Lieutenant General, USA
General Hal Moore graduated from West Point in 1945 and completed advanced studies at George Washington University and Harvard University. He was a paratrooper in Japan and at Ft. Bragg, N.C. where he volunteered for the Army's Airborne Test Section. He conducted 135 test jumps with experimental parachutes and associated equipment for the Army, Air Force, and C.I.A.
General Moore commanded two infantry companies in the Korean War. In November 1965, he and his understrength battalion of 450 troopers fought and won the first major battle of the American War in Vietnam against over 2,000 North Vietnamese Regulars.
Other significant service includes NATO duty in Norway, command of a 17,000 man Infantry Division in Korea, command of a large Army post of over 35,000 in California, and Personnel Chief of the Army. In 2000, he was appointed "Doughboy Of The Year" by the Army Chief of Infantry. In February 2003, he was selected by the U.S. Military Academy Association of Graduates as a "Distinguished Graduate."
General Moore was a Master Parachutist and a qualified Army Helicopter Pilot and held two Combat Infantry Badges, the Purple Heart and the Distinguished Service Cross among other awards for valor. He received accelerated promotions six times.
After 32 years, he retired from the Army, and for four years, was Executive Vice President of a major Colorado ski area. He co-authored the # 1 New York Times Best Seller, We Were Soldiers Once-And Young, published in 1992. The movie "We Were Soldiers" was based on the book and Mel Gibson stars as then Lt. Col. Hal Moore. The movie was released by Paramount Pictures in March 2002.
General Moore returned to Vietnam seven times after 1990 and met with the commanders who opposed him in battle and walked the battlefields with them. General Moore and his wife, Julie, lived in Auburn. Julie died in 2004.
His proudest achievement in life was that, in numerous battles spanning across two wars, he never lost a man as a P.O.W. or M.I.A.
Lieutenant General Hal Moore died on February 10, 2017.