Military Order of the Purple Heart

Texas Capital Chapter 1919 Austin, Texas

 

HOWARD MCKINNEY

25th Infantry Division patch

12th Infantry

27th Infantry Regiment Wolfhounds


 

HOWARD MCKINNEY

Patriot, Chapter 1919

 (ARMY, Vietnam) Article January 2004

Howard McKinney was born in Fort Worth in 1945. He spent his early childhood in Granbury, Texas and then the family moved to Stephenville when he was in elementary school.  Howard graduated from Tarleton State University in Stephenville in May 1967 with a B.S. degree in Mathematics and Physics. 

 

As an ROTC graduate, Howard was commissioned Second Lieutenant, Infantry, and entered active duty in October 1967.  After training in Fort Benning, GA and Fort Polk, LA, Howard was ordered to Vietnam, arriving in country   September 1968.  He was initially assigned to Company A, 1st Battalion, 27th Infantry (Wolfhounds), 25th Infantry Division, in DAU TIENG.  Following an emergency leave in December, upon his return to the 25th  Division, he was assigned as a rifle platoon leader in Company B, 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry.  The  company operated from Fire Support Base “Pershing” and on Feb 9, 1969  during a road clearing operation from Pershing to TRANG BANG, his unit was engaged by the enemy in an action following which, Howard received the Silver Star for gallantry (see citation) and the  Purple Heart for an AK-47 wound to his left leg.

 

After two weeks hospitalization in CU CHI and another month convalescence, he returned to his company, this time as Weapons Platoon Leader.  He later served as Company Executive Officer before completing his tour of duty.  He was also awarded the Bronze Star and Army Commendation Medals.  After returning to the United States, he was discharged as a Captain in late 1969. 

Immediately upon reentry into civilian life,  Howard McKinney was employed by the University of Texas data processing unit.  After nearly three years at UT he joined the management consulting firm of Booz, Allen & Hamilton where he worked for another two years on an Automated Tax Appraisal System for the city of Wichita Falls and the city of Austin as team leader of the Tax Application Team.  He then returned to Austin with the   Information Systems Division for the State Comptroller, (then) Bob Bullock. Having gained experience in automation of tax, municipal, county, and state levels he began a private consultation  business.  Since 1981 he has directed McKinney E-Systems & Associates, Inc. of Austin, Texas. Howard and his wife, Judy, have two married children and they currently enjoy trips to remote nature areas. Howard is an avid fisherman whenever he can take time off from his work and volunteer duties with Chapter 1919.

CITATION  

The Silver Star

Date of action: 9 FEBRUARY 1969

FOR GALLANTRY IN ACTION:  FIRST LIEUTENANT McKINNEY DISTINGUISHED HIMSELF BY HEROIC ACTIONS ON 9 FEBRUARY 1969, WHILE SERVING AS A PLATOON LEADER WITH COMPANY B, 2D BATTALION, 12TH INFANTRY, 25TH INFANTRY DIVISION IN THE REPUBLIC OF VIETNAM.  WHILE ON A ROAD CLEARING MISSION, LIEUTENANT McKINNEY’S PLATOON WAS AMBUSHED BY AN UNKNOWN SIZE ENEMY FORCE.  LIEUTENANT McKINNEY RECEIVED A PAINFUL LEG WOUND IN THE INITIAL ENEMY BARRAGE.  DESPITE HIS WOUND HE DIRECTED HIS PLATOON’S FIRE AGAINST THE ENEMY.  WHEN ONE FLANK WAS THREATENED LIEUTENANT McKINNEY CRAWLED ACROSS THE OPEN ROAD, EXPOSING HIMSELF TO THE ENEMY’S DEADLY FIRE, IN ORDER TO DIRECT THE THREATENED ELEMENT.  LIEUTENANT McKINNEY, ONCE AGAIN DISREGARDING HIS OWN PERSONAL SAFETY AND HIS WOUND, CRAWLED TO THE FORWARD MOST POSITION OF THE PLATOON WHERE HIS WOUNDED MEN WERE LYING.  IN THIS FORWARD POSITION HE ADMINISTERED LIFE SAVING FIRST AID AND PERSONALLY ASSISTED THEM TO COVERED POSITIONS.  LIEUTENANT McKINNEY’S ACTIONS WERE RESPONSIBLE FOR SAVING SEVERAL LIVES AND FOR THE DEFEAT OF THE INSURGENT FORCE.  LIEUTENANT McKINNEY’S PERSONAL BRAVERY AGGRESSIVENESS AND DEVOTION TO DUTY ARE IN KEEPING WITH THE HIGHEST TRADITIONS OF THE MILITARY  SERVICE AND REFLECT GREAT CREDIT UPON HIMSELF, HIS UNIT, THE 25TH INFANTRY DIVISION AND THE UNITED STATES ARMY.

 
 

 


After a hard day at Fire Support Base Pershing

MAP SHOWS FIRE BASE PERSHING AT (F), AND THE ROAD TOWARDS TRANG BANG. THE COMPANY B FIREFIGHT ON 9 FEB 1969  (MARKED WITH A DOWN  ARROW) WAS AT THE POINT WHERE THE ROAD CROSSED A STREAM)

 

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