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Ross Truesdale Jr. '59 August 28, 2023 11:57 AM updated: September 26, 2023 10:33 AM

Ross Ellis Truesdale, Jr. 

December 1, 1937 - August 3, 2023 

Ross Ellis Truesdale Jr., 85, passed away, August 3, 2023 in Hidden Springs, ID

Ross was born December 1, 1937 in San Antonio, TX to parents Thelma Agnes Haye Truesdale and Ross Ellis Truesdale, Sr. Ross attended primary, middle, and high school in Aransas Pass, TX. After graduating high school, he went to Texas A&M University, where he participated in ROTC. He graduated from Texas A&M with a B.S. in Education and was at the same time commissioned into the United States Air Force on May 27, 1960. While in the Air Force, he completed an M.S. in management from USC.

Ross was born in San Antonio and raised in Aransas Pass, TX. While in the military, he was stationed at various military bases, including Bartow AB (FL)–where he met and married his first wife Jeanne–Craig AFB (AL), Paine Field (WA), McDill AFB (FL), Hahn AB (Germany), and Nellis AFB (NV). After serving a year TDY in Udorn Thailand, he was stationed at the Pentagon (reluctantly); then he was posted to WI to serve as ROTC director at the University of Wisconsin, Superior. His final post took him back to Nellis AFB. Following retirement, he lived in Las Vegas for another 17 years, where on May 31, 2000 at Mountain View Assembly of God in Las Vegas, NV he married Carla Truesdale. Eventually his charter work took him and his second wife Carla to Southern California–a location they could not escape soon enough. They eventually managed to leave CA and move to Idaho to be near his daughter, son-in-law, and his (eventual) long-awaited grandchildren. He spent 19 years with his wife in his beloved home in Hidden Springs, ID.

Being the industrious young man that he was, Ross funded his activities and “must haves” throughout his high school years with a paper route. In college, he waited tables in the dining hall. Then he got his big boy job when he joined the military in 1960 and became a USAF fighter pilot. He retired from the Air Force in Oct of 1984 after serving his country for 24 years, but he was not finished working yet. Shortly after retirement, he joined his first wife Jeanne as a teacher at Calvary Chapel Christian School, where he effectively wielded the “board” of education. When the school closed four years later, he went back to flying, this time flying charter aviation for various companies. During these years, he became chief pilot and director of operations for several companies and gained various additional aircraft type ratings, allowing him to fly all over the world.

As a former USAF fighter pilot, Ross never lost his love for flying, and for many years enjoyed buzzing around the country with his family in his own single engine Cessna, often dropping in for a visit with extended family and friends, sometimes even taking them for a spin as well. His love for flying was matched by his love for traveling. Topping his bucket list in recent years were Greece and Israel, both places he had been before but wanted to revisit with his wife Carla. In his 85 years of life he was blessed to be able to travel all over the world, both for work and for pleasure, his favorite destination of late being Maui, HI, where he and Carla made their yearly pilgrimage.

For most of his life, Ross enjoyed all manner of outdoor activities, including (though not limited to) camping, fishing, snow skiing–both alpine and cross country, water skiing, tennis, swimming, sailing, scuba-diving, biking, going on leisurely–or vigorous–walks, and long distance running. In fact, while stationed at the Pentagon in Washington DC from 1975-1979, he had the opportunity to run in multiple marathons–including the Boston Marathon–though, arguably, some of his favorite experiences running during those years were when he rounded up his family (and any add on friends) for a fun run around the neighborhood.

Though raised in the Methodist church, it wasn’t until February 1975–when Ross was on temporary duty in Udorn Thailand–that he committed his life fully to Jesus. As he related it, God had been trying to get his attention for years through a number of experiences that could only be described as miraculous or supernatural. On this particular day in 1975, he was jogging along the perimeter road at Udorn air base, as he frequently did; but this time, halfway through his run, he found himself suddenly overcome with a sense of his need for the Lord and he fell to his knees in surrender, asking Jesus to forgive him, come into his heart, and be Lord of his life. Thus began a transformation that would reshape the rest of his life and legacy. He would always say that when he finally got back up to finish his run that day, he felt like he could fly. It is not surprising then that one of his favorite Bible verses would become Isaiah 40:31: “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint.”

Ross is preceded in death by his first wife of 34 years, Jeanne Truesdale.

Ross is survived by his wife Carla, who resides in Boise, ID; his son and daughter-in-law, Terry and Cheryl Truesdale, from Henderson, NV; his daughter and son-in-law, Tammy and Mark Gismondi and grandchildren Asher, Pierce, and Anastasia Gismondi, from Nampa, ID; and his brother and sister-in-law, Jimmy and Beth Truesdale, from Aransas Pass, TX

The memorial service will be held in Spring 2024.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Wounded Warrior Project 


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