April 25, 2007

Duke Bandy, RIP (Update: Also Clint Thrasher, RIP)

I received an e-mail message from a CQ reader, Lee Bandy, who earlier had offered to assist me with my Gateway computer problems. I had replied that the problems seemed related to the hardware, but that I'd let him know if I needed anything else. Lee wrote me back this evening, and agreed to let me share this with all of you:

I want to apologize for not getting back to you.

I never actually expected you to respond. I was genuinely tickled when you responded, and called my father, as Captains Quarters is his favorite blog. I figured he would get a huge kick out of it.

That was the phone call no child ever wants to be a part of: LT Col Maurice ‘Duke’ Bandy USAF (Ret) 1930-2007

However, I would like to thank you for providing years worth of father/son conversations. Dad was a huge fan of “the blogs” and we would talk daily about the latest posts and news. Yours was always first on the list. It may seem like just another blog, but it meant much more to us.

Blogging is an odd business. One writes and writes about those items that provoke a reaction, in what seems like a relentlessly solitary effort. It isn't until people comment or e-mail that one knows a connection has been made with an audience, and sometimes the blogger never understands the depth of those connections. Hearing this from his son is a touching and humbling moment for me, and I'm blessed that Lee chose to share this story with me -- and allowed me to share it with you.

We have lost a member of our family here. Godspeed, Maurice "Duke" Bandy. Thank you for honoring us with your service and your presence. Please keep the Bandy family in your prayers, and send them your condolences in the comments section.

UPDATE: And we have another loss in the CQ family. The cousin of SoldiersMom, Clint Thrasher, was killed in a plane crash while serving in the Border Patrol. Please also add the Thrasher family to your prayers while they try to get more details, and offer thanks that the nation has fine men like Clint to protect us.


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Comments (13)

Posted by Mudhen of Carlsbad [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:15 PM

He is in our thoughts tonight.

You touch more people than you can ever know, and it isn't just a blog. It's a conversation. Our voices may be out of range for you to hear them, but we carry on our end of the conversation with friends and family.


Posted by Grim [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:20 PM

I had a similar experience earlier this week. The mother of a young man I'd written about wrote to thank me. I had no notion she read "Grim's Hall," but apparently she does.


Here's to Duke. I don't doubt he was a fine man, if only because he raised a son who cared so much for him.

Posted by CroolWurld [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:30 PM

God bless your dad, sir, and you, and your family. I hope every one of your youngsters learns to love himself, through your witness of his life and deeds.

Posted by Fight4TheRight [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:34 PM

The entire Bandy family is in my thoughts and prayers this evening.

Posted by Mr. Michael [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 9:26 PM

I've sent my Blessings along to Duke, and I hope those Angels whisking him along to Heaven pause long enough for them to catch up!

...and may our world be blessed by the Presence of more like him.

Posted by RBMN [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 10:43 PM

Thank you for your service Clint. Rest in peace sir. I hope thousands of new border agents will pick up your baton and keep running with it. Only 32 years old. That's way too soon for anybody.

Other version:

Border Patrol aircraft crashes on remote ranch
04/26/2007, Associated Press

A Border Patrol agent flying above the region in search of illegal immigrants was killed Wednesday when his plane crashed, officials said.

Clint Trasher, 32, died at the crash site on a ranch about 15 miles north of San Manuel, Border Patrol spokesman Oscar Saldana said. Trasher had been with the agency 10 years.

Authorities were still investigating why the plane crashed, Saldana said. Border Patrol helicopters and planes regularly patrol ranch land.

The Cessna 182 took off between 6 and 7 a.m. from McAllen-Miller International Airport, according to Phil Brown, the airport's director of aviation.

San Manuel is about 220 miles south of San Antonio.

Posted by Adjoran [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 26, 2007 12:52 AM

My thoughts and prayers go out to the bereaved. Bless the memory of the departed, and may their service to our country never be forgotten.

Posted by Jim [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 26, 2007 3:40 AM

So sorry to hear of both losses. Their families will be in my prayers.

Jim C

Posted by M. Simon [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 26, 2007 6:41 AM

My condolences to all who suffered losses.


I have been going through a number of difficulties this past year.

My readership is small and yet when ever I have asked for help my readers have been very generous.

One going so far as to offer me a place to live. Another buying me a brand new computer and a years worth of broadband.

The kindness of strangers has kept me going.

Posted by Fausta [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 26, 2007 7:25 AM

My heartfelt condolences.

Posted by SoldiersMom [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 26, 2007 9:44 AM

Thank you all for your consolences, but actually I was taken aback when I saw that the Capt. had posted Clint's death hear. I sent CE an email last night because I wanted him to know that there's much speculation amongst the family that Clint's plane had been shot down. The family has been told that it won't be decided for another three days if authorities are going to do an autopsy.

If an investigation reveals that the plane had been shot down, I'm not convinced that we'll ever be told. This is not something the Government would want widely circulated.

The family is devasted by the news.

Posted by RBMN [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 26, 2007 11:03 AM

Re: SoldiersMom at April 26, 2007 09:44 AM

I would think, that the NTSB would have to be involved in this case to determine the cause of the crash. They're the only ones with the expertise. And if there's a bullet hole in the fuselage, they'll find it. You may not hear about their report for a long time, but they'll go over it very closely to find the cause. Most important, is that the plane gets an autopsy.

Posted by Scott [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 27, 2007 7:53 AM

Done, and done. God rest both.