Walter B. "Buck" Staudt
Funeral services for GEN. WALTER B. "Buck" STAUDT, 83, formerly of Houston. TX will be held May 1 at 10 a.m in San Marcos TX. Staudt died Thursday in New Braunfels TX. He is survived by his sister, Dorothy Staudt Walker, Uvaide; a son, Walter Staudt Jr. and his wife Denise, Leon Springs; a daughter, Sue Gabel of San Antonio TX; three grandchildren and a great-grandson. Scaudt was a retired Brigadier General of the Texas Air National Guard where he last served as chief of staff, 1969-1972. He then was an executive in marketing with Conoco to 1986.
Gen. Walter Buckner â€˜Buck' Staudt (4.30.06)
Funeral services with military honors for Gen. Walter Buckner â€œBuckâ€ Staudt, 83, will be held Monday, May 1,2006 at 10 a.m. at Pennington Funeral Home in San Marcos TX. Burial will be in the San Marcos City Cemetery. The Rev. Grover Needham of First Baptist Church, New Braunfels, TXwill officiate. Visitation time will be Sunday, 4-7 p.m., at Pennington.
Gen. Staudt died Thursday in a New Braunfels Texas hospital.
He is survived by his sister, Dorothy Staudt Walker of Uvalde; a son, Walter B. Staudt Jr. of Leon Springs; a daughter, Sue Evelyn Gabel of San Antonio; three grandchildren, Holly Gabel, Billy Staudt and wife Lisa, and Johnny Staudt and wife Morgan, of San Antonio; and great-grandson Collin Staudt.
He was preceded in death by his wife Georgia Fee Staudt, his parents William Alfred â€œBillâ€ Staudt and Leah Maud (Buckner) Staudt, and a brother William â€œLittle Billyâ€ Staudt.
Staudt was a retired Brigadier General of the Texas Air National Guard where he last served as chief of staff, 1969-1972, responsible for the overall supervision of operations and training for the Texas ANG. Following that, he served as an executive in the marketing division of Continental Oil Co. from 1972-1986.
Staudt was born in San Marcos TX on Nov. 3, 1922. He graduated from San Marcos High School in 1940 where he played with best friends Thomas A. â€œBubboâ€ Coers, J.M. Cape and the late Gene Phillips on a Rattler football team that lost by only one point to eventual state champion Austin High School.
He attended Southwest Texas State Teachers College (Texas State Univ.) for a year before joining the U.S. Army Air Corps as a cadet and beginning a distinguished career as an Air Force pilot.
Staudt served as an instructor pilot during WW II and taught scores of students, including a number of Chinese. After the war he returned to civilian life as a rancher near San Marcos and worked with his father in their engine rebuilding shop, later moving to Del Rio for relocation of that shop. During this time he came out of the Air Force Reserve (inactive) to keep his skills sharp as a pilot with the Texas Air National Guard.
He returned to active duty with the Texas ANG in 1950, and after checkout in the F-84, served in the Korean War flying 75 combat missions and logging more than 180 combat hours in the F-84. On his 75th mission, Nov. 3, 1951, he was leading a flight of four F-84E jet fighters on a rail-cut mission. Citations for the Distinguished Flying Cross and Purple Heart, stemming from that mission, stated:
â€œÅ Capt. Staudt displayed outstanding leadership and skill by destroying the assigned target with no loss to his flight. He was opposed by intense anti-aircraft fire, automatic weapons fire, and enemy aircraft, but after destroying the assigned target he ascended to engage the enemy jet fighters. Through his knowledge of tactics, he was able to safely get his flight out of the intense opposition area. On returning to his base, his flight was called upon to render aid to another flight being attacked by enemy jet fighters, and Capt. Staudt immediately responded to the call, dispersing the enemy. One friendly aircraft was lost, and Capt. Staudt, upon covering the downed airman, showed complete disregard for his personal safety in attempting to give the friendly pilot cover.â€
Ground fire riddled Staudt's aircraft and disabled it. He was able to nurse the fighter away from land and bailed out over the Yellow Sea, west of Chinam-po. Injured in the bail-out, Staudt was able to use a mirror to signal a seaplane which rescued him.
Back with the Air Guard following the war, his unit was flying propeller-driven F-51 Mustang fighters when they were called on to fly the battle scenes in the 1956 movie â€œBattle Hymnâ€ starring Rock Hudson, Dan Duryea, Don Defore, and Martha Hyer. Staudt was the â€œdoubleâ€ who flew several of the scenes supposedly piloted by Hudson.
Later, the 149th Fighter Group, Texas ANG, based at Kelly AFB, became a part of the Air Defense Command and was assigned F-102 supersonic all weather interceptors. Staudt became operations officer for that unit (1964-1969) and then commander of the 147th Fighter Group at Ellington AFB, Houston (1969-1972) before his promotion to chief of staff of the Texas ANG at Camp Mabry, Austin.
In addition to the Purple Heart and the Distinguished Flying Cross, Gen. Staudt received a number of other decorations and service awards including the Air Medal with one oak leaf cluster. He was qualified to fly a number of military aircraft including the P-40, P-47, F-51, F-80, F-84, F-86, F-102, C-47 and C-54.
Pall bearers will be his cousins Walter L. â€œBudâ€ Buckner, Tom Buckner, Kay Buckner, Bill Graham, and sons of cousins Gene Buckner and Bill Buckner. Honorary pallbearers are Thomas A. Coers and J.M. Cape.
Arrangements by Pennington Funeral Home, San Marcos, 353-4311.