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Howard W. Penney

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Lt. Gen. Howard W. Penney, of Phoenix & Peoria, AZ passed away on Friday, June 25, 2004, in Peoria, where he has lived since retiring from the Army in 1974. General Penney's final duty prior to retirement was to organize and command the Defense Mapping Agency, which at the direction of the President, combined and consolidated the worldwide mapping and charting functions of the Army, Navy and Air Force. He was born in Royal Oak, Michigan, the son of William G. and Gertrude R. Penney. He grew up in Big Beaver (now Troy) and graduated from Royal Oak High School. He attended the University of Detroit and was then appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point from which he graduated in 1940 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Army Corps of Engineers. General Penney's assignments included duty as Chief of Army Legislative Liaison in which he directed for the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Staff of the Army's relations with Congress. He served in Germany in command of 15,000 troops and later as Chief Engineer for the U.S. Army in Europe. In water resource planning and construction, he served as supervisor of nationwide flood control for the Chief of Engineers in Washington; he commanded the U.S. Army Engineer District in Tulsa and directed for the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Engineers, the nationwide comprehensive water resources planning involving the Corps of Engineers, the Departments of Interior and Agriculture and the Public Health Service. He also supervised study of alternate routes for the Panama Canal. He served at SHAPE in Paris during its early years as executive officer of the infrastructure construction program needed to support NATO forces. Other assignments included duty in the Southwest Pacific in World War II, in Vietnam directing military assistance support needed by the South Vietnamese Armed Forces, command of an engineer combat battalion and service in occupied Japan in charge of developing construction materials needed to support U.S. forces there. General Penney held a B.S. degree from West Point, a Master's degree in Civil Engineering from Texas A & M and is a graduate of the Command and General Staff College, the Harvard Advanced Management Program and the National War College. His awards include two each of the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal. He is listed in Who's Who in America. General Penney has been a registered professional engineer in Oklahoma and the District of Columbia and a member of the Association of Civil Engineers and the Society of American Military Engineers. He was a member of the Association of Graduates USMA, the West Point Society of Phoenix, the Association of the U.S. Army and the Retired Officers Association. He is survived by his wife, Mary C. Penney of Peoria, AZ., a daughter, Sharon Penney Harper of Baton Rouge, LA., and a sister, Ruth Bowers of Eugene, OR. A memorial service will be held at 11:00 AM, Monday, June 28, 2004 at the Sierra Winds Chapel, 17300 N. 88th Ave., Peoria, AZ 85382. Contributions may be made to the Sierra Winds Charitable Foundation at the same address. Interment, with full military honors will be held at Arlington National Cemetery. Arrangements entrusted to Advantage Golden Door Chapel, Youngtown, AZ.
Published in The Arizona Republic on June 27, 2004
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