Graduated from North Carolina State University in May 1966 with BA along with a commission as a 2nd Lt. in US Army. Began career at Ft. Belvoir, Va. completing Officer Combat Engineering course. Began Primary Helicopter training at Ft. Wolters, Mineral Wells, Texas January 1967. Upon completion of Primary, moved on to Ft. Rucker, Alabama to complete training and become a Rotary Helicopter Pilot.
After Ft. Rucker was assigned to South Vietnam and the 117th Assault Helicopter Company in November 1967. Flew with Pink Panther Platoon as a lift pilot for 6 months and then as a gunship pilot with the Sidewinder Platoon. Commanded the gun platoon and completed over 900 combat flight hours, leaving Vietnam in November 1968.
Spent final year as a Cpt. and Executive Officer in charge of a platoon of experienced Vietnam pilots teaching combat tactics to soon to be graduated pilots at Ft. Rucker.