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George W. Dunaway
SMA George W. Dunaway
Born (1922-07-24)July 24, 1922
Died February 6, 2008(2008-02-06) (aged 85)
Place of birth Richmond, Virginia
Place of death Las Vegas, Nevada
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1943–1970
Rank Sergeant Major of the Army
Unit 82nd Airborne Division
101st Airborne Division
Battles/wars World War II
Vietnam War
Awards Army Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star
Purple Heart
Air Medal

George W. Dunaway (July 24, 1922 – February 6, 2008) was the second Sergeant Major of the Army. He was sworn in on September 1, 1968 and served until his term ended in September 1970. He was born in Richmond, Virginia, on July 24, 1922 and died on February 6, 2008 in Las Vegas, Nevada.[1] After attending the Airborne Course in August 1943, Sergeant Major Dunaway remained at Fort Benning, Georgia as an Airborne School Instructor until January 1945 when he joined the 517th Parachute Regimental Combat Team in France as a platoon sergeant. He returned to Fort Benning in December 1945 with assignment to the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment where he served as first sergeant of Company "A". In March 1948, Sergeant Major Dunaway was reassigned to the 82d Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. There he became a member of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment as Operations Sergeant, ascending to the Regimental Sergeant Major position in 1952. In early 1954 he transferred to the 187th Regimental Combat Team as the Combat Team Sergeant Major. He continued in that position for seven years during which he saw the Airborne Regimental Combat Team renamed as the 187th Infantry, when the 101st Airborne Division was reactivated on September 21, 1956, at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Departing Fort Campbell in 1961, he took the reins of the 1st Special Forces Group, 1st Special Forces in United States Army Pacific and later moved to the 5th Special Forces Group in Vietnam, where he remained until June 1967.

Returning to the United States, he re-joined the 101st Airborne Division as it prepared to move to Vietnam in the largest unit deployment by air in the history of the Vietnam War. Sergeant Major Dunaway arrived in Vietnam with the commanding general's command group on December 13, 1967. In February 1968, he moved to Camp Eagle in the I Corps Tactical Zone with the division where he remained until July 1968 when he was selected as the second Sergeant Major of the Army.

Awards and decorations[edit | edit source]

CIB2.png Combat Infantry Badge, 2 awards
US Army Airborne master parachutist badge.gif Master Parachutist Badge
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star
Legion of Merit
Bronze Star Medal with Valor device
Purple Heart
Air Medal with Valor device
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Army Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Army Good Conduct Medal
European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Medal
World War II Victory Medal
National Defense Service Medal
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Vietnam Service Medal with four service stars
Vietnam Armed Forces Honor Medal
Bronze star
Vietnam Gallantry Cross with star
Vietnam Campaign Medal

Notes[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Government document "http://www.army.mil/leaders/leaders/sma/former/dunaway.html".
"The Sergeants Major of the Army," Daniel K. Elder, Center of Military History, 2003

Military offices
Preceded by
William O. Wooldridge
Sergeant Major of the Army
Succeeded by
Silas L. Copeland

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