carmie Jay of Tahlequah. To this union were born Cammy Jo, Candice, and Carey. Joe joined the National Guard at age 19 and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant prior to entering the United States Army in 1967. The following year, he attended Rotary Helicopter courses in Texas and Georgia, and received his Army Helicopter Wings in 1968, graduating in the top ten percent of his class. He then went on to Chinook helicopter school. In 1969, he was sent to Vietnam and was discharged from the Army in 1973. While serving, he earned the rank of Captain. Joe also earned numerous honors including; the National Defense Service Medal, Army Aviator Badge, Marksmanship Badge (.45 caliber pistol), Sharpshooter Badge with Rifle Bar (M-16), Air Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Bronze Star Medal, Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Vietnam Civil Action Honor Medal and Army Commendation Medal. While in Vietnam, he flew at least 1,000 hours in combat missions. In 1969, he received a Rescue Citation in recognition of meritorious service. The citation reads, "Captain Joe W. Goss, who on 30 March 1969, while serving as the pilot of a CH-47 (Chinook) helicopter, rescued the crew of a downed aircraft from possible capture or injury by enemy forces in the Mekong Delta of South Vietnam." Joe once told a friend that, in Vietnam he flew through the hills and valleys in such a way that the enemy couldn't hear the bird coming until it was right on top of them. After his discharge from the military, Joe moved his family to Omaha, Nebraska, where he took a job as a pilot for the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice in 1974 from the University of Nebraska in Omaha. He was certified as a commercial pilot and instructor, flying single and multi-engine airplanes. He worked for Aergo, Inc., as a pilot and instructor from 1973-1975. In 1975, Joe embarked on a distinguished 26-year career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He was assigned to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota from 1975 to 1978, and later was assigned to Puerto Rico, San Francisco, and San Diego, where he retired in 2001. He was on the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team, Bank Robbery Squad, Drug Squad and conducted covert surveillance. Joe also certified other FBI agents who earned pilot and helicopter licenses. During his career, he flew more than 16,000 hours while serving in Vietnam and working for the FBI. Following retirement, he continued to teach as a flight instructor and certify pilots. Joe lived a life worthy of respect and admiration by all who knew him. He was courageous with the devoted heart of a servant. He had strength of character and was a man of honor, moved by a strong motivation to serve his family and his nation. Many might run from a fight, but without hesitation, Joe ran toward it. A simple boy from the foothills of Oklahoma, he enlisted early and dedicated his life to his country. From the National Guard to the FBI, he was known for his ability to approach situations directly and with determination. His family will remember him as a humble man who enjoyed life to the fullest. Joe Wayne Goss was preceded in death by his parents and two half-siblings, Billy Joe Goss and Donald Gene Goss. He is survived by his daughters Cammy Jo Goss-Costa (an investigative specialist for the FBI), and her husband, David Costa, of Tracy, California; Candice Goss-Smedsrud (a teacher at San Diego Unified School District, who holds a Masters of Education) and her husband, Richard Smedsrud, of San Diego, California; and Carey Goss (wildlife refuge specialist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Malheur National Wildlife Refuge) of Burns, Oregon; three grandchildren, Bryce Walter Harding-Goss, Garrett Jay Bodily-Goss, and Cara Jo Bodily-Goss, all of Burns, Oregon; Carmie Jay, his wife of 27 years, of San Ramon, California; Sheri Buckaloo, his wife of ten years, of Northern California; his brother, Jack Goss, of Tahlequah, Oklahoma; his sisters Patricia Norris of Wichita, Kansas and Koleta Goss of Tahlequah, Oklahoma; and many nieces, nephews, and friends. Joe will be laid to rest at the Miramar National Cemetery in San Diego in a private service. A celebration of life service will be held in the San Francisco Bay Area in spring of 2019.

Burial information: Miramar National Cemetery

This information was last updated 09/14/2018

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Date posted on this site: 06/15/2024

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