ROLLINS, WILLIAM PAUL
ROLLINS, WILLIAM PAUL
Rank / Branch:
WO1, U.S. ARMY
Date of Birth:
HOSTILE, CRASH HELIC
Awards & Decorations:
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WILLIAM PAUL ROLLINS, WARRANT OFFICER ONE, U. S. ARMY, SNYDER, SCURRY COUNTY, TEXAS
AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Army Aviator Wings, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Air Medal and 5 Oak Leaf Clusters, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal.
William Paul Rollins was born in Snyder, Texas the son of Doris June Hight Rollins and Elza Alvin Rollins. He was joined by a younger brother Mark born in 1955. He preferred to use his middle name of Paul. He attended Snyder schools and graduated from Snyder High School with the Class of 1966. According to his mother, he had been involved in a car accident when he was in high school and he had a rod in his leg and he would limp when he was fatigued.
Snyder High School-1966
After high school, he attended Howard County Junior College in Big Spring. His mother indicated he came home one day and stated he was joining the Army to help pay for his education. Everyone was surprised that he could pass the physical with his leg, but he did. He joined the U. S. Army and was accepted in the Warrant Officer Helicopter Flight Training Program in the early spring of 1967. He completed basic training at Fort Polk, Louisiana and then started flight training at Fort Wolters, Texas near Mineral Wells, Texas as a member of the 6th Warrant Officer Candidate Company, Class 67-25 B-3.
After his primary flight training, he completed the advanced course at Fort Rucker, Alabama with the Class 68-1 in February 1968 and was commissioned a Warrant Officer One. Mr. Rollins married Joan McKinley, his high school sweetheart when he came home for leave before flight school began.
He started his tour in Vietnam on April 24, 1968 and was assigned as a helicopter pilot with the 11th Armored Cavalry regiment. On September 29, 1968, he was the co-pilot on a UH-1C Huey that was performing aerial reconnaissance for a ground armored unit when the helicopter was struck repeatedly by small arms ground fire. The helicopter crashed and killed all on board, which included the aircraft commander, WO1 Rollins, the crew chief and the gunner.
Hillside Memorial Gardens Cemetery, Snyder, Texas
Mr. Rollins was buried with full military honors in the Hillside Memorial Gardens Cemetery in his hometown of Snyder, Texas. He was awarded a posthumous Bronze Star for meritorious service and a Purple Heart. He was survived by his wife, his parents and his younger brother Mark.
His wife remarried and now lives in New Caney, Texas. His father passed away in 1997 and his mother passed away in 2009. His brother passed away in Mullin, Texas in 2013.