Lewis L. Millett

Infobox Military Person
name= Lewis L. Millett
born= birth date and age|1920|12|15
placeofbirth= Mechanic Falls, Maine

allegiance= United States of America
branch= United States Army
serviceyears=1937-1940; 1942-1973
rank= Colonel
unit=Company E, 27th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division
battles= World War II Korean War Vietnam War
awards= Medal of Honor Distinguished Service Cross Silver Star Legion of Merit (3) Bronze Star Purple Heart (4) Croix de Guerre (France) Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry

Lewis L. Millett (born 1920) was awarded the Medal of Honor during the Korean War for leading the last major American bayonet charge.


Millett served during World War II and the Korean War for seven years.Lewis Millett was born on December 15, 1920 in Mechanic Falls, Maine. He joined the National Guard when he was 17 years old. In 1940, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps where he served as an air gunner; he joined the Canadian Army when it appeared that the U.S. would not enter the war.cite web|accessdate=2007-12-31
title=Lewis Lee "Red" Millett
] In 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving with the 1st Armored Division. During World War II, he earned Bronze Star and after reaching the rank of sergeant, he was awarded a battlefield commission. After the War, he joined the 103rd Infantry of the Maine National Guard.

He graduated from Bates College in Lewiston, Maine in 1949.

During the Korean War, as Company Commander of E Company, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry, 25th Division, near Soam-Ni, Korea, Millett lead his men in "the most complete bayonet charge by American troops since the Civil War." On February 7, 1951, Millett led his men up Hill 180 as part of Operation Punch. Throwing grenades, turning back to call for more firepower when he saw the ground ahead crawling with Chinese, he seemed constantly upright and exposed standing under fire, urging the others on. At the crest he took shrapnel from a grenade. The men saw him silhouetted on the skyline and heard him now, shouting "Use grenades and cold steel!" Of 47 enemy dead, 18 had been killed by the bayonet. For his courage and leadership in the action, Captain Millett was awarded the Medal of Honor.

Millett was presented the Medal of Honor on July 5, 1951 by President Harry S. Truman in a White House ceremony.cite web|accessdate=2007-12-31
format=MS Word
title=Lewis "Lee" Red Millett, Captain, U.S. Army
work=U.S. Army Ranger Recipients of the Medal of Honor
series=For Acts of Valor "Above and Beyond the Call of Duty"
publisher=HomeOfHeroes, Inc.

In 1956, after the Korean War, Millet attended Ranger School. He was then assigned to the 101st Airborne Division. While serving with the 101st, then-Major Milett was selected to un the Division Recondo (for Reconnaissance-Commando) School, an on-post alternative to the Ranger School at Fort Benning. The 101st had neither the funds to send, or Benning the capacity to accept, the number of Screaming Eagles who needed the specialized light infantry patrolling training. Millett led and trained the instructors who provided that training, which passed through the 101st until the Screaming Eagles deployed to Vietnam.

After his time at Fort Campbell, Millett went on to a variety of special operations advisory assignments in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam period. He helped found the Royal Thai Army Ranger School in conjunction with a detachment (the only organization ever designated both Ranger and Special Forces) of the 46th Special Forces Company. The detachment was made up for former Fort Benning Ranger Instructors (RI's) who'd gone on to Special Forces. At this time Millett earned the Royal Thai Army's Master Parachute Badge.

Millett retired in 1973.

Colonel Millett's awards include the Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, Legion of Merit (with 2 oak leaf clusters), Bronze Star, Air Medal (with numeral 2), Purple Heart (with 3 oak leaf clusters), Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry and Vietnam Campaign Ribbon, the Ranger Tab, US and Thai Master Parachutist Badges among others.cite web
title=Korean War Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient Captain Lewis Lee Millett, US Army

In 1985, his son was a member of the 101st's 187th "Rakkasan" Infantry Regiment serving as a volunteeer augmentee to Task Force 3/502 Infantry. On 12 December 1985, he was one of 248 Screaming Eagles killed when the chartered airliner carrying them home from peacekeeping duty in the Sinai crashed upon takeoff at Gander, Newfoundland.

COL Millett still serves as the Honorary Colonel of the 27th "Wolfhound" Infantry Regiment.

In June 2000, he visited Seoul, Korea and was the keynote speaker at the Army's 225th Birthday Ball at the Grand Hyatt Hotel. All eight of the living Korean War Medal of Honor recipients were present that night.

In 2005, Colonel Lewis L. Millett (retired) was one of the four surviving Maine Medal of Honor recipients.

Honors and awards

At Osan Air Base in South Korea, "Millett Road" is named after Colonel Millett running up Hill 180, the hill where he led the legendary bayonet charge

Medal of Honor citation

Rank: Captain, U.S. Army Service: Company Commander - Company E, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment, 25th Division Place and date: Vicinity of Hill 180, Soam-Ni, Korea, 7 February 1951. Entered service at: Mechanic Falls, Maine. Born: 15 December 1920, Mechanic Falls, Maine.
G.O. No.: 69, 2 August 1951.cite web
title=National Infantry Museum: Case 23
publisher=U.S. Army Infantry


:Captain Millett distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action. While personally leading his company in an attack against a strongly held position, he noted that the 1st Platoon was pinned down by small arms, automatic, and antitank fire. Captain Millett ordered the 3rd Platoon forward, placed himself at the head of the two platoons, and, with fixed bayonet, led the assault up the fire-swept hill. In the fierce charge, he bayoneted two enemy soldiers and boldly continued on, throwing grenades, clubbing and bayoneting the enemy, while urging his men forward by shouting encouragement. Despite vicious opposing fire, the whirlwind hand-to-hand assault carried to the crest of the hill. His dauntless leadership and personal courage so inspired his men that they stormed into the hostile position and used their bayonets with such lethal effect that the enemy fled in wild disorder. During this fierce onslaught, Captain Millett was wounded by grenade fragments but refused evacuation until the objective was taken and firmly secured. The superb leadership, conspicuous courage, and consummate devotion to duty demonstrated by Captain Millett were directly responsible for the successful accomplishment of a hazardous mission and reflect the highest credit on himself and the heroic traditions of the military service.cite web
url = http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/koreanwar.html
title = "Millett, Lewis L."
work = Medal of Honor Recipients: Korean War
year = 2007
publisher= CMH, U.S. Army

ee also

*List of Medal of Honor recipients
*List of Korean War Medal of Honor recipients
*List of Bates College people



:"This article incorporates text in the public domain from the United States Army."

*"United States of America's Congressional Medal of Honor Recipients and Their Official Citations", Office of the Adjutant General, State of Maine. (public domain) [http://www.medalofhonor.com/LewisMillett.htm Maine Site]

*cite web
url = http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/koreanwar.html
title = "Millett, Lewis L."
work = Medal of Honor Recipients: Korean War
date = July 16, 2007
publisher= Center of Military History (CMH), United States Army

*cite web|accessdate=2007-12-30
title=National Infantry Museum: Case 23
date=November 5, 2007
publisher=U.S. Army Infantry

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