Col. Joe A. Caple (USAF Retired), 84, died on April 22, 2014 at his home at Foxridge Estates in Bryant. He was preceded in death by his parents, Fred and Marie Caple and grandson, Keith Caple. Joe was a member of the Lakewood United Methodist Church in North Little Rock for 51 years.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Teresa, son Guy Caple and wife Jan, daughters Jet Cuffman and husband Stephen, Paula Gay Jaicks and husband, Fred. Grandchildren Christina Bradke and husband Matt, Jennifer Murphree and husband Chris, Lauren Walker and husband Jeff, Rachel Jaicks, Hayden Cuffman, Dylan Jaicks, Taylor Jaicks, Creighton Cuffman, Cate Jaicks and great-grandchildren Avery Cozens, Erin Murphree, Alex Bradke, Britni Murphree, Caleb Walker and Isaac Walker. Also survived by his brothers Pat Caple, Don Caple and wife Janiece, sister Sue Alfred and husband Dick as well as numerous special cousins, nieces and nephews.
Joe graduated from Little Rock Senior High in 1947 and Little Rock Junior College in 1949. In 1956 he received a B. S. with honors in Mechanical Engineering. He later graduated from the Air War College in 1974.
He graduated from the USAF Aviation Cadet Program in 1951 and was commissioned as a 2nd Lt. He served in the Korean War where he flew 100 combat missions in P51 and P86 fighters. He then served as an instructor pilot for 3 years and then joined the Arkansas Air National Guard in 1956. In 1968 Joe was called back to active duty during the Pueblo Crisis as Squadron Commander. He retired as a Colonel and Group Commander of the 189th TRS. After military retirement, he worked for Boeing International in Athens, Greece.
During his military service, Joe received the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Korean Service Medal with Bronze Service Star, United Nations Service Medal and the Adjutant General’s Outstanding Commander Award.
Memorial service will be held 11 a.m. on Saturday,April 26 at Griffin Leggett Rest Hills Funeral Home, 7724 Landers Rd., North Little Rock . Please share your memories of Joe with the family at www.griffinleggettresthills.com.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests that donations be made to the Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Lakewood United Methodist Church or the charity of your choice.