Tuesday, July 17, 2012

SFC Wayne Lee McMillan, United States Army, Ret.

Wayne McMillan was born December 8, 1959 at Corning, New York and passed away June 10, 2012 at Killeen, Texas at the age of 52, after a long battle with cancer.

Wayne proudly served his country in the United States Army for 21 years and retired with the rank of Sergeant First Class.  Wayne loved playing poker, throwing darts, spending time with his family and watching his favorite team, the Dallas Cowboys.

On June 14 the Patriot Guard Riders assembled at the Crawford-Bowers Funeral Home in Killeen and escorted the funeral procession the short distance to the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery, just south of Killeen.  The procession was met there by fifty American flags blowing in the southerly wind.

The United States Army Honor Guard slowly moved the flag draped casket to the committal shelter, after which the Riders formed a line of American flags around the shelter during the graveside service and military honors.

Captain Hoose, an Army Chaplain, led the gathering in the Lord's Prayer, read 23 Psalm and concluded with:

May The Lord Bless You

  May the Lord bless you and keep you.
May the Lord make his face to shine upon you,
and be gracious to you.
May the Lord lift up his countenance upon you,
and give you peace.

(a Judeo-Christian blessing)

Several of Wayne's family and friends, who called him "Big Mac", then told the gathering of their favorite memories of Big Mac.

The Army Honor Guard then afforded to SFC McMillan full military honors.  The detail of five rifles fired three volleys of fire, representing Duty, Honor and Country.  Two buglers played taps.

The flag that draped the casket was folded into the traditional triangle and passed to an Army Non-Commissioned Officer, who presented it to Donna, Wayne's dear wife, on behalf of a grateful nation and the United States Army as a token of appreciation for Wayne's honorable and faithful service.

SFC Wayne McMillan was then laid to rest on the grassy plain of the cemetery, as the American flag at the top of the hill flew at half-staff in his honor.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, five sons, his daughter (a member of the United States Air Force), three grandchildren, his mother, four brothers, five sisters and a host of other dear family and friends.

Creation's Flight
With every changing season
The sky has seemed to say
Lift your thoughts toward heaven
Come and fly away

Through life there is a beckon
Toward a final flight
The seasons are preparing
A change from faith to sight 

And then one day it can be heard
Seems nature hears it too
The time has come to journey
To a place prepared for you

Rising toward the cloudless day
On gentle winds to glide
Toward that final season
Where eternity abides

by Sherrie Bradley Neal

With thanks to Crawford-Bowers Funeral Home for biographical information and photo.


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