LOKEY, Lt. Col. James T. USAF Ret.|
Sept. 30, 1925-April 25, 2014
James Thomas Lokey "Tom" was born in Walter, OK on Sept. 30, 1925. In 1930 his family moved to Waxahachie, TX and, later to Lubbock, TX. He graduated from Lubbock High School in 1943. He joined the United States Military on Sept. 13, 1943, enlisting and honorably serving in the US Army Air Corps./US Air Force. He was a member of the 28th Bomber Group, 404th Bomber Squadron. Tom was a crew member during 11 combat missions in a B-24 Liberator bomber over the enemy occupied Kurile Islands as a top turret 50 cal. machine gunner. On one mission his plane was shot down and crashed in Siberia, Russia and Tom was listed as MIA. On April 27, 1995 Tom's military records were corrected to officially recognize the time between May 15, 1945 and Aug. 24, 1945 that he and his fellow B24 crew members were prisoner's of war in a Russian detention camp.
Tom returned to Lubbock in ROTC and graduated from Texas Tech University with a degree in Accounting. On March 20, 1946 Tom married Dorothy Jean Whiteside of Waxahachie, TX, his wife of 68 years. On May 1, 1951 Tom was recalled to Active Service as an officer and was stationed in French Morocco during the Korean War.
Tom was stationed at Mountain Home AFB in Idaho during the Vietnam War, where he was a Briefing Officer and Command Pilot in the Strategic Air Command (SAC) and flew 11 B-52 sorties over Vietnam . While in Idaho Tom and his wife, Dot loved to hunt. Although Tom never achieved what he considered the "ultimate" Elk or goose, they did return home with many deer and game birds. In addition to hunting, he enjoyed training the labrador retrievers that accompanied him on hunts. While in Idaho he also served as an Explorer Scout Leader for more than 10 years.
During his military career he flew B-24, B-25, B-47 and B-52.
Tom retired from his distinguished military career in 1971 from the US Air Force as a Nuclear Weapons Officer, Air Operations Staff, Special Operations Group, 8th Air Force HQ ("The Mighty Eighth") stationed at Mather AFB, Sacramento, CA and moved his family to Austin, TX. Tom's distinguished military career and selfless dedication to his service to the United States cannot be adequately put into words. He was a member of "The Greatest Generation" whose members deserve the utmost respect and appreciation for their sacrifices and service to our country and to us as American citizens. Tom's military awards include; Asiatic Pacific Campaign medal with 1 bronze star, American Campaign medal, WWII Victory medal, National Defense Service medal with 1 bronze star, Air Force Longevity Service Award with 4 bronze oak leaf clusters, Presidential Unit Citation with 1 bronze oak leaf cluster, Air Force Small Arms Expert ribbon, Europe-Africa-Middle Eastern Campaign medal, Vietnam Service medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign medal, Air Force Outstanding Unit award, Air Medal with 3 bronze oak leaf clusters, Air Force commendation medal with 1 bronze oak leaf cluster, Army Good Conduct Medal, Armed Forces Reserve medal, and Prisoner of War medal.
His Air Force Wing sets include; Combat Crew, Enlisted Air Crew, Aerial Gunner wings, Pilot wings, Senior Pilot wings, and his most prized Command Pilot wings.
He was the Auditor for Austin National Bank and earned his Masters Degree in Banking from the University of Wisconsin. After retiring from Austin National Bank, he worked for Joe Long as an Auditor of several local banks in the Austin area and taught Auditing classes at Austin Community College.
Tom was a very active member in the Austin Downtown Founder Lions Club where he served as President from '86-'87 and District Governor from '91-'92. During this time, he and his wife Dot had the opportunity to travel to Australia, New Zealand, and Hong Kong, and also took an Alaskan cruise. He was a life time member of the Lions Eye Bank and the Texas Lions Club, as well as Camp Director from '95-'97 for the Lions Camp for children with physical disabilities, type 1 diabetes, and cancer.
In his free time Tom enjoyed golfing and horseback riding.
Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Karl and Lenora (Dugan) Lokey, brother William Sam Lokey, sister Oma Jean Mitchell, son-in-law Jerrold Shepard, grandson Lawrence Jeffrey Stanard, and great grandson Shawn Michael Scoggins.
He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Dorothy Jean (Dot) Lokey; 3 daughters, Dr. Karlan Downing and husband Ray Lemaster of Chilton, Kathleen Shepard of Hallettsville, Karol Carlson and huband Paul of Spring; 1 son, James T. Lokey, Jr. of Austin; 3 granddaughters, Jennifer Moffitt of Hallettsville, Jana Scoggins and husband Charles of Cedar Creek, and Kasi Carlson of Spring; great grandchildren, Lyndsey Schroeder, Chelsea Schulz, Logan Damron, Lauren Damron, Mason Scoggins, Bryan Scoggins, Brandon Scoggins, and Bailey Scoggins; and one great great granddaughter, Kynleigh Scallions.
Tom lived a life of service and was a wonderful man throughout his military, professional, and family life. In addition to his wife Dot, his greatest loves were flying and his family. He was a supportive, loving, caring, generous, selfless and humble gentleman who gave 100% in every endeavor. There is no replacement for a man like Tom. His memory, and his legacy, are to be respected and cherished. Services are pending for June.
Published in Austin American-Statesman from May 4 to May 5, 2014