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Andrew Caudle served on U.S.S. Ogden

MADISON – Andrew Caudle extended his family legacy of military service, as his father and two of his uncles had done.

Born in Anniston, Andrew Caudle has lived in Alabama his entire life.

His father was transferred from Anniston Depot to Redstone Arsenal in 1961. “My father worked for U.S. Army Missile Command. My father served in World War II, as did two of my uncles,” Caudle said.

Andrew Caudle graduated from Butler High School in 1966 and then attended the University of Alabama in Huntsville. “I enlisted in the U.S. Navy in April 1968 on the delayed program,” Caudle said. “I became active in September.”

Caudle completed Boot Camp in San Diego, Calif. He was assigned to the U.S.S. Ogden (LPD-5) out of San Diego. “I met the ship in Vietnam at the end of their deployment,” he said.

“The ship was going to Yokosaku for their liberty port. I have also had liberty in Hong Kong,” Caudle said.

The Ogden was one of three ships that carried a Marine Float Battalion out of Okinawa. “During these deployments, the group carried out Amphibious Exercises with South Korea forces. We also brought back vehicles from Vietnam to the states,” Caudle said.

Reporting to the ship, Caudle was assigned to Deck Force. “After two years, I transferred to Ship Services Division and ran two of the ship stories,” he said. “I also helped in the ship’s laundry.”

When Caudle left the U.S.S. Ogden, he had reached the rank of Ship Serviceman, 3rd Class. Returning to the United States, he started to work at Dunlop Tire in Huntsville. Caudle retired after 28 years.

“I met my wife Jane, who worked as a teacher, and married her in 1974,” Caudle said. “We had two daughters, Celeste and Racheal.”

“Celeste is married and lives in Madison. She works for SICS and has three children — Tyler, Drew and Charlotte,” he said. “Racheal is married and lives in Huntersville, N.C. She has one child, Bridget.”

Both Andrew and Jane Caudle are retired but stay busy with their grandchildren. “Tyler and Drew play three sports,” he said. The Caudles are members of First Baptist Church of Madison.

Andrew is a member of American Legion, Post 229 in Madison and SOAR retired steelworkers. He enjoys studying and reading about history.

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