Tuesday, April 5, 2011

CWO4 Howard Fred Norris, Jr., United States Army Ret.

Howard Norris was born in Tarentum, PA on March 13, 1952 and passed away on March 23, 2011, at the age of 59, in Ann Arbor, MI.

Howard served his country in the United States Army for twenty years, retiring in 1990. He was a Master Pilot and flew Apache helicopters. In the late 1980’s he was recruited to teach actor Tommy Lee Jones how to fly helicopters for his role in the movie “Fire Birds”. Howard’s many military decorations include the Army Commendation Medal.

On April 1, 2011 interment services were held at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery at Killeen, Texas. In attendance were the Patriot Guard Riders and fifty American flags to honor this veteran.

Final prayers were said by Captain Wallace of the United States Army Chaplain Corps. Military honors were rendered by the United States Army Honor Guard. The detail of five rifles fired three volleys of fire, representing Duty, Honor and Country. The Army bugler then played taps, as all present stood and saluted.

The Honor Guard carefully folded the American flag that covered the silver casket into the traditional triangle and passed it to an Army First Lieutenant, who then presented it to Howard’s family on behalf of the President of the United States, the United States Army and a grateful nation, as thanks for his many years of faithful service.

A shadow box containing Howard's medals and insignia was presented to the family, as were framed drawings of the Apache helicopter.

CWO4 Howard Norris, Jr. was then laid to rest on the wind-swept plain of the cemetery as the American flag flew at half-staff, in his honor, on the hill above.

Left to cherish his memory are his son, four daughters, five grand-children, his brother and numerous other dear family and friends.

With thanks to Beck Chapels for biographical information.

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