Thomas A. McMillen of Morris, proudly served our nation in the United States Army on active duty from 1967 to 1973, completing two tours in Vietnam. During his wartime service, he ascended to the rank of Captain and demonstrated his versatility and expertise first as an infantry platoon commander and later as a Chinook helicopter pilot.
During his first tour in Vietnam, CPT. McMillen commanded the 1st Platoon, Charlie Company, 1st Infantry Division, also known as “Big Red One.” He and his platoon fully engaged with the enemy on three occasions during search and destroy operations. Despite the hardships, all 25 men under his command survived their six months in the bush.
After rotating back to the U.S., CPT. McMillen returned to Vietnam in August 1970 as a Chinook pilot in the 242 Assault Support Helicopter Company. Over the next year, he logged 973 combat flying hours, taking on small arms fire on numerous occasions, but always returning safely.
Following his active duty service, CPT. McMillen served in the Army National Guard, retiring in 2001 as a Chief Warrant Officer 4. In retirement, he continues to demonstrate his devotion to his country and his fellow soldiers. CPT. McMillen belongs to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, is a member of the Vietnam Veterans Helicopter Association and gives group presentations about his experiences.
CPT. McMillen is proud to have received the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with 6 Campaign Stars, Vietnam Campaign Medal with ‘60 Device, Bronze Star Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Aviator Badge, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal, four Overseas Service Bars, and Combat Infantryman’s Badge.
CPT. Thomas A. McMillen is a strong, compassionate leader who could adapt to any situation and utilize his God-given abilities to the fullest extent to defend our rights, protect his fellow soldiers, and proudly represent the United States of America.