Elwyn DeWayne Whitsitt
Elwyn DeWayne Whitsitt
September 2, 1935 - June 12, 2018
Lt Col Elwyn “DeWayne” Whitsitt, USAF, Retired, age 82, passed away on Tuesday, June 12, 2018, in Olney, Texas. Funeral services will be at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, June 15, 2018, at the First United Methodist Church in Olney with Rev. Harrell Braddock, Jr., pastor, officiating. Interment with full military honors and Masonic Rites will follow at Restland Cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction of Lunn Funeral Home of Olney.
DeWayne was born on September 2, 1935 in Olney, Texas to the late John D. and Mildred M. (Smith) Whitsitt. After graduating from Olney High School in 1954, he enrolled at North Texas State College. He married Phyllis W. Campbell on April 19, 1957 in Archer City. He graduated from North Texas in 1958 with a B.S. Degree in Industrial Arts and Education. After graduation, he received a commission as 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. He entered Air Force pilot training and graduated in 1960. After advanced flight training, he was assigned as a pilot in KC-97 refueling tankers at Selfridge AFB, MI. The next four years he would be refueling bombers and standing cold war alert duty. In 1964, he was transferred to Pope AFB, NC. Captain Whitsitt’s primary duties were Instructor and Flight Examiner pilot in C-130 tactical airlift aircrafts. During his 6 ½ years at Pope AFB, his duties took him almost around the world and two tours of duty in Vietnam. During Vietnam, he flew 118 tactical combat support sorties and air reconnaissance missions and logged 432 combat flying hours. In 1970, Major Whitsitt was transferred to the 7th Special Operations Squadron, Ramstein AB, Germany. At Ramstein, he was a Squadron Aircraft Commander and Flight Commander of the Combat Talons. His squadron flew Special Operations MC-130 E Combat Talon (Black Bird) aircraft. Their primary missions were classified; however, the squadron was responsible for supporting Unconventional Warfare and the Special Forces missions of NATO. In 1974, he was transferred to Elgin AFB, FL. At Elgin, he was a test and evaluation manager at the Air Force Tactical Airlift Center. His duties were testing and evaluating airlift delivery techniques for the C-130 aircraft. In 1975, he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and transferred to Anderson AFB, Guam. At Guam, he was assigned as Air Operations Officer for the 54th Weather Reconnaissance Squadron. As Air Operations Officer, he managed all flight operations for Weather and Typhoon reconnaissance with the Pacific region. This unit flew special equipped WC-130 aircraft which were able to track typhoon storms and gather weather information. In 1976, he was assigned to Hurlburt AFB, FL as Air Operations Officer for the 8th Special Operations Squadron. The 8th SOS mission was world wide support of Unconventional Warfare and to train replacement crew members for Special Operations Squadrons. During his military career, Lt Col Whitsitt received the following Air Force Awards and Decorations: Command Pilot Wings, Air Force Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendations Medal with 2 oak leaf clusters, Air Force outstanding unit with 4 oak leaf clusters, Air Force Combat Readiness Medal with 1 oak leaf cluster, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with 4 Campaign Stars, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm, and Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.
On May 31, 1979, after twenty years of service, Lt Col Whitsitt retired from the U.S. Air Force and returned to Olney. He worked at his family owned business, Olney Oil Well Cementing Co. until 1984 when he started his own business, Whitsco, Inc. His primary business was oil well treatment and stimulation. He fully retired in 1998. DeWayne was a past president of the Olney Lions Club, a Director of the Olney Chamber of Commerce, and was instrumental in moving the cornerstone of the Original High School from the Masonic Lodge to the Olney Library. He was 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason, Young County Lodge #485 A.F. & A.M. where he recently received his pin for 60 years of service and a member of the Maskat Temple Shrine for 50 years.
DeWayne is survived by his wife, Phyllis Whitsitt of Olney; three sons: John D. Whitsitt and wife Kathryn, David A. Whitsitt, and Steven D. Whitsitt and wife LaShawna all of Olney; three grandchildren: Tyler Whitsitt and wife Wendy of Olney, Trevor Whitsitt of Olney and Ashli Reed and husband Dwayne of Westover; one step-granddaughter, Olivia Brandt of Olney; one brother, Terry Whitsitt and wife Sally of Wichita Falls; and one sister, Johnnie Hudson of Charleston, South Carolina.
Family visitation will be Thursday, June 14, 2018 from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Lunn Funeral Home in Olney.
Memorials may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105.
Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.lunnfuneralhome.com.