Lt. Colonel T.C. Fehrenbach with his son Cadet Theron Carl Fehrenbach II in this undated photo. (Special to the American Press)
Matt Duhon, Southwest Louisiana Veterans Home administrator, speaks Thursday as the Louisiana Honor Medal was posthumously awarded to First Lieutenant Theron C. Fehrenbach II. Accepting the honor were Fehrenbach's widow Jeanne Williams and his father, Lieutenant Colonel Theron C. Fehrenbach, far right. (Lance Traweek / American Press)
Last Modified: Friday, July 27, 2012 4:24 PM
JENNINGS — More than four decades after her husband, Air Force 1st Lt. Theron C. Fehrenbach II, was killed flying over Vietnam, Jeanne Williams accepted a Louisiana Honor Medal on his behalf Thursday at the Southwest Louisiana War Veterans Home.
“There is always a special place in my heart for him, even though it has been 42 years,” Williams said. “To see him honored at any time means a great deal to me. It reminds me of how proud I am of him — and what he has done for the country.”
Fehrenbach, of Lafayette, graduated from the Air Force Academy in June 1968, received his pilot wings a year later and was assigned to fly a C-7A Caribou in Vietnam.
On April 6, 1970, his aircraft was struck by North Vietnamese anti-aircraft fire near Dak To, killing him and two other crewmen. He was posthumously awarded the Silver Star.
“On that date, as a C-7A Squadron Pilot, Lieutenant Fehrenbach flew his aircraft through a heavy barrage of hostile anti-aircraft fire in order to airdrop food, medical supplies, and ammunition to the occupants of a besieged special forces camp,” reads the award citation.
“Realizing the critical need for the emergency resupply materials, Fehrenbach, with complete disregard for his personal safety, flew through an intensive hail of ground fire to complete the airdrop of the vitally needed emergency supplies.”
Accompanying Williams in accepting the Louisiana Honor Medal was Fehrenbach’s father, retired Air Force Lt. Col. Theron C. Fehrenbach.
Matt Duhon, veterans home administrator, said Louisiana is the only state that has a formal program to recognize, honor and thank its veterans. The medal program was authorized by law in 2008.
Fehrenbach’s body is interred at Consolata Cemetery in Lake Charles.
Posted By: Roxanne Dally Wells On: 7/28/2012
Congratulations, to Lt. Fehrenbach and to you, Jeanne! I know you must be proud!