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College of Business and Technology

Homer L. Pease
Homer L. Pease

 

Major Homer L. Pease

The late Maj. Homer L. Pease decided in 1942, when he was only 13 years old, to join the Marine Corps. He convinced a stranger to play the role of his father and appeared at the Johnson City recruiting office.

After completing basic training and qualifying as an airborne paratrooper in the 101st Airborne, Pease jumped into France on D-Day, June 6, 1944. He was wounded, received a Purple Heart, and rejoined his unit to fight in Ardennes Forest, the Battle of the Bulge and at Berchtesgaden. He was again wounded, but this time his true age of 15 was discovered. He was reduced in rank from Sergeant to Private and sent home to Johnson City.

Pease attended Science Hill High School until his 16th birthday and then managed to sign on for a two-year hitch, getting as far as Fort Bragg, North Carolina, before he was sent home again.

After his high school graduation in 1950, Pease immediately joined the Tennessee Army National Guard and attended both East Tennessee State University and Milligan College.

After 12 years in civilian life, Pease again joined the military. In 1965, he volunteered to be a military advisor in Vietnam and completed the U.S. Army Ranger course. On November 19, 1966, he was killed in action at Ba Tri in Kien Hoa Province of South Vietnam while leading a ground combat operation.

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