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Billy K. Gaedke Jr
Class of 1949
Instructor Emeritus of Education Studies, Eastern New Mexico University and Chief Master Sergeant (USAF, Retired), Bill Gaedke graduated from Shorewood High School in 1949. Notable achievements were the seven letters he earned in track and cross country, narration of the dance club assembly, a role in his senior class play, and member of the Civil Air Patrol. He attended Denver University for two years and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1951 at the height of the Korean War. He served on active duty for 28 years, retiring in 1979 as chief master sergeant, the highest enlisted rank. He served in Korea in 1953-54, and in Japan from 1966 to 1970. His last duty assignment was as senior enlisted advisor to the Commander, 27th Tactical Fighter Wing, Cannon Air Force Base, responsible for the welfare of 3700 enlisted men and women. Among his awards and decorations are two meritorious service medals and four Air Force Commendation medals Gaedke continued his Air Force service as assistant aerospace science instructor in the AFJROTC unit at Clovis High School from 1979 to 1986. He attended Eastern New Mexico University from 1986 to 1989, earning a bachelor of science degree, summa cum laude, in December 1988, and a master of education degree in December, 1989. He coached volleyball and the middle distances in boys and girls track and field and taught social studies at Clovis High. He was an instructor of reading at Covis Community College and ultimately became a full time instructor in the teacher education program at Eastern New Mexico University. Upon his retirement from ENMU in 2006 the University regents conferred upon him Instructor Emeritus of Education Studies. Since his retirement he has continued at ENMU as chair, education scholarship committee. He was selected as an Air Force JROTC outstanding instructor in 1981, 83, and 85, received the Air Force Association's award of merit for outstanding contributions to education, Clovis secondary schools volunteer of the year in 1999, the 2000 New Mexico Activities Association sportsman of the year, recipient of the 2002 Chester Haughawaut Exemplary Human Relations award (ENMU), and students of the ENMU Collegiate FFA selected him as their 2006 teacher of the year. He has been a Weblos Den Leader, Cub Scout Packmaster, Coordinator for Chaplain Services at the Topeka (KS) VA Hospital, and Lector at chaplains services. As a pitcher-outfielder. Gaedke played fast pitch softball for 26 years, starting with John's Barber Shop in Shorewood, and he competed in 12 major air command and two Air Force world-wide softball championships. As a masters track competitor he was a world class runner winning numerous AAU, TAC, and USTFF regional and national championships, and he held the Pan American Masters Games record in the 800 meter run from 1978 to 1981. He was masters all-American in the 200, 400, 800, and 1500 meter events. He is currently (Sep 2012) in his 34th year as volunteer sports public address announcer for the Clovis Wildcats and Lady Wildcats and for the Curry County Cats semi-pro football team. He married Phyllis Jean Holscher in 1955; their children are Teresa and Jeffrey.