Menetrey, Louis Charles, GEN

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Last Rank
Last Service Branch
Last Primary MOS
00G4-Army General Officer (G4)
Last MOS Group
General Officer
Primary Unit
1987-1990, 8th Army
Service Years
1953 - 1990



Six Overseas Service Bars

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This Military Service Page was created/owned by the Site Administrator to remember Menetrey, Louis Charles, GEN USA(Ret).
Contact Info
Home Town
Not Specified
Last Address

Date of Passing
Jan 14, 2009
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

Infantry Shoulder Cord Army Staff Identification US Army Retired (Pre-2007) United Nations Command Joint Security Area (Korean)

United Nations Command Military Armistice Commission (US) U.S. Forces korea 1st Cavalry Division 1st Infantry Division

 Unofficial Badges 

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity


To All Who Shall See These Presents Greeting:

This is to Certify that
The President of the United States of America
Takes Pride in Presenting


The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross to Louis C. Menetrey (0-71395), Lieutenant Colonel (Infantry), U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2d Battalion, 28th Infantry, 3d Brigade, 1st Infantry Division. Lieutenant Colonel Menetrey distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 1 April 1968 as a battalion commander during a reconnaissance-in-force mission northwest of Ben Cat. Learning that one man had become separated from the rest of the unit during an encounter between a small security element and the Viet Cong, Colonel Menetrey personally led a platoon into the hazardous area. He and his men located an enemy base camp and received intense fire. Once he had successfully rescued the missing soldier, he brought two additional companies into the battle. Repeatedly exposing himself to the communists' barrage, Colonel Menetrey directed artillery, air strikes and maneuvers of his troops keeping the enemy entrapped and under constant pressure. With complete disregard for his own welfare, he moved to the forefront of the action and led repeated assaults on the enemy strongholds. On one occasion he assisted in moving a wounded tank commander to safety and then directed tank fire from an exposed position, killing several Viet Cong. After being knocked down by a claymore mine, he led a charge which eliminated the enemy troops who had detonated the device. His aggressive and skillful leadership resulted in the severe defeat of the Viet Cong force. Lieutenant Colonel Menetrey's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.
HQ USARV GO 237 23 JAN 69

Other Comments:


General "Lou" Menetrey was born in Hollywood, California on August 19, 1929. In 1953, he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the regular Army and awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from the University of California, Los Angeles. He held a Master of Arts degree in International Relations from Georgetown University and an honorary Doctorate in Political Science from Kyung Hee University, South Korea. His military education includes completion of the Infantry School, United States Army Command and General Staff College, the Armed Forces Staff College and the National War College.

General Menetrey served in a variety of important and progressive command and staff positions during his military career. He began his military career as a member of first the Naval Reserves (1947) and then the Army Reserves (1952). Upon completion of his undergraduate degree, he was commissioned through the Reserve Officers Training program as a Second Lieutenant of Infantry in the United States Army. He entered active service at Fort Benning Georgia in June of 1953 where he completed the basic Infantry course, the Airborne school and the Ranger school. His first duty assignment was in Germany as a platoon leader in the 18th Infantry, 1st Infantry Division.

In 1967-1969 he was assigned to the Republic of Viet Nam where he served as Assistant Chief of Staff, 1st Cavalry Division; Commander, 2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry; and G-3,1st Infantry Division.

After service in Washington, D.C. where he served as Coordinator of Army Studies, in 1972 General Menetrey began a three year tour with the 101st Airborne Division at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky, where he served as Division G-3; Brigade Commander; Commander, Headquarters Command; and Assistant Division Commander.

General Menetrey was next assigned to the 2nd Infantry Division in Korea as Assistant Division Commander. In 1976, he was assigned to Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas as Deputy Commander, Combined Arms Combat Development Activity.

In 1978, he assumed command of the 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized) at Ft. Carson, Colorado. In 1980, he went to Ft. Hood, Texas where he was Commanding General, TRADOC Combined ArmsTest Agency and in 1981, to Washington D.C. where he was Director of Requirements for the Department of the Army. 

Menetrey is promoted to lieutenant general in 1982.

In 1983, after promotion to Lt. General, it was back to Korea as Commanding General, Combined Field Army (ROK/US). Then, in 1985, he assumed command of the 5th United States Army at Ft. Sam Houston, Texas.

From 1987 through 1990, in his last active duty assignment, General Menetrey was the Commander in Chief of all forces in Korea, a Joint, Unified and Combined Command, which included United Nations Command, Combined Forces Command, Commander U.S. Forces and Commander, Eighth United States Army, Korea. His duties as Commanding General, Eighth U.S. Army, made him only the second man in history to have commanded three different U.S. Armies. Eighth Army included the Trans-Korean pipeline and all the military oil shipping terminals and storage areas in Korea.

Among the awards and decorations received by General Menetrey are the Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Distinguished Flying Cross (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Bronze Star Medal with V Device (with two Oak Leaf Clusters), 17 Air Medals, Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Army Distinguished Service Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Legion of Merit (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Army Commendation Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Combat Infantryman Badge, Senior Parachute Badge, Air Assault Badge, Army General Staff Identification Badge and numerous state and foreign awards and decorations.

General Menetrey retired from active military duty in July of 1990 after 43 years of distinguished service to his country. He became a consultant and speaker on military and strategic matters to several large organizations, government and private. In 1991, he became President of Environmental Marketing Options, Inc., a Colorado firm that designed remedial solutions to mandated environmental laws and regulations. In 2000, he moved to Bluewater Bay in Niceville, Florida and resided there until his death on January 14,2009.

General Menetrey is survived by his wife, A. Jane Menetrey; his children: Linda Hammond, Susan (Jon) Riedel, Kathleen (Rick) Bifulco; and Louis R. (Lisa) Menetrey; his brother, Walter Menetrey, ten grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren.

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 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 1st Award
Senior ParachutistAir Assault Badge

 Enlisted/Officer Basic Training
  1949, (Select in Colleges) (ROTC), B
 Unit Assignments
US NavyUS Army Cadet CommandUS Army Reserve Command (USARC)Airborne School
Army Ranger School1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Command and General Staff College (CGSC) Resident Course1st Cavalry Division
2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry 1st Infantry DivisionNational War CollegeDepartment of the Army (DA)
2nd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division101st Airborne Division 2nd Infantry DivisionCombined Arms Center (CAC)
4th Infantry DivisionTRADOC Combined Arms Test Activity (TCATA)United Nations Command (UNC)/Combined Field Army, UNC5th Army (Fifth Army)
United States Forces Korea (USFK)Combined Forces Command, ROKUnited Nations Command (UNC)8th Army
  1947-1952, US Navy/US Navy Reserve
  1949-1953, ROTC University of California Los Angeles (Cadre)
  1952-1953, US Army Reserve Command (USARC)
  1953-1953, Airborne School
  1953-1954, Airborne School
  1954-1954, Army Ranger School
  1955-1958, 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry /HHC
  1963-1964, Command and General Staff College (CGSC) Resident Course
  1966-1967, Armed Forces Staff College (Staff)
  1967-1968, 1st Cavalry Division/HHC
  1968-1969, 2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry
  1969-1969, 1st Infantry Division/G3
  1969-1970, National War College
  1970-1972, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans (DCSOPS)
  1972-1974, 2nd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division
  1974-1975, 101st Airborne Division
  1975-1976, 2nd Infantry Division
  1976-1978, Combined Arms Center (CAC)
  1978-1980, 4th Infantry Division
  1981-1983, TRADOC Combined Arms Test Activity (TCATA)
  1983-1985, United Nations Command (UNC)/Combined Field Army, UNC
  1985-1987, 5th Army (Fifth Army)
  1987-1990, United States Forces Korea (USFK)
  1987-1990, Combined Forces Command, ROK
  1987-1990, United Nations Command (UNC)
  1987-1990, 8th Army
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1967-1968 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase III Campaign (1967-68)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase V Campaign (1968)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Tet Counteroffensive Campaign (1968)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Tet Counteroffensive Campaign (1968)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase IV Campaign (1968)
  1968-1969 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase VI Campaign (1968-69)
  1969-1969 Vietnam War/Tet 69 Counteroffensive Campaign
  1976-1976 Cold War Incident - Hatchet Incident (Korea)
 Colleges Attended 
University of California, Los Angeles
  1949-1953, University of California, Los Angeles
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