George William Casey

Major General
Army of the United States
09 March 1922 - 07 July 1970
Allston, Massachusetts
Panel 09W Line 126

CIB (2 awards)
Army Aviator

Master Parachutist


George W Casey

The database page for George William Casey

14 Jan 2003

When we were in Cambodia 1 May though 30 June 1970 we (B Co, 2/5 Cav, 1st Cav Div) were at the Fish Hook ... we had captured a nice cache and we were going through it. Major General Casey, the Division Commander, and his boss General Abrams were in our Area of Operations. I was out on OP with my M-60 machine-gun, on this trotter that was out about 100 meters from the perimeter and I heard this noise behind my position. I swung the machinegun around and released the safety -- and I was looking at a 4-star General who was yelling "GI, GI, DON'T SHOOT!". I quickly yelled out "You have just scared the crap out of me SIR!!!" General Abrams was grinning sheepishly. He thanked me for not shooting him, and asked me if I would like a 3 day R&R in-country when we got out of Cambodia? I said "Well, yes sir". He laid down beside me and asked me where I was from, I said Alaska, and he said "Man, this hot weather must be kicking your butt". I said "Yes sir, as long as the NVA aren't, sir, I will be fine." That was the only time I ever had a 4-star as my assistant gunner!

Later that afternoon we had an awards and decorations ceremony, and the Generals gave out the citations. General Casey was very nice, and he was well respected by all 1st Cavalry elements. He was honest and just had that "General" look (whatever that is)! When we had got back to Vietnam we heard that he had been killed in a helicopter crash, and the Alpha Blues were the friendlies who had gone out to the crash site to recover the bodies. The Blues were a platoon sized element which went in after downed American aircraft ... every other man carried a M-60 machinegun.

We flew our flag at half-mast ... we ALL felt the loss of General Casey! May God Bless his Family, Friends, Loved Ones, and all the other Americans who never made it back to the World. And for those of us who did -

"Welcome Home, Brothers and Sisters!
Black Knights, Sir.
Battlin' Bastards, Scunion to the Onion!!!"

From a 1st Cav Division trooper,
Alfred M. Cummings (AKA "Eskimo")
Houston, Alaska
E-Mail address not available

23 Mar 2003

God bless General Casey and his son, current General George Casey, working at the Pentagon as of the date of this note, 3/23/03.

24 Sep 2003

Wouldn't General Casey's buttons just burst with pride over the accomplishments of his son, Major General George W. Casey, JR. What a tribute to General Casey, SR., and his family.

I've had the privilege of knowing both father and son, George JR. being a golf club friend and attending the same high school, Boston College High School, Dorchester, MA. George was Class of '65; his brother Peter and I were Class of '67. I often saw George Sr. in church, during the Vietnam War years and wondering about his role in the War.

While at sea as a Merchant Marine sailor in July, 1970, I heard on my marine radio that Gen. Casey was missing in action. That was among the most traumatic moments of my life. My legs weakened as I slumped down on my bunk.

God Bless The George W. Casey Family!!

Thomas W. Burke
Charlotte, NC


24 September 2003

The Secretary of Defense, Donald H. Rumsfeld, announced today that the President of the United States has nominated United States Army Lieutenant General George William Casey Jr for appointment to the rank of General and assignment as the next Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Army.

LTG Casey is currently serving as Director, Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.

submitted by


Biographer of the lost of the Vietnam era
1955 to 1975

" R E M E M B R A N C E "

Clay Marston

28 Sep 2003

22 Oct 2003

As a Skytrooper from Vietnam to Cambodia and back, General Casey was always there with his troops. He visted me in the hospital and ensured my mail was brought to me that day. Later in the jungle in Cambodia we met again - he was always concerned about our health and success of our mission. As a young nineteen year old he was my image of a great leader after whom I later tailored my 24 year career. As he pinned on my E-5 stripes with nine months in country I swore then that I would not let him down. After our last stand down in Bien Hoa, he gave us a pep talk and in the rain he mounted his chopper to go see the troops over the mountain in the hospital. Next morning we were told he was gone. And all these years I still stop to take a moment for him. God Bless his family.

Jaime G. Rueda
First Sergeant, U S Army (Retired)
Cheyenne One

21 Oct 2004

I worked for then Colonel Casey when he was the Chief of Staff for the 1st Cav Div in Vietnam in 1967. He was without question the finest officer I ever worked for, and probably the finest man I ever knew. And he was a staunch Red Sox fan. In fact, we made a bet on the series in 1967 and he sent me the $10 he lost. With what the Red Sox did to the Yankees in the 2004 ALCS, I am sure that the general now has a big grin on his face, wherever he is. May he rest in peace; the curse is fading.

Joseph G. Ward II
LTC, US Army (Retired)

2 Nov 2004

The best memorial to a fallen soldier is the legacy he leaves behind. MG George W. Casey's legacy lives on in his son, General George W. Casey, Jr. Here are a few personal thoughts on my friend General George W. Casey, Jr.

I first met MAJ (P) Casey just before he took command of the 1st Battalion, 10th Infantry, 4th Infantry Division, at Fort Carson, Colorado. It was my privilege to serve under then LTC Casey as a company commander of Echo Company and Headquarters Company, respectively. In my 23 years of service, General Casey was without equal. He epitomized everything I could hope for in a soldier, leader, and commanding officer.

My fondest memory of LTC Casey was during our rotation to the National Training Center (NTC) for a desert warfare exercise. During that rotation we defeated the Opposing Force (OPFOR) in every force-on-force battle. This was, I believe, the first time this had ever been done. Usually, the OPFOR was the victor at NTC. LTC Casey had prepared us well. He always told us that we weren’t going to the NTC to train. We were going to WIN.

During one of the engagements, my ITV (Improved TOW Vehicle) Company destroyed the OPFOR regiment in an area called Alligator Ridge. I claim no credit for our success. This was a fight between soldiers - soldiers that had been superbly trained and prepared by a great leader, LTC Casey. After the battle, LTC Casey drove up to my M113 Armored Personnel Carrier, shook my hand, and said, “Parker, you pulled my chestnuts out of the fire”. This was classic Casey. Always giving credit to others. Never taking any credit for himself.

After leaving Fort Carson in 1988 for an ROTC assignment at Mississippi State University, I received a call from COL Casey to tell me that LTC Jack Chiapuzio, our former Battalion Executive Officer at Fort Carson, had tragically died from staph infection after an accident on a 4-wheeler. Almost all of the officers who had served with LTC Chiapuzio returned to Fort Carson for the memorial service. It was more like a family reunion than a memorial service. Casey had his boys back together again. We mourned our loss, reflected on times gone by, and honored the memory of a fallen comrade. Casey would never leave a fallen soldier on the battlefield. He called and we came to honor our dead.

Perhaps the greatest experience of my life was to know and serve with George W. Casey, Jr. He was and is one of America’s finest soldiers and leaders. And I cannot close without saying a word about his dear wife, Sheila. We loved her for her unwavering support of the troops and their families.

May God bless George W. Casey, Jr., as he leads our soldiers in Iraq. His father would be proud.

Johnny Parker
MAJ, INF (Retired)
Wild Bunch Six

3103 Arcadia Drive Tuscaloosa, AL 35404

28 Mar 2005

From Dec 1968 - Dec 1969 I was assigned to the Medical Battalion of the 1st Cavalry Div (Airmobile). I knew Brigadier General Casey as the ADC for Operations during that period. Major General Elvy B. Roberts was the Division Commander. BG Casey was an outstanding officer and a real gentleman. As the Medical Battalion S-3 I briefed him on several occasions as to the medical support posture within the Division. To a man, everyone that met Gen Casey loved him and admired him. A real soldier!

From a fellow soldier in 1st Cav Div (Airmobile),
James W. Hawkins, Jr.
MAJ (then CPT), MSC
USAR, Ret.

21 Jun 2005

I served as an Infantry Commander in Vietnam and Cambodia in the 2/8th under General Casey's 1st Cav Division. All expected he would be the next Chief of Staff, his presence was so commanding yet disarmingly approachable to anyone. After we returned from the gruelling Cambodian experience and received a 3 day in-camp R&R, General Casey showed up for our awards ceremony. I received a Bronze Star and many others of my Company similar awards. We had uncovered the largest medical cache inside Cambodia which took 32 Chinook loads to back haul to South Vietnam. Even an Air Force General from Saigon showed up to see that sight!

I spent time with General Casey after the ceremony and enjoyed his company very much, very impressive. Thus we were all saddened to go back to the bush and hear the sad news of his helicopter crash.

I am glad his capable son heads up our Iraq efforts!

Kirby Smith
Former Army Captain

28 Sep 2005

I served under General Casey when he was only a Colonel and was commander of the 2d Brigade of the First Cavalry Division. This man was loved by his troops and always had our survival and safety as a top priority. Gen. Casey was a man anyone could talk to about any problem. He made time to listen to the troops under his comand. I remember talking to him about his family, his daughters and his young son. I was just a young kid, a Spec 4, and he took time out of his busy life to talk to and listen to me. I know Gen. Casey is watching proudly over his son right now. Gen. Casey was the classiest man I have ever met in the military. I am proud to have served under him in Vietnam in 1966-67 from the Bong Song Plains to the Cambodian border.

From a Skytrooper,
Ronald A. Dula
999 Renninger Road #10, Portage Lakes, Ohio 44319

30 Sep 2005

I write here as a civilian who never was never actually acquainted with Gen. George Casey, Sr. I write as a close friend of his grandson, Sean Casey. I met Gen. George Casey, Jr. over a Thanksgiving break while a student at Syracuse University. He was a colonel at the time, and I introduced myself with "Hello, Colonel. Thank you for having me here this weekend." And he said in turn as he put his arm around my neck, "Sean, just call me George." He and his wife, Sheila, and their two sons, Sean and Ryan, made me feel a part of their family that weekend. They are all generous and kind and wonderful people. George, Sr. would be very proud.

Since that first meeting, I have crossed paths with George, Jr. two more times. The first was at a Syracuse graduation ceremony where we sat side by side at an intimate family dinner. We exchanged stories and laughed at similar experiences. He made me feel his equal and I knew I was in the company of greatness. The next time we met was at Sean's wedding. This time when I saw him I addressed him as General Casey. He looked at me, grabbed my hand, pulled me in close and hugged me with his other hand, and said, "Thank you, Sean." All weekend I addressed him as General, and at one point he told me it wasn't necessary. I simply said, "Yes, sir, it is". He smiled and nodded. He is a humble man. He is a great man, and I am so privileged to have known him. Our forces in Iraq could not have a more prudent leader. His father would be so proud!

From a friend,
Sean Moriarty
Lake Mary, Fl

24 Dec 2005

General George Casey Jr. was the finest officer I ever had the pleasure of serving with. He was a true soldier in every sense of the word. As one of his company first sergeants D 1/10 Infantry and later C 1/10 Infantry (the "Widowmakers") at Fort Carson, Colorado he was totally dedicated to his men. He really cared about his soldiers and their families. As an enlisted man, you sometimes feel that officers only truly care about other officers. If you knew LTC Casey when he was my battalion commander of 1/10 INF, you would never feel that way again. This man cared about everyone, even my two little boys who are now men and have wives and children of their own.

LTC Casey used to wait at the line of departure to make sure that we all crossed with our tracks and tanks when we were suppose to. I can remember seeing him standing there with my wife and two sons saluting with his bad right hand as we passed by. My sons liked to watch the vehicles heading for the "crowsfoot", the tank trails that led us down range. He was ever-watchful over his soldiers.

I was very proud to have known him and I was especially proud when I received a call from our then Command Sergeant Major John Irwin, to tell me that he was invited to see General Casey receive his fourth star. I would, at 60 years old now, still fight for General Casey.

From a friend and fellow soldier,
1SG (Ret) Donald R. Fairthorne Sr.

04 Jan 2006

I had the honor of serving under General Casey in Cambodia and Vietnam. In August of 1970 I was the Liaison Officer for Troop A, 1st Squadron, 9th Cavalry, close to ending my second tour with the unit. I still vividly recall my one personal encounter with the General.

At one morning briefing in the Song Be Tactical Operations Center, General Casey and his staff showed up by suprise (at least it was a surprise to me). During my briefing of 1/9 activity, I mentioned that a probe had occurred during the night on the north perimeter of Quan Loi and that an A Troop Pink Team would be working the south perimeter that morning. General Casey asked, "If the probe was on the north side, why are you reconning the south side?"

I had been handed the information about 15 minutes earlier and before I could stop myself I replied, "I don't know, Sir. I don't explain 'em, I just report 'em."

Half the officers in the room busted out laughing and the other half stared intently at their feet. I'm not sure what General Casey's position was, but after a second he replied very calmly, "In the future, make a point of finding out." to which I replied, "Yes Sir!"

A short time later the General was killed. From my understanding he was on his way to visit some wounded Troopers. He was a fine leader and highly regarded in the Division.

From a "Skytrooper",
Glen Senkowski, "Apache 35", "Apache 22"
Cocoa Beach, Florida

06 Jan 2006

I served with MG Casey Jr. when he was the commander of 1st Armored Division in Germany in the 2000-2001 timeframe. I respect him more than any other General Officer I've encountered in my career. He did an incredible job preparing the Division for Kosovo - the best part was that he let his staff and commanders do their job - he gave us his commander's intent, desired end state, defined what he considered mission success, and let us go. While he gave azimuth checks along the way, his demeanor and the way he treated us made us want to do whatever it took to ensure the Division was successful. I would have given anything if he'd still been the CG when we trained for and deployed to Iraq in the spring of 2003, but it is better that he is there now - he can influence the outcome more at his current position and troops will benefit from his leadership. The first thing I thought of when I found out he was going to take command of all forces in Iraq was "I wish I could go back to Iraq and work for him!

Jack Usrey
MAJ, US Army
Special Operations Command Pacific

17 Jan 2007

I first met General Casey Jr and his lovely wife, Sheila, when he took command of the 1st Battalion, 10th Infantry, 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized) in Fort Carson back in the mid 80s. As a young SSG (P, assigned as the PAC Supervisor) I was very impressed by his leadership and caring attitude toward the people under his command. Years later I had again the priviledge of working under then-Brigadier General Casey while assigned as the G1 SGM for the 1st Armored Division in Germany during Operation Joint Endeavor in Bosnia. All these years General Casey has been a friend and a mentor whose leadership I have used throughout my military as well as civilian life. Perhaps my greatest experience of my life has been to have had the honor to work for one of the best leaders the U.S. Army has ever known. I would again without any hesitation serve under General Casey if the opportunity ever arose. I am sure General Casey Sr would have been proud of his son's accomplishments.

God bless General Casey and his family.

Edgardo A. Menjivar
Sergeant Major (Retired)
4940 Wineskin Circle, Colorado Springs, Co 80916

06 Jan 2008

It was an honor to serve in the 2/8th, 1st Cav under General Casey during 1970.

I often think of his leadership from the front impact he had and still has on those who knew him. Making the extra effort to land in a combat hot zone and present D Co 2/8 field valor awards or allowing the S3 to his command helicopter to be used to resupply troops in heavy contact off of FSB Illingsworth, to standing beside him as he carried out his wounded after a combat flight - he always put his troops first. I turned 60 this year, 37 years later I still wish I could shake his hand again and say thanks. We pride ourselves on the "We will never forget" pledge, today I stand honored to say he is one man I will never forget. My sincere regards to his family.

From a 1st Cavalry soldier,
Glen Beasley

06 Mar 2008

I was not an officer in Vietnam, I was a grunt, a country boy from Tennessee. After returning from Cambodia General Casey welcomed us back and praised us on a job well done. He was not like other officers, you could see the care and concern in his eyes, his sincerity. The next day I heard that he had been killed ... such a tragedy, such a loss, my heart ached. He was a great leader, a good man, brought down in his prime. Such a great loss to his family and to our country.

Stan Cotner
2/8 Cav. 69-70

Notes from The Virtual Wall

At approximately 0900, 07 July 1970, two helicopters of the 11th GS Aviation Company departed Phuoc Vinh on an administrative flight to Cam Ranh Bay. The lead aircraft, UH-1H tail number 69-15138, carried the following personnel:
  • 1LT William Frederick Michel, pilot, 11th GS Avn Co;
  • MGEN George William Casey, copilot, Commanding General, HHC, 1st Cav Div;
  • SGT Ronald Francis Fuller, crew chief, 11th GS Avn Co;
  • SGT William Lee Christenson, gunner, 11th GS Avn Co;
  • SGM Kenneth William Cooper, passenger, HHC, 1st Cav Div;
  • MAJ John A. Hottell III, passenger, HHC, 1st Cav Div; and
  • SGT Vernon Kenneth Smolik, Jr., passenger, HHC, 1st Cav Div.
General Casey, accompanied by members of his immediate staff, intended to visit wounded soldiers hospitalized at Cam Ranh Bay.

After take off, the number two aircraft, UH-1H tail number 68-16502, joined on lead for the climb to altitude. Lead requested radar flight following as the flight climbed to 4500 feet heading northeast toward Bao Loc. The Song Be Control Center terminated radar service with the two aircraft in visual conditions above cloud decks. At about 0930, lead reported his position as 25 miles south/southeast of Dalat, level at 6500 feet. Shortly thereafter, lead began a left descending turn through a hole in the cloud deck; "502" followed. "502" sighted the ground at about 3500 feet, with "138" still in a descent. The flight descended into a valley bounded on either side by steep ridges. As "138" led the way up the valley, the flight encountered intermittant clouds. "138" reported that he was in instrument conditions and that he was going to make a 180 degree turn to return to visual conditions. "502", who had lost visual contact with "138", initiated a climb to get on top of the cloud layers, breaking out at 7000 feet. At this point he was unable to establish radio contact with "138" and proceeded to Dalat, about 15 to 20 minutes distant.

Subsequent search-and-resue efforts located the wreckage of 1LT Michel's UH-1H on 9 July. It had crashed and burned on a hillside. All seven men aboard the aircraft died in the crash.

Major General George W. Casey had taken command of the 1st Cavalry on 12 May 1970. He was one of eleven Flag and General officers who died in Vietnam, six in combat and five in accidents.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a 1st Cav Division trooper,
Alfred M. Cummings (AKA "Eskimo")
Houston, Alaska
E-Mail address not available

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 14 Jan 2003
Last updated 03/26/2008