Faye and Arlie Price, Sr. Nursing Scholarship

Arlie Price, Sr. grew up in Wayne County, West Virginia, living his first few years during the Great Depression in a log cabin with a dirt floor. After completing high school, he was drafted into the Army. Although he had not been to college, he was selected to attend Officer Candidate School (OCS).

Faye and Arlie Price, Sr. at their weddingAfter completing OCS, Arlie attended the Basic Officer Course at the  U.S. Army Medical Department   (AMEDD) at Fort Sam Houston. Subsequently, he attended flight school and trained helicopter pilots at what was then Camp Rucker in Alabama. This is where he met Faye Jeanette Andress, who was born and raised in Coffee County, Alabama. They married and moved frequently, living in Georgia, North Carolina, Texas, Germany and Nebraska— finally returning to Alabama.

After training helicopter pilots at Camp Rucker, Arlie was deployed to Korea where he served with a relatively small group of pioneers who became the original U.S. Army helicopter ambulance pilots first dedicated to providing battlefield medical services. The Solopilots, as they came to be known, were trained not only as pilots, but also as medics and mechanics since the limited power of the early helicopters necessitated a crew of one. A memorial to The Solopilots was dedicated in 2010 at the Army Medical Department Museum at Fort Sam Houston.

Later, Arlie completed two tours of duty in Vietnam, serving as commanding officer of the 45th Medical Company (AA) on his second deployment. By Vietnam, the far more technologically advanced  Bell UH-1 Iroquois (“Huey”) helicopters supported a crew of four with room for wounded inside instead of strapped to externally contrived litter racks. In 1962, MEDEVAC pilots operating in Vietnam became known as Dustoff pilots, from the radio call sign of the 57th Medical Detachment. In Vietnam, as well as Korea, the extraordinarily brave service provided by nurses serving in Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) units was an inspiration to Arlie and many other MEDEVAC pilots.

Completing both his bachelor’s degree and master’s degrees as a part-time student during his 20 years of active duty, Arlie retired as a lieutenant colonel and began a second career as a mental health counselor. In his fifties, Arlie started a third career after completing law school. During a brief but impactful legal career, Arlie sought out court-appointed cases representing indigent clients in a system without public defenders. After contracting idiopathic cardiomegaly, Arlie continued to practice law until he was no longer physically able. In the last years of Arlie’s life, he was hospitalized several times where he received care from excellent and compassionate nurses, as well as Faye, who was his primary caregiver.

Photo of the Price FamilyFaye was a full-time mother for several years, assisting with Cub Scouts, taking her two sons to little league practices, church and school functions and serving as an assistant in the school nurse’s office. When her children reached middle school, Faye become a local newspaper reporter. She was the first person in her family to attend high school but did not have the opportunity to attend college.

Although Faye’s formal education was limited, she had a clear, clean writing style and was assigned to cover the news of a nearby town with a particular focus on the municipal government. While gracious, she could surprise with her fierceness when necessary. She detested hypocrisy and had a passion for holding elected leaders accountable. Over the years, she would also have additional stints as a businesswoman and Realtor, which she continued to balance with being a dedicated mother and spouse. 

After Arlie’s passing in 1996, Faye spent as much time with family as possible, being a loving mother, grandmother, sister, cousin and aunt. She enjoyed traveling when she could, especially with her sisters and friends from church and her high school class. Faye also continued to attend Dustoff reunions to visit with old friends with whom Arlie served. She passed away in 2009.

The Faye and Arlie Price, Sr. Nursing Scholarship will be established in 2021 by their son, Kevin, along with family and friends. This endowment will support students enrolled in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program having transferred from the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) and demonstrate financial need. Preference will be given to students participating in a joint degree program between the School of Nursing and UTSA designed to culminate in degrees from both institutions.

To make a gift to the Faye and Arlie Price, Sr. Nursing Scholarship, complete and submit the form below. If you have any questions, please contact Melissa Mireles, School of Nursing Director of Development, at 210-567-5534 or mirelesm4@uthscsa.edu.

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