Carl Ray Vertrees

May 19, 1932October 11, 2020

CW-4 (Retired) Carl Ray Vertrees, age 88, of Copperas Cove, Texas passed away on Sunday, October 11, 2020. Carl was born May 19, 1932 to parents Mary Atcher and Joseph Vertrees.

Carl served his country honorably with the U.S. Army as a pilot for 27 years before retiring in 1973. In 1952, Carl was assigned to the 10th Special Forces group. He obtained the rank of CW-4 and received many awards including Master Army Aviator Badge, Distinguished Flying Cross with an Oak Leaf Cluster, Air Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with 4 Bronze Stars, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, National Defense Medal with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Army Commendation Medal. In his retirement, Carl was a life-time member of the VFW, DAV, Viet Nam Helicopter Pilots Association, the American Legion, and the Special Forces Association.

Carl married the love of his life, Lois, on August 19, 1949 in North Carolina while he was stationed at Fort Bragg. They shared 71 years together. Carl and Lois enjoyed traveling cross-country to visit friends and family and to see new sites.

Carl is preceded in death by his loving wife, Lois Dean; his parents; two brothers and a sister; as well as two grandchildren and one great grandchild.

He is survived by his children; son Brian Vertrees and wife Edna, son Gary Vertrees, and daughter Donna Coryell and husband Mark; eight grandchildren, nineteen great grandchildren, and seven great-great grandchildren.

A visitation for Carl Vertrees will begin at 9:30 am on Thursday October 22, 2020. Funeral Services for Mr. Vertrees will begin at 11:30 am also on Thursday the 22nd of October and will be followed by the Interment with Military Honors at 2:00 pm at Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery, 11463 State Hwy 195, Killeen, Texas.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Carl's memory may be made to a charity of your choice.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Vertrees family.


  • Visitation

    Thursday, October 22, 2020

  • Funeral Service

    Thursday, October 22, 2020

  • Graveside Service with Military Honors

    Thursday, October 22, 2020


Carl Ray Vertrees

have a memory or condolence to add?

Ronald Martin

October 25, 2020

I am one of the lucky ones that had the honor of being Carl's co-pilot on may occasions in Viet Nam in 1968. I was a new WO-1, right out of Flight School and Chinook (CH-47) transition. Carl realized that it wasn't just knowing the technical aspects flying the Chinook, especially in combat, that was important but also important was your ability to remain calm in any given situation. Car's ability to communicate by example, was very effective, Carl never got rattled, was fearless and was the consummate optimist, always placing humor in any situation. This was often a welcome welcoming influence.

Carl will forever be etched in my mind for these and many other fin traits, after all, when we flew it was as though,

"WE WERE OUT FOR A SUNDAY DRIVE" See ya next Sunday Carl,

Ron Martin

Karl Stanglin

October 23, 2020

Was sad on my way to Lois's funeral Just a short time back. Was happy when I returned home after seeing all the comfort that Carl's family brought to him. We will all miss them both very much. Their travels seemed like they included our family. I had told him he would have his own RV hookups in the orchard next visit. He told me how it was to be done. Hope to get it right for the next Vertrees that travels this way. Peace and comfort I pray for all in this time of Carl's passing. My father Maxville Weldon Stanglin and Carl are best friends, my name is Karl, the same only with a K. Love ya'll

Bert Hernandez

October 22, 2020

Janice and I are very sorry we couldn't attend the service today because of my chemo treatment. Lois and Carl were great people and fun to be around. Janice and I were always entertained by their stories after they got back from making their travels. Carl was a fine guy and I'm sorry that I was unable to get back to see Carl after everything he went through, For the family, Carl was one of the best men I ever met. I'm truly sorry for your loss. If there is a consolation, it is he and Lois are together again. I feel God will see to that.
--Bert Hernandez, SFAC93, in Waco


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