Air Marshal KC Cariappa (retd) was commissioned into the Indian Air Force in 1957. On 22 September 1965, during the war against Pakistan, he was shot down while carrying out attacks on enemy positions and taken Prisoner of War. He remained in captivity till 22 January 1966. He participated in the Bangladesh War of Independence and awarded the Vayu Sena Medal for gallantry. In January 1995 he was awarded the Param Vishisht Seva Medal by the President of India for his distinguished services to the Indian Air Force. He retired in January 1996. He was also President of the Coorg Wildlife Society.