McKINNEY, CECIL CURTIS
McKINNEY, CECIL CURTIS
Rank / Branch:
SP5 E-5, U.S. ARMY
101ST AIRBORNE DIVIS
Date of Birth:
Awards & Decorations:
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CECIL CURTIS MCKINNEY, SPECIALIST FIVE, U.S. ARMY, MIDLAND, MIDLAND COUNTY, TEXAS
AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Combat Medic Badge, Parachute Wings, Bronze Star w/V and one Oak leaf Cluster, Purple Heart, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with one silver star and 2 bronze campaign stars, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Republic of Vietnam Military Merit Medal and Vietnam Cross of Gallantry w/Palm.
Cecil Curtis McKinney was born in El Reno, Oklahoma and he grew up in Midland, Texas. He was the son born to Willie L. and Cecil McKinney. He graduated from Midland Lee High School in 1965, was a 2 year letterman in football and then attended Texas Tech University in Lubbock.
Guard on Midland Lee Football Team-2 Letters
Midland Lee High School-1965
He enlisted in the Army from Midland and took basic training at Fort Bliss, Texas and then attended combat medic training at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. He applied and was accepted for parachute training at Fort Benning, Georgia. Upon completion of this training, he was levied for Vietnam and departed May 20, 1967. He was with the 173rd Airborne Brigade his first year and he extended for six months. He was assigned as a combat medic with B Company, 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division. He did several missions as a medic with Tigerforce Recon of the 101st Division. As his tour was winding down, he was assigned as a senior medic with the Battalion Aid Station. Just before he was to depart Vietnam, one of the field medics had received a emergency leave home and Specialis McKinney volunteered to take his place for a few days, until a replacement could be located. He did this in order to say good-bye to his comrades. It was here that he was assisting the loading of a medevac helicopter during a hostile engagement. The helicopter had landed on an incline at an angle and when Specialist McKinney was attempting to come under the blades, he was struck and died immediately.
Cecil in Vietnam shortly before his death
Specialist McKinney was deeply devoted to his church and his family. He also enjoyed sports. He was buried at the Fairview Cemetery in Midland with full military honors. His father passed away in 1978 and his mother currently lives in San Angelo.
Fairview Cemetery, Midland, Tx