MSG (Ret.) William "Bill" Edward
February 24, 1927-
February 22, 2014
Columbus, GA- MSG (Ret.) William E. "Bill" Krilling died on February 22, 2014 at Columbus Hospice. A Memorial Celebration of Life Service with Full Military Honors will be held at Poole Range, Fort Benning, GA, March 29, 2014 starting at 4:00 p.m., with honors at 5:00p.m. A private inurnment will be Monday, March 31, 2014 at Main Post Cemetery, Fort Benning, GA.
William E. "Bill" Krilling was born February 24, 1927 in Marquette, Michigan to the late William and Gertrud Lena Krilling. Other than his parents; Bill was preceded in death by his brother, Alfred and two sisters; Betty and Gertrud, and his wife Oittlie Maureen Krilling. Survivers include his daughter; Kathleen Nickerson of Midland, GA, and granddaughter; Laura Nickerson of Midland, GA, Laurie Dunn and family, and may close friends.
William E. "Bill" Krilling joined the Army in 1946. He served in various communications positions until 1949 when he started shooting with the post team at Fort Belvoir, VA. In 1950, Bill participated in the nuclear detonation tests at Einwetok Atoll in the Pacific. During the Korean Conflict, Bill served as an infantry company First Sergeant. He was one of the youngest Master Sergeants to serve on active duty. Bill was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for gallantry in the Korean War saving three fellow soldiers who were badly wounded and carrying each one to safety although he was wounded himself. Between the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam, Bill continued his shooting earning many accolades such as the Distinguished Rifleman Badge, CISM Champion, and team member of the winning National Trophy Team Match. Following his service in Vietnam, Bill again returned to the United States Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU) serving as a shooter, instructor, and coach. During his shooting career, Bill won six national championship titles. He was the first person to shoot a perfect 3,200 on the NRA outdoor prone course of fire. He won four gold medals, one silver medal and two bronze medals in international competitions. He was also a member of two world record setting teams. He retired in 1971 at the rank of Master Sergeant. Bill rejoined the USAMU in May 1973 as the coach of the International Rifle Team. He also served as the U.S. National Team coach from 1981 to 1986 and has also served in several different capacities for both the U.S. Team and the International Shooting Sport Federation. Bill was named the U.S. Olympic Committee 1998 National Shooting Coach Of The Year. Bill has served on numerous ISSF juries for world-level competitions including the juries for five Olympic Games. Bill was inducted into the AMU Hall Of Fame in 1998. Between, May 1973, to March 2001 he coached his team to 105 CISM medals, 172 CAT medals, 84 Pan American medals, 185 World Cup medals, and 4 Olympic Medals, a grand total of 550 medals won in international competition. On October 21, 2006, the Krilling Shooting Range at Fort Benning, GA was dedicated in honor of MSG William E. "Bill" Krilling who was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial contribution may be made to PAWS Humane, 4900 Milgen Rd. Columbus, GA 31907, or USA Shooting, 1 Olympic Plz. #3, Colorado Springs, CO 80909. Condolences may be offered at www.shcolumbus.com.
Published in Columbus Ledger-Enquirer on Mar. 27, 2014