Captain Woodrow W. Waldrop (Ground Hog) A Troop 1970-71 passed away this morning at 4AM from complications from pneumonia. He had been struggling with illness over the past 1.5 years. The family thought he was pulling through just fine. He went to the hospital for breathing problems, he stayed a few days and the hospital sent him home. He got worse, they took him to different hospital and was told he had hospital induced pneumonia. He passed within 36 hours.
I got the news today from LT Paul Shannon, 1 st Platoon 1970-71. I called Georgie, Woody’s wife, and gave her condolences on behalf of A Troop.
The funeral is this Friday, April 1st: Rocko Funeral Homes, 3715 Hwy. 25 South, Montevallo, AL 35115 (205) 665-2135 and will be buried at the National Cemetery in Alabama.
For anyone wanting to contact his wife, Georgie Waldrop, (205) 663-1742 or 1326 Whirlaway Circle, Helena, AL 35080
Cpt. Waldrop was a rough and tumble Trooper. He sported a handle bar mustache and loud voice. Always on the move, taking the fight to the enemy. Once when we were at Alpha 4 he decided to take us 3 miles into the DMZ on a “recon mission”. I think he even yelled CHARGE! as we crossed over into no man’s land. Another day I’ll never forget, one Enemy KIA and everyone made it back to talk about it.
I’m truly sorry that he didn’t make it to any of the reunions. At the 2010 reunion several of us called him by phone. I know he was happy to make the connection. He told us about his struggles with his illness and hoped to make the next Cav reunion. I’m glad we made that call.
Long Live the Cav
1st Platoon, 70.71
Sorry to hear of Captain Waldrop's passing. I have vivid memories of
him when we road marched to Khe Sahn down QL9 in the dark! He was a
"take two salt tablets and drive the fuck on!" kind of leader. He will
The good Captain certainly filled the day. If night we rolled into Khe Sahn
there'd been a game warden on the job we would've been thrown in jail for
hunting past dark. It was one "creepy" stretch of road. The last few klicks
of the roadside was heavy with ARVN returning from getting their ass kicked
in Laos. With all the small camp fires, the smoky haze, the smells and
shadows of people moving around. It was one of the strangest experiences I
had in Nam.
The funeral is at Rockco Funeral Home in Montevallo April 1st and to be
buried at the National Cemetery. I know the family would be grateful, me too
if you can make it. I certainly would understand if you can't.
All the best,
Even though Woody succeeded me in command of the Troop, I did not get much time to know him then. Before the change-of command he had a staff job, I think, and the Troop was out in the field. Similarly, after the command turn-over I was in a staff job in QTCB for the few days before I left country, and he was leading the Troop in the field. So we only had a brief period to get acquainted. Nevertheless, Woody is one of the main "characters" that stuck in my memory from my time with the Troop.
Consistent with his notable personal appearance (sort of a cross between Teddy Roosevelt and Wilford Brimley), Woody was (like a lot of Cavalrymen hope to be thought of) a little larger than life. He was very self-confident, but his confidence was grounded in very good tactical and technical skills, so was justified. (I got to know Woody better a couple of years after leaving the Troop, while we were both at Ft. Knox.) Upon our change-of-command, I felt that I was leaving the Troop in good hands. I had not heard of the DMZ incursion that Fergie describes, but I can certainly picture it!
I, too, am very sorry to hear of Woody's passing, and it is unfortunate that he wasn't able to participate more with the Troop in the past decade. I'm sure he would have added a lot of spirit to our gatherings!
Link to his tribute video
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