Honor Flight Veteran Randall Logsdon
Mr. Randall Logsdon has been selected by Nolin RECC as one of two veterans Nolin is sending on September’s Honor Flight. He was born and raised in Hart County about 5 miles from where he lives now in Sonora. He was the oldest of six children raised on the family farm.
After graduating from Hart County schools, he worked locally as a hod carrier. He was then drafted into the United States Army and completed basic training at Ft. Knox. After AIT (Advanced Individual Training) at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma, he was sent to serve in Vietnam in the 4th Infantry in July 1967.
While in Vietnam, Logsdon worked in Supply and Transportation. He drove supplies and troops at first and was promoted to Sgt. E-5 just 17 months after entering the Army, which was unusual. Moving across the countryside was a dangerous task, so Logsdon says that often they would have a tank running in front of the convoy in case of landmines.
Logsdon served in Vietnam during the deadly Tet Offensive. It was then that he says their base camp was hit for the first time. Logsdon recalls their camp being bombarded with rockets and mortar shells and taking shelter in a bunker they had built. “The next morning, we looked around and the barracks two or three away from ours were blown up,” says Logsdon. He adds that they were fortunate that they did not lose any lives that day. Randall notes that due to several accidents on post, the commander issued orders to lock up weapons at night. The first night of this new policy was the night of the attack on their camp.
Logsdon shares that there were some good memories during his service in Vietnam. After receiving canned milk during most of his tour, the addition of refrigerated milk which was delivered by plane allowed some on post to make ice cream (thanks to a large generator on post). He was also there when the Bob Hope Christmas Show came to Camp Enari near Pleiku in 1967. He remembers getting to see Raquel Welch and Barbara McNeir as part of the show. Having fulfilled his 2-year obligation, Sgt. Logsdon left Vietnam on July 4, 1968, and re-entered the United States the same date (due to time-zone difference).
After returning home from his miliary service, Logsdon worked as a brick mason and eventually opened his own brick laying business. During this time, he bought a farm near Flint Hill just prior to his marriage in 1969 to Willadean Copelin. After being a self-employed brick mason for 20 years then running a dairy farm, he became a full-time farmer and is still actively farming today.
Logsdon and his wife Willadean knew each other growing up and they married in May 1969. Wife Willadean worked at Time Finance Co. for three years prior to starting their family of three children. Today, the Logsdons have ten grandchildren and six great grandchildren, with a seventh on the way. The oldest of their grandchildren, Devon Woosley, is Nolin RECC’s Manager of Engineering.
Logsdon looks forward to his trip and, while he has spent a short time in the DC area, this will be his first experience getting to witness the national memorials in person. He will also get to experience something that most Vietnam veterans missed, a hero’s welcome home.