BRIGADIER GENERAL JOSEPH S. STRINGHAM

A Ranger from the beginning of his career in 1961, 2LT Stringham was appointed the XO of the 7th Infantry Division Long Range Patrol Detachment in the Republic of Korea on his first assignment after being commissioned from the USMA. 1LT Stringham served in the Republic of Vietnam in 1963-64-65 with Special Forces and in 1967-68 with 31st Infantry as a Company Commander and Battalion S-3. In January 1965, CPT Stringham assumed command of a Special Forces A Detachment Camp at Ben Cat, then under heavy pressure from a large Viet Cong unit. Here CPT Stringham gained his reputation as a combat leader who could and would gain and maintain contact with the enemy. Also during the 1965 offensive, CPT Stringham was directed to gather what remained of his camp's indigenous forces after the operation was neutralized by a major communist attack and form a Chinese mercenary battalion, code name "MIKE FORCE", the first of its kind and the subject of the John Wayne movie, "The Green Berets." In his third tour, CPT Stringham again served as a Company Commander and Battalion S-3. During the first moments of the Tet Offensive in 1968, C 4/31, under his command, threw back three all out assaults from a North Vietnamese Regiment. His personal example of calm resolve in the face of danger held the unit together, CPT Stringham personally manned one of his company's machine guns while his company successfully held off the assault from the enemy. From 1975-1979, Major, and then LTC, Stringham commanded three Infantry Battalions, one as a Major, culminating in his assumption of command as the fourth commander of the 1st Ranger Battalion. While he commanded the 1st Ranger Battalion he gained the nickname by his troops of "Smokin' Joe." His tenacity, integrity, lead-from-the-front leadership style and demanding of the highest standards of performance remain a part of the Battalion's fabric today. In the decade of the Eighties, COL Stringham would be assigned to yet another combat assignment as Commander of the U.S. Military Group in El Salvador during the critical phase of the insurgery. Under his direction and hands-on style, the Military Group successfully trained and developed the Salvadoran Armed Forces to the point where they created the security climate in which free elections were successfully held. For his service, COL Stringham received El Salvador's highest military decoration for bravery and meritorious service, "The Medal of Gold". After a successful experience in El Salvador, COL Stringham took command as the fourth Colonel of the newly formed 75th Ranger Regiment. Under his guidance the regiment became the mature and recognized organization it is today. COL Stringham remained in the SOF community upon leaving the 75th Ranger Regiment as the DCG of the USASOC, then 1st SOCOM. BG Stringham retired from active duty on November 30, 1992. He holds two DSM's, and four LOM's, seven combat decorations for valor to include the silver star and six foreign decorations for meritorious and combat service. He was awarded several foreign parachutist wings from the U.K, RVN, Israel, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, and Panama. His military service brings great credit upon himself, the Special Operations community, and the United States Army.

RANGERS LEAD THE WAY!!!