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Lavon T. McDaniel

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Lavon T. McDaniel Obituary

Lavon Terrence "Terry" McDaniel

87, of Carmel, Indiana passed away February 21, 2013 surrounded by his family. He was born August 26, 1925 in Curtisville, Indiana to Loren T. and Chloe V. (Heflin) McDaniel.

In 1937, the family moved to the family farm near Hobbs, Indiana where Terry attended high school in Windfall, Indiana. In 1943, following graduation, Terry was drafted into the U.S. Army and was assigned for duty and training at Camp Shelby, MS. In April of 1944, he was assigned to the 75th Infantry Division at Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky. He accompanied this Division to Europe where he would participate in armed combat with our known enemy, in the Rhine River crossing, Ardennes campaign (Battle of the Bulge). He was awarded the Combat Infantrymen's Badge for World War II (1944-1945) and a second award for combat in the Korean War, the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart Medal, and Meritorious Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Commendation Medal, and the POW medal. Terry most recently was recognized by the French Consulate as Knight of the Legion of Honor for valorous action during WWII.

Terry was a Command Sergeants-Major in the U.S. Army. He served with Anti-Tank Company, 291st Infantry Regiment, and 75th Infantry Division during World War II, and with the 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division during the Korean War, serving eleven years in overseas assignments. He was wounded and captured during the Korean War, and was a prisoner of war for thirty days and then liberated by the 25th Infantry Division in October 1950 in Namwon, Korea. Terry retired from active duty December 21, 1963. In 1968 he transferred from the Retired Reserves to Active Reserves joining the 451st Field Depot in Indianapolis, Indiana. Here he served as the organization Command Sergeants-Major until 1980.

In addition, Terry worked with the U.S. Army Reserves as a Staff Training Assistant as well as associations with numerous military affiliated organizations such as the American Legion Post 555; the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10003; the Combat Infantrymen's Association; 2nd infantry Division Association; Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge, Chapter 47; Korean War Veterans Association; Military Order of the Purple Heart; and the Ex-Prisoners-of War Association, Central Indiana Chapter.

He is survived by his son, Michael J. (Diane) McDaniel, Carmel; a sister, Sarah Stevens of Tucson, Arizona; a brother, Gary L. (Francie) McDaniel, Crawfordsville; grandchildren, Ryan M. (Karissa) McDaniel, Chicago, IL, Courtney S. (Ross) Harris; Madeline E. and Martha A. Power and great-grandson, Jackson Ross Harris, all of Carmel. Also surviving is his loving companion, Mary Welch. He was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years and the love of his life, Helen (St. Clair) McDaniel; parents, Loren and Chloe McDaniel; brother, Gilbert M. McDaniel and sisters, Eugena Bright, Betty Hicks and Patricia Warner.

A private memorial will be held for the immediate family. Taps will be played at 2200 hours (10:00 p.m.) on the day of the memorial at the Carmel Cemetery flag pole. Friends may make memorial contributions to the Soldiers and Sailors Home in Washington D.C. or the Army Emergency Relief Fund.

Published in the The Indianapolis Star on Mar. 3, 2013
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