Sgt Randy Joe Gillespie

Sgt Randy Joe Gillespie

Colorado Springs, El Paso County, Colorado, USA
Death 9 Jul 2007 (aged 44)
Herat, Afghanistan
Burial Coaldale, Fremont County, Colorado, USA
Memorial ID 20397853 View Source
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Master Sgt. Randy J. Gillespie of Litchfield Park, Ariz., died July 9, 2007. He was born June 23, 1963, in Colorado Springs to Joann and Edwin Gillespie.

My mother and I came to know Randy throught he sending of care packages to him that he shared with his unit. After his passing, I contacted his mother and family and shared our friendship with them. He was a lovely human being and someone I am pleased to have known in my lifetime. I have had contact with several of his friends and everyone thought so much of Randy. He left his thumbprint on many. It was requested that I manage his memorial so here I am, carrying that out.

Master Sgt. Gillespie was a fuels specialist for the 56th Logistics Readiness Squadron, Luke Air Force Base, Ariz. He was responsible for a fleet of 27 refueling vehicles valued at $4.1 million, enabling movement of 48 million gallons of jet fuel annually in direct support of 191 F-16s and the largest fighter wing in the Air Force. Gillespie enlisted in the Air Force in March 1983. After basic training, he attended three months of technical training at Chanute AFB, Illinois, to become a fuels specialist.

His responsibilities included fuel procurement, storage and distribution to for aircraft and ground fuel requirements. Following technical school, he was assigned to Royal Air Force Lakenheath in the United Kingdom. Within three months Gillespie was deployed to Beruit, Lebanon, to assist in recovery operations after a terrorist bomb attack.

It was the first of 16 career deployments. In August 1985, he was transferred to Hill AFB, Utah, where he met and married Lisa. Two of his three sons were born during this assignment.

At Hill AFB, Sgt. Gillespie served in a myriad of fuels positions including deployment to Puerto Rico in support of Drug Interdiction Task Force Alpha. In 1993, he was assigned to Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota, where he was mobile shift supervisor in fuels operations supporting the 28th Bomb Wing. Highlights of the assignment were deployments to the Drug Interdiction Task Force Bravo in Soto Cano, Honduras; Operation Southern Watch, Al Dafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates and Operation Provide Comfort, Ramstein AB, Germany. Gillespie left South Dakota in 1997 for Lajes Field, Azores, Portugal, where he took over as the NCOIC, Preventative Maintenance in the 65th Supply Squadron. Other duties included the NCOIC Bulk Storage where he oversaw the largest fuel storage area in the Air Force and was recognized as the 1999 Fuels Flight NCO Professional Provider of the Year. At Lajes Field, Sgt. Gillespie deployed to Prince Sultan AB, Saudi Arabia, in support of Operation Southern Watch. In 2000, Gillespie arrived at Luke AFB, Ariz., where he was NCOIC of six different sections in the Fuels Management Flight, making him one of the most knowledgeable NCOs in the flight.

His contributions led to the flight being named Best Fuels Management Flight in the Air Force in 2005. He attended the additional duty first sergeant seminar and spent several months as acting first sergeant for the squadron.

Deployments at Luke include Operation Bright Star, Beni Suef, Egypt; Operation Enduring Freedom, Shaik Isa AB, Bahrain; Bagram AB, Afghanistan; Ganci AB, Kyrgzistan; Herat AB, Afghanistan; Operation Iraqui Freedom, Prince Sultan AB, Saudi Arabia and Baghdad, Iraq.

Major awards and decorations include Bronze Star (posthumous), Purple Heart (posthumous), Air Force Combat Action (posthumous), Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal (2 OLC), Air Force Achievement Medal (1 OLC); Meritorious Unit Award, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor (3 OLC), Air Force Organizational Excellence Award (2 OLC), National Defense Service Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal (one device), Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal; Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Service Medal, Air Force Overseas Ribbon Short, Air Force Overseas Ribbon Long, Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon (with gold frame) and Small Arms Expert Marksmanship (1 device).

He is survived by his wife, Lisa, and their children, Cory, Cris, Ethan and Amanda; mother Jo Ann Gillespie of Pueblo; father, Edwin Gillespie of Coaldale; brothers, Rick Gillespie of Pueblo, Roger Gillespie of Pueblo and Tech. Sgt. Ronald Gillespie of Colorado Springs; and grandmothers, Catherine Gillespie of Cañon City and Evelyn Walter of Wheatland, Wyoming.

Randy's name has been attached to several buildings and streets on military posts. His legacy will live on.

Corrections/additions by Zen. If you have anything to add to this memorial, whether text or photos, additions or corrections, please upload or contact me.

Family Members

  • Maintained by: Zen
  • Originally Created by: Sue
  • Added: 11 Jul 2007
  • Find a Grave Memorial 20397853
  • Zen
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Sgt Randy Joe Gillespie (23 Jun 1963–9 Jul 2007), Find a Grave Memorial ID 20397853, citing Coaldale Cemetery, Coaldale, Fremont County, Colorado, USA ; Maintained by Zen (contributor 46892144) .