Larry Eli Caison
Lieutenant Colonel Larry Eli Caison (USAF Retired), 52, was killed in an aircraft crash in Bay County near Panama City, Fla., on Dec. 18, 2013. He was born at Eglin Air Force Base to Larry and Lorie Caison on Oct. 30, 1961.
Lt. Col. Caison was flying from West Palm Beach to Destin to be with his family for Christmas. Enroute, the single engine plane he was piloting lost power and crashed one mile short of an emergency landing attempt at Sandy Creek air field.
He was preceded in death by his father Larry Foard Caison in 2009. He is survived by his mother, Lorie Caison of Destin; his sister, Lisa Branham of Chesapeake, Va.; former wife, Nancy Caison, and their daughter, Loren Caison, and son, Owen Caison of Shalimar; his niece, Jessica Bullock of Newport News, Va.; and sons, Keaton Thomasson and Dillon Thomasson of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
Lt. Col. Caison is a graduate of Kecoughtan High School in Hampton, Va., in 1979 and the Virginia Military Institute in 1983. Lt. Col. Caison retired from the USAF in 2006 after 23 years of service. First he was a navigator and then convinced the Air Force to send him to pilot training. He piloted the B-1 bomber for the Strategic Air Command and C-130 Combat Talon for the Special Operations Command. His service included duty at McCord AFB in Tacoma, Washington; Kadena Air Force Base in Okinawa, Japan; Ellsworth AFB in Rapid City, South Dakota; Hurlburt Field in Fort Walton Beach and the Pentagon.
Lt. Col. Caison was president of Grey Aviation, a company in Destin that he founded after retiring from the USAF. Grey Aviation is a small company that provides airborne surveillance and special mission capability to U.S. and foreign military and other government agencies. He also founded and owned Grey Tactical Outfitters in Destin.
Lt. Col. Caison had many interests. He coached high school wrestling. He kept a healthy regimen of exercise with running and weight lifting the mainstays. He enjoyed riding his Harley Davidson motorcycle, travel and a good cigar. He was a terrific pilot. Mostly he loved and enjoyed being with his family, who will miss him.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Dec. 27 at Shalimar United Methodist Church, 1 Old Ferry Road, Shalimar. The Rev. Dr. Larry Bryars will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, please make a gift to Wounded Warrior Project, 4899 Belfort Road, Suite 300, Jacksonville, FL 32256.