Eustice Parnelle, Jr.July 30, 1924 ~ December 5, 2017 (age 93)
Mr. Eustice Parnelle, 93, of Ocala, passed away Tuesday, December 5, 2017, at his home in Ocala. Eustice is a native South Carolinian, but moved to Ocala when his father got a job with the State Forestry Service. In 1942, after one semester at the University of Florida where he sought a degree in forestry, Eustice was drafted, opted for the Army and volunteered for the Aviation Cadet Program. He graduated as a navigator with the rank of second lieutenant in the old Army Air Corps and trained on B-17s at Avon Park Air Base, Florida. The war ended as he was about to go to Europe. Eustice earned a degree in forestry on the G.I. Bill, worked briefly for the forestry service in Ocala, then rejoined the newly named US Air Force. He flew on B-29 Superfortresses, and the B-47, the first jet bomber, and trained as navigator, radar operator, and bombardier before becoming a crew member on the huge B-52 bombers. After earning a degree in mechanical engineering, Eustice worked on ICBM liquid fuel problems, and when the missiles were deactivated, headed the engineering department of the site deactivation task force. Retiring as Lieutenant Colonel, Eustice worked for Florida Power, and he moved with his wife Lois and four children to St. Petersburg. After retirement, Eustice and Lois returned to Ocala to live nearby to family and high school friends. Since moving back to Ocala they have been active members of First Baptist Church of Ocala.
Eustice is survived by Lois, his wife of 70 years, their daughters Peggy Parnelle and Janice Dobbs (Chris), their sons Ricky Parnelle (Elena) and Randy Parnelle (Dorothy), 5 grandchildren, and two great grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held at 11 AM Monday, December 11, 2017, in the Fellowship Hall of First Baptist Church, 2801 SE Maricamp Road, Ocala, with Dr. Edward D. Johnson officiating. Interment will follow in Greenwood Cemetery with full military honors. The family will receive friends from 10 AM until service time.