Retired CSM Basil Plumley dies, Fort Benning mourns loss -, GA News Weather & Sports

Retired CSM Basil Plumley dies, Fort Benning mourns loss


Fort Benning is mourning the loss of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Basil Plumley. Plumley, 92, died Wednesday morning at Columbus Hospice after he was recently diagnosed with colon cancer.

He was a veteran of World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. 

During the Vietnam War, Plumley served as a sergeant major of the 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment. The unit's actions in 1965 during The Battle of Ia Drang were revisited in the book We Were Solders... and Young.

The book became a movie in 2002. We Were Soldiers, starred Mel Gibson; actor Sam Elliot portrayed CSM Plumley in the movie.

Plumley enlisted in the Army in 1942 and retired after 32 years of service.  He later worked at Martin Army Hospital on post before retiring after 15 years of service.  

He was laid to rest at the main post cemetery, alongside his wife who died earlier this year.

Awards and decorations:

Silver Star with one Oak Leaf Cluster
Bronze Star with one Oak Leaf Cluster
Purple Heart with three Oak Leaf Clusters
Army Air Medal with eight Oak Leaf Clusters
Army Presidential Unit Citation
Army Good Conduct Medal
American Campaign Medal
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with arrowhead device and one silver and three bronze campaign stars (eight  campaigns)
World War II Victory Medal
Army of Occupation Medal
National Defense Service Medal with one Gold Star
Korean Service Medal with one Arrowhead Device and three campaign stars
Vietnam Service Medal with eight campaign stars
Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation
Republic of Vietnam Presidential Citation
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation with Palm three Awards
United Nations Service Medal for Korea
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal
Republic of Vietnam Civil Actions Unit Award Honor Medal
Republic of Korea War Service Medal, Order of Saint Maurice
Combat Infantryman Badge (third award)
Master Parachutist Badge with five Combat Jump Stars
French Croix de Guerre 82nd Airborne
Belgian Croix de Guerre 82nd Airborne
Dutch Order of the Orange 82nd Airborne
Doughboy Award 1999
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