On 10 December 1976, 2Lt. Lawrence K. Ridge, Class of 1975, died as a result of injuries received in an automobile accident near Mesa, AZ. He is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred J. Ridge, 18 Hamilton Street, Hyde Park, MA 12136.
Lt. Ridge attended the USAFA Prep school prior to being admitted to the Academy. As a cadet, he was a member of the 20th Cadet Squadron and participated in the scuba and History clubs.
Following graduation, Lt. Ridge was assigned to the 78th Student Squadron at Webb AFB. He was assigned to the 311th Tactical Fighter Training Squadron at Luke AFB at the time of his death.
I think Larry must have been the first of our class to lose his life after graduation.
Larry had been in my UPT class at Webb. Rick McGraw, myself, and Larry were renting a house in Phoenix and had just started F4 RTU when Larry tragically died in a car wreck in his Fiat over near Williams AFB.
Larry wanted to do nothing more than fly the F4. Larry had gone over to Willie to check out the first female pilots on a Friday night at the O Club. Unfortunately he never made it back to the house.
I escorted Larry’s body back to Boston for burial. His dad felt compelled to show me the sites around Boston on the morning of Larry’s funeral. His dad was so proud of Larry having graduated from the Academy and Pilot Training.
I just wanted to post a story about Larry. I still miss Larry to this day. He was a friend from my first day at the Prep School until a very tragic day in December 1976 that cut his life so short. Larry we miss you.
– Rich F.
Larry and I roomed together during the final segment of our First Class year. I rarely think in terms of untapped potential, regret over waste, or opportunities missed. But his untimely death stamped such notions onto my memory indelibly.
"Comrade in arms" and vitality in leadership also come to mind. He used to poke fun at his academic standing (more precisely, lack thereof) ... strange, that he now stands at the top of an ever-lengthening list.
– Dean S.