Tatum, Paul, LTC

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Last Rank
Lieutenant Colonel
Last Service Branch
Last Primary MOS
1542-Infantry Unit Commander
Last MOS Group
Infantry (Officer)
Primary Unit
1970-1972, 1542, Army Ranger School
Service Years
1947 - 1972


Special Forces

Lieutenant Colonel

Nine Overseas Service Bars

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by MAJ Harvey Tatum to remember Tatum, Paul, LTC.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Not Specified
Last Address
Born in Prattville Al, Left home and joined the Army at 15 yrs old.

Date of Passing
Sep 09, 1996
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
Military Order of the Purple HeartMilitary Officers Association of America (MOAA)N/A
  1980, Military Order of the Purple Heart [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  1980, Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  1985, United States Army Ranger Association, N/A (Member) [Verified] - Chap. Page

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Major Tatum was born in Prattville Alabama in 1932, at 15 he left home and joined the US Army.  There was little or no background checks at that time and the recruiters signed anyone who appeared of age.  After completing basic training he was assigned  to Ft Knox Ky as a wheel vehicle mechanic.   In July of 1950 he was ordered to Korea  arriving in country by air in time for the Pusan break out.  Once there, he was immediately reclassified an infantryman.  When the call for volunteers went out to Join the 8213th Ranger Co (8th Army Ranger Co) under the cmd of Lt Ralph Puckett he and another man in his PLT volunteered and were accepted.   When the Company was disbanded in the spring of 1951 he was assigned to K co 27th INF (wolfhounds) 25th INF Division.   He was wounded a second time and sent home in 1952.  After being released from the hospital, he was sent to Camp Polk, Lousiana where he was the 1st SGT of an Artillery Battery.   Not wanting to stay at Camp Polk, he took leave and reported to Ft Benning.  In order not to return to CP Polk he volunteer for ranger school.  His class TAC was Cpt "Bull" Simons, it was also the 1st class to be awarded the Black and Gold ranger tab.  He attended the 11th Abn Div jump school at Fort Campbell Ky.  Our family "Gyro" to Cp Chickamauga Japan with the 508th RCT, after a year we returned to the States due to a health problem concerning a family member.  He was again, assigned to Fort Campbell and remained there until he attended OCS and graduated as the Distinguished graduate of his class.  Upon receiving his commission, he was posted to Fort Jackson, SC where he served as a Company Commander.  In 1961 he was assigned to Ft Wainwright Alaska and served there for 3 years, 2 years as the Commander Of B co 47th INF.  In 1964 he was assigned to the 3rd Army recruiting CMD, first in Knoxville TN, then later Nashville.   He volunteered for Vietnam and received orders to the 5th SF GRP, on arrival in country he was reassigned to the 1st INF Div, 1/16th INF as a Company CDR, on his promotion to Major he was made the BN's S3.  When his tour was completed he was posted to Ft Benning as the XO of the 4th STU BN (ABN), the Airborne School.  He then attended the Special Operation Course, his room mate was MG, then, Major Mike Speigelmyers, later of the JFK Center.  After completion of the school he was again sent to VN, this time as the Senior District Advisor for Tay Ninh Province.  In Aug 1970 he was assigned to the Ranger DPT as the School's OPN OFF and retired out of the DPT in Jul 1972.

He spent the next 23 years as a teacher, medically retiring in 1995 after being diagnosed with leukemia.   He received his Masters in Education from Troy State in 1990 and was working towards his Doctorate in Education when he succumbed to the disease and passed away in 1996.
Other Comments:
Not Specified

 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 2nd Award
Master ParachutistPathfinder Badge
Vietnam - Jump Wings

 Enlisted/Officer Basic Training
  1947, 9th Battalion, 2nd Training Brigade (Fort Jackson, SC), A
 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
5th Special Forces Group (Airborne)25th Infantry Division (Tropic Lightning)2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry 11th Airborne Division
1st Battalion, 508th Airborne Battalion Combat Team101st Airborne Division Infantry Center and School (Staff) Fort Benning, GAUS Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC)
US Army Alaska (USARAK), US Army Pacific (USARPAC)4th Infantry DivisionUS Army Recruiting Command (USAREC)1st Infantry Division
Military Assistance Command Vietnam MACVUS Army Vietnam (USARV)Army Ranger School
  1947-1947, Group Support Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group
  1950-1952, 25th Infantry Division (Tropic Lightning)
  1951-1952, HHC, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry
  1953-1955, 11th Airborne Division
  1955-1956, 1st Battalion, 508th Airborne Battalion Combat Team
  1957-1959, 101st Airborne Division
  1959-1960, Infantry Center and School (Staff) Fort Benning, GA
  1960-1961, 1542, HQ, US Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC)
  1961-1964, 1542, US Army Alaska (USARAK), US Army Pacific (USARPAC)
  1962-1964, 1542, 4th Infantry Division
  1964-1966, US Army Recruiting Command (USAREC)
  1966-1967, 1542, 1st Infantry Division
  1969-1970, 1542, HHC, Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV), Military Assistance Command Vietnam MACV
  1969-1970, US Army Vietnam (USARV)
  1970-1972, 1542, Army Ranger School
 Colleges Attended 
Troy State University
  1989-1990, Troy State University
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