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Lt. Col. Silver C. Chisum

Obituary for Lt. Col. Silver C. Chisum

October 7, 1927 - January 5, 2018
Austin, Texas | Age 90

Obituary

Lt. Col. USAF (Ret) Silver "Chis" Chisum of Austin, Texas, passed away January 5, 2018, at the age of 90.

Silver Chisum is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Billie Chisum; their four children: Carolyn Sweeney and husband Kevin, Michael Chisum, Patricia Looney, and Randall Chisum and wife Cindy; six grandchildren: Amber Harrison and husband James, Caitlin Taylor and husband Michael, Laura Chisum, Janna Shepherd and husband Scotty, Daniel Chisum, and Elissa Thomasson and husband Bryce; and three great-grandchildren: Courtney Harrison, Shona Shepherd, and Edward Shepherd.

Lt. Col. Chisum served our nation in the US military for over 30 years, including the US Navy, US Marines, and US Air Force.

Silver Chisum joined the US Navy as a naval corpsman in 1945 and was assigned to the USS Missouri. In 1946-1947, Silver participated in Operation High Jump, which established a research base in Antarctica, Little America IV.

Silver received his commission with the US Air Force through the ROTC program at Baylor University in 1948. He was called on to active duty because of the Korean War. In 1953, he earned his pilot's wings. He graduated Baylor University in 1955 with a bachelor's degree in psychology.

From 1953-1955, Silver flew fighter aircraft, including F86 and F80s for the TAC (Tactical Air Command). From 1955-1970, Silver was assigned to MAC (Military Airlift Command), and piloted cargo planes (C124, C130, and C47) in and out of Asia and Vietnam during two tours of duty.

From 1970-1971, Silver served as the Squadron Commander for the 18th SOS (Special Operations Squadron) out of Da Nang Airbase, Vietnam. He flew night interdiction missions in the AC119K gunship. During this time, Silver earned the Distinguished Flying Cross when he successfully piloted his aircraft back to the base, after receiving heavy damage from anti-aircraft fire and losing engine power. Upon later recalling the incident, Silver gave testimony that the astounding escape from a fiery crash was solely to be credited to a miracle of God, and not to his own skill. Upon his return, Silver transferred to Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, where he was instrumental in starting the Social Actions Program. Silver retired from the US Air Force in 1978.

Lt. Col. Chisum earned numerous awards and medals during his military career including:

Distinguished Flying Cross (18th SOS Vietnam)
Bronze Star
Air Medal with Two Oak Leaves
Air Force Accommodation Medal (One Oak Leaf)
Air Force Outstanding Unit Medal
Combat Readiness Medal
American Theater Campaign Medal
World War II Victory Medal
National Defense Service Medal (with One Star)
Antarctica Service Medal (Operation High Jump)
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (Two Stars)
Vietnam Service Medal (Four Stars)
Air Force Longevity Award (Four Oak Leaves)
Air Force Reserve Medal
Small Arms Expert Ribbon

Silver enjoyed football and was an avid Dallas Cowboys fan. He had divided loyalties between University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University as his sons each attended a different school.

Silver loved to swim, especially at the beach while the family was stationed in Hawaii. His children have many wonderful memories of Fort DeRussy Beach in Honolulu, and swimming out to the anchored platform with their dad as each of them became stronger swimmers.

Silver had an appreciation of music, and enjoyed listening to Luciano Pavarotti and the Three Tenors but was particularly fond of Willie Nelson songs of any kind.

He had a huge sweet tooth, as any of his friends will attest, most often satisfied with chocolate.

Silver enjoyed playing pool, teaching his grandchildren how to play, repairing pool cues, and watching Western movies. He avidly studied the Bible, especially in his retirement.

Silver was a member of High Pointe Baptist Church, often arriving early on Sunday mornings to open the church, make coffee, and set out water for the pastor and song director.

Visitation will be held Friday, January 12, 2018, from 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm, at Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home, 3125 N. Lamar Blvd.

Services are scheduled for Saturday, January 13, 2018, 11:00 am, at High Pointe Baptist Church, 12030 Dessau Rd., Pastor Juan Sanchez officiating. Burial with military honors will follow at Austin Memorial Park Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made in Silver's name to Meals on Wheels Central Texas or Mobile Loaves and Fishes. The family extends a special thank you to the staff and caregivers at Buckner Villas for their devotion and loving care, and Regina Graham of Hospice of Austin for her compassionate, professional care in the final weeks of Silver's life.

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Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home North

3125 N Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX 78705
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