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Alamogordo, NM 88310
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Charles N. "Chuck" Diehl

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Retired civil service engineer
Charles N. "Chuck" Diehl, of Alamogordo, died Sunday, Nov. 23, 2008, following months of extended illness.
Chuck was born July 2, 1933, in Parkerton, Wyo., to Charles T. and Mary E. (Ostrander) Diehl on the family farm located east of Casper, Wyo. His mother and father's families were among the first few frontier pioneers who homesteaded in Wyoming in the early 1880s.
Chuck graduated from Natrona County High School in 1951. Following high school, he received an appointment to attend the United States Military Academy at West Point and was a member of the Class of '57 Black Knights (Company K-1). During his junior or "cow" year at the academy, he became ill and spent nearly a year at Walter Reed Army Medical Hospital before the Army medically discharged him from the service as a 100 percent disabled American veteran.
Chuck continued his education later at the University of Wyoming, where he completed his Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering and math in 1969. It was while he was working on his degree that he earned his private pilot's license. After graduating, he moved the family to Alamogordo and went to work in radar at White Sands Missile Range. He spent more than 30 years in radar and instrumentation at White Sands before his retirement.
An avid private pilot, Chuck was a nearly 30-year member of the Commemorative Air Force, aka Confederate Air Force. Through the CAF, he and his wife restored several "war birds," including a Japanese Val Dive Bomber replica utilized in the movies "Tora, Tora, Tora" and "Pearl Harbor," and performed a total restoration of a German ME-108 Messerschmitt "Taifun" (N2231) into flying condition. This airplane and his beloved Piper Cherokee Six airplane he flew and operated out of the Alamogordo-White Sands Regional Airport. His aviation interests also included membership with the Experimental Aircraft Association and service on the Alamogordo Airport Advisory Board for the city of Alamogordo. He was a longtime member of the Disabled American Veterans, the American Legion and the BPO Elks Club in Alamogordo.
He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Frances (Montaño) Diehl, of Alamogordo; a son, Charles M. "Chuck" Diehl, of Dallas; two daughters, Jacqueline "Jackie" Diehl, of Sunspot, and Lorena "Lori" Diehl, of Albuquerque; two stepsons, Alfred Cordova, of Tularosa, and Jesse "Philip" Cordova and his wife, Veronica, of Tesuque; five grandchildren, Annette, Michelle and Verlinda Mae Cordova, of Tularosa, and Dara Montoya and Jared Cordova, of Santa Fe; four great-grandchildren, Gabriel Briggs and Stephanie Cordova, of Tularosa, and Chae and Jett Montoya, of Santa Fe; a brother, Lawrence Diehl, and his wife, Beverly, of Casper, Wyo.; his wife's sisters and their families in Santa Fe; and numerous nephews and nieces in Casper and Jackson Hole, Wyo., Santa Fe, Española, and Waukesha, Wis.
He was preceded in death by parents.
Chuck will be remembered not only for his dedication to military service both past and present, but also for being a loving dad, "Grandpo" and "Great-Grandpo." He spent his life setting an example for how to live life for his children and subsequent grandchildren. He will also be remembered for building the family's cabin in Wyoming, where the extended family spent many summers together boating and fishing on the lake.
Services are not scheduled. At his request, his ashes will be scattered in Wyoming at a later date.
A gathering of friends and family will occur at a later date the family hangar at Alamogordo-White Sands Regional Airport. He will be remembered near the airplanes and his flying friends that he so loved.
Should friends desire, donations may be made to the ME-108 Restoration Fund (N2231) of the Commemorative Air Force, and mailed to his wife, Frances, at P.O. Box 1363, Alamogordo, NM 88311.
Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Hamilton-O'Dell Funeral Home.

To sign the online guestbook, please visit

www.hamiltonodell.com

Published in Alamogordo Daily News from Nov. 25 to Dec. 9, 2008
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