Thursday, November 19, 2009

Captain Millet’s Wolfhounds, Hill 180

President Obama visited Osan Air Base Korea today. I wonder if the President took some time to visit Hill 180? It was there that Captain Lewis Millet, commander of E Company, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry led the last major bayonet charge in American military history on February 7, 1951.

President Truman awarded him the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Lewis Millet died this past Saturday, November 14. He was 88. You can read more about the Colonel’s life here and his obituary in the NY Times is here, published today.

Millet trained a lot of soldiers. While many will write of his heroism, this soldier’s spirit lives in a very real way at Fort Benning’s Ranger School, and at Fort Campbell where he founded the famous Recondo School. He was a Ranger’s Ranger, someone who championed non-commissioned officers. He encouraged infantry soldiers to practice their “fieldcraft”, those skills to thrive in the wild, not just survive. He believed in conducting operations at night and he didn’t take a liking to the firebase mentality.

Lewis Millet loved his Regiment, the 27th Infantry, Wolfhounds. He loved to talk about training. Soldiers would want to hear his war stories, but the discussion always transitioned to training. There will never be another Lewis Millet, no one like him, and yet there’s a collegial continuum of soldiers departed to serving who share the Colonel’s spirit of the bayonet, his belief in tough realistic training, and his love for soldiers.

Rangers Lead The Way

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