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Info Sheet/Obituary - John Judson Spencer Jr
Died 23 March 2024 - age 85 - Obit - Comments

John: I commanded from February 1972 until I DEROSed in September 1972. Prior to that I had been Adjutant of the 12th Combat Aviation Group. The F Trp Command was given to me for having suggested six of my OCS and/or Flight School Classmates for command within aviation units within 12th Group. All did outstanding jobs. COL John Richardson, Group c=Commander would call men in an tell me where there was a need for a new CO. I would ask for the job and he would turn me down. Then one day he called me in and asked if I wanted F Troop. Of course I accepted and the rest is history. 


John Judson Spencer, Jr, 85, of Columbus, GA died Saturday, March 23, 2024 at Columbus Hospice House. Funeral services were held Wednesday, March 27 at 11 AM, in the Chapel of McMullen Funeral Home and Crematory, with Pastor Paul Thomas and Pastor Bud Rupel officiating. Interment was held at Parkhill Cemetery with full Military Honors following the service.

John was born October 29, 1938 in Magee, MS son of the late John Judson Spencer, Sr. and Idera Gordon Spencer. The son of a career army officer, John grew up in places such as Okinawa. Japan, Ft. Gordon, GA, Ft Leavenworth, KS and other points in between. A prolific athlete, he played both football and baseball at Hines Jr. College in Mississippi and also at the University of Mississippi, and even played some semi pro baseball in the Washington DC area.

At the age of 22, he followed in his father’s footsteps and joined the US Army. Commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant out of OCS at Ft. Benning, he chose to become an Army Aviator. John flew fixed wing and rotor wing aircraft for the Army and was able to fly the majority of the Army’s aircraft inventory over the course of his career. He served three tours of duty in Vietnam. Over his Army career he was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, Five Distinguished Flying Crosses, Two Bronze stars, the Legion of Merit, 58 Air Medals and more.

After his wartime experience, he worked in the Training and Doctrine command at Ft. Monroe Virginia and then the Infantry Board at Ft Benning, as a test officer where he soon became expert in night vision technology. After retirement he opened his own business, Technology Associates, and consulted with defense industry and the Army to help ensure our soldiers had the very best in night vision equipment. “We Own the Night” was more than a motto to him and he worked into his 70’s making and keeping that a reality.

Coming to faith in Jesus in his mid-thirties, he became a living embodiment of "If any man be in Christ Jesus he is a new creation”. He became a student of God’s Word and was active in every church in which he was a member. His health slowed that down in recent years, but he loved Evangel Church and her pastors deeply.

Of all John accomplished, he was most proud of his family. He was a beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He was very proud of his children and grandchildren and felt blessed to have two Godly sons-in-law and daughter-in-law. He felt the same way about the spouses of his Grandchildren, and nothing was more special to him than his great grandchildren.

Other than his parents, John is preceded in death by his wife, Virginia Woodham Spencer.

Survivors include his children, Shannon Bice (Marcus) of Fortson, GA, John Judson Spencer III (Heather) of Albany, GA, Jennifer Green (Bubba) of Columbus, GA; grandchildren, Ben Bice (Hunter) of Columbus, GA, Will Bice (Alex) of Fayetteville, GA, Kaitlyn Martinez (Luis) of Carey, NC, Kelsy Franklin (Dan) of Clarksville, TN, Jud Spencer of Wauwatosa, WI, Juliana Spencer of Chiang Rai, Thailand, Melodie Spencer of Albany, GA, Hunter Green (Taylor) of Columbus, GA, Hailey Green of Birmingham, AL; great grandchildren, Elaina Bice, Parker Bice, Izzy Bice, Remington Martinez, Bison Martinez, Elliott Franklin; siblings, Thomas Spencer (Jenny), Patricia Spencer, Nancy Ware (David); special friend Betty Allen, numerous other family and friends.



Pete Holmberg, COL (ret.), USA  March 30, 2024 2:07 PM
John Spencer was my Cavalry Troop Commander in Vietnam. He has been a life- and career-long role model and inspiration. I credit his high level of competence and dedication with my own survival and a role model for a long and rewarding military career.

Hunter Green: My grandfather was Major John Judson Spencer JR (I am one of his grandsons) who commanded F troop 4th US Cavalry during the Vietnam War in 1972. He was one of the greatest men I have ever known and was a hero to me. I loved listening to him tell me stories about the Vietnam War and everything you guys did over there. I have been going back through the website trying to find pictures of him or any stories that can be found. If you know of any or have any pictures of him, I would love to get them if possible.