American Warrior

by Gary O’Neal & David Fisher

In July 2010, Gary O’Neal was inducted into the United States Army Ranger Hall of Fame. His plaque reads:

“Chief Warrant Officer Gary L. O’Neal is inducted into the Ranger Hall of Fame for nearly 40 years of service to his country and its allies. From Vietnam through both Gulf Wars, Chief Warrant Officer O’Neal served as a private, noncommissioned officer, Special Forces warrant officer, and spe...cial operations GS civil servant, in conventional and unconventional warfare on land, air, and sea. He has served with every branch of the US military, on every continent in the world. Ranger O’Neal bears scars from bullet wounds, shrapnel wounds, and bayonet-knife wounds from at least nine separate combat engagements. His service is characterized by nearly every combat qualification, multiple combat tours in Vietnam to include incursions into Laos and Cambodia, and long periods of perilous service in virtually every country of Central and South America. He has served on personal security duty for general officers in the Middle East, and also trained tens of thousands of American and foreign military personnel in every theater of the world. His career is highlighted by Ranger-LRRP duty during Vietnam, his selection for duty with the US Army Parachute Team (Golden Knights), Department of Defense’s first Antiterrorist Team (Blue Light), and the US Army’s first Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) Course. His awards and decorations include the Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with “V” device, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal with “V” device, Army Achievement Medal (3), Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Gold Star, Combat Infantry Badge, Special Forces and Ranger Tabs, Master Parachutist Badge, Master Military Freefall Badge, and Combat Diver Badge.