Valor Friday

| September 16, 2022

LTG David E. Grange, Jr

David E. Grange Jr, a retired US Army lieutenant general, passed away at age 97 on 11 Sept 2021. He had an amazing career that spanned more than 40 years and three major wars. He’s a legend in the Army Ranger community, so much so that the grueling annual Best Ranger Competition is named in his honor.

Born in 1925, Grange was raised in Lake Ronkonkoma, a neighborhood on Long Island, New York. With the US embroiled in the Second World War, he enlisted into the Army in 1943, right after finishing high school.

Grange volunteered for airborne infantry training. At Camp Toccoa, Georgia, he was assigned to the 517th Parachute Infantry Regiment (PIR). This newly formed regiment was an independent organization assigned to various airborne infantry divisions through the rest of the war. They were attached first to the 17th Airborne Division, 82nd Airborne Division and later, the 13th Airborne Division.

The regiment was first engaged in combat in June 1944 in the Italian Campaign. They landed by boat at Civitavecchia on 18 June. Italy was a meat grinder for the Allied (mostly American and British) troops. The Germans had created a series of defensive lines across the peninsula, using the mountainous terrain of the country to their advantage.

The 517th PIR saw heavy action in Italy until they were pulled back on 26 June for the invasion of southern France. Grange made his first combat jump with the 517th PIR into southern France in the early morning hours of 15 August, 1944 as part of Operation Dragoon. Over three days of heavy fighting the men of the regiment fought at the towns of Le Muy, Les Arcs, La Motte and Draguignan before the Germans pulled back.

The regiment was awarded the French Croix de Guerre as a unit award for their participation in the liberation of France. They fought across France until 16 December, when they were advised of the German counterattack in what became known as the Battle of the Bulge. Two days later, the regiment was pulled back and sent to Foy, Belgium in the Ardennes.

The regiment played a key role in the vicious fighting that followed over the next several weeks. They then were pressed into the German Rhineland, where they fought until the very end of the war.

During their exemplary fighting record in the European Theater, the regiment suffered heavily. They had logged more than an 80% casualty rate. One man from the unit received the Medal of Honor for action over Christmastime at Foy. I talked about Melvin Biddle’s heroism before.

With the war in Europe over, the 517th departed the continent on 14 August, 1945 and returned to New York City on 22 August. The war in the Pacific had ended by then as well. They were inactivated in February 1946.

Grange remained in the Army post-war. He was with the 82nd Airborne Division when he was offered a commission in 1949. Completing Officer Candidate School in 1950, he was assigned as a fresh second lieutenant of infantry to the 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team (later renamed the 187th Airborne Infantry Regiment).

When North Korea invaded the South, the 187th ARCT was selected to reinforce the United Nations forces. They arrived just after the successful Invasion of Inchon in September 1950. The next month they made a combat jump into the areas of Sukchon and Sunchon, North Korea.

After fighting across the Korean Peninsula, the 187th led the second and final airborne assault of the war in March 1951. Grange was a rifle platoon leader during this time, and was promoted to command an infantry company until the end of the Korean War. He had logged two combat parachute jumps (one in WWII and one in Korea).

After his second war, Grange again continued his service. He was an instructor at the first Ranger School in the mid-50s and served with the 10th Special Forces Group in Germany.

The 1960s brought Grange into higher command positions. With the Vietnam War intensifying, Grange served several tours. He was an advisor in 1963-64, but with the large commitment of American troops to the war, he deployed twice more. First in 1967-1968 with the 506th Infantry Regiment (Airborne) of the 82nd Airborne Division and then as a brigade commander in the 101st Airborne Division from 1970-71.

Grange’s service in a third conflict meant that he was a member in the very limited group of men to have earned the Combat Infantryman Badge thrice. Though no official count exists, it’s estimated less than 400 men earned the distinction of three awards. As commanding general at Fort Benning, Grange had a special memorial at the National Infantry Museum in honor of those who hold three CIBs.

After Vietnam, Grange continued to advance in rank and held higher and higher command positions. Before commanding Benning, he was in command of the Ranger School, assistant division commander in the 4th Infantry Division, chief of staff in the I Corps in Korea, and commander of the 2nd Infantry Division.

Grange commanded the Sixth United States Army after his tour in charge of Fort Benning. He finally retired from the Army in 1984 with the rank of lieutenant general.

Among Grange’s many awards and decorations are three Silver Stars, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Soldier’s Medal, four Bronze Star Medals (with at least one “V” for valor), the Purple Heart, 27 Air Medals (with at least one “V” for valor), a valorous Joint Service Commendation Medal, and at least one valorous Army Commendation Medal. He received personal decorations from the governments of France, South Korea, and South Vietnam.

Grange’s son David L. Grange is also a retired officer. The younger Grange retired as a major general in 1999 after 33 years of service as an infantry and Special Forces soldier. He too is a recipient of three Silver Stars.

Category: Army, Historical, Valor, We Remember

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President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neande

Holy shit!
That such men lived, and walked among us.

Looking at their exploits…they didn’t WALK, they bounced around on their massive balls.

Forrest Bondurant

“Lord? Where do we get such men?”


A legend passes.

His son was Deputy Commander in USSOC back when I was assigned there. Also a legend in his own right.


I remember him from my time in Viet of the Nam 1970.
That such men lived indeed.
And to have a son follow. RIP Sir.

President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neande

He doesn’t look especially mean or ferocious, but if he said, “JUMP!”, you’d ask, “HOW HIGH SIR?” on the way up.

And if you DIDN’T Jump….im sure he’d kick you ass as high as he wanted it.

I wouldn’t ask a damn thing, just jump and hover until commanded to return to earth.


I dont understand how the chairs/tables didnt collapse under the massive weight of the Grange men’s balls. Mrs. Grange (both of them) must have been under constant fear of David E or David L. looking at them, forming a finger pistol and going, “KaPOW!”…which would result in every female in a 2 block radius becoming pregnant.

How in the HELL did a father/son combo pull down SIX Silver Stars, 6 Bronze Stars, and 3 Purple Hearts…amongst other awards. That’s usually a HELL of a distinguished UNIT, and this is just one family. Wow.


A little further reading in regards to David L. Grange (the son), in regards to his wife, Holly.

“…Grange is the daughter of Army Brigadier General Charles Edward Getz (1936–2018) and Mary Jane (McNulty) Getz (1938–2016). Her father was a 1959 West Point graduate and Vietnam veteran who earned the Distinguished Service Cross, six Silver Stars and numerous other awards for combat valor.”

A hero in his own right.


All that badassery in just one man.


Thanks again, Mason.


We will never see the likes of this man again in our military I suspect. They are too darn political these days.


Thank You, Mason, for sharing another story of Duty, Honor, Courage and Valor.

Rest In Peace, Sir.


Never Forget.


Young Poe unfortunately missed the honor of serving with him up close on his battalion staff as his CBR NCO. He took over as battalion commander of the 2d/506th after Poe had PCS’d to the 2d/327th in Vietnam.

Currahee, General!

Rest in peace…

Last edited 1 year ago by Poetrooper

Wish we had. The guy he replaced, LTC Harold Yow, was a real jerk and no pleasure to serve under…


David L. retired as a BG due to lack of time in grade as a 2 star. Read somewhere David L was rocking the boat too much, and not on the same song sheet w/ the senior brass at the E-ring 5-sided puzzle palace.


Like father, like son, another badass Airborne Ranger:

David L. Grange – Wikipedia