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Air Force


1983 - 2009




Randolph W. McHone was an IMA (Individual Mobilization Augmentee) who joined the United States Air Force Reserves in December of 1983. Randy’s third great-grandfather, Millington McHone fought alongside his son, Asa, with the Iowa 28th Infantry in the Civil War. His Father, Wayne, served in WWII with the Big Red One infantry.
With such strong military ties engrained in his family, it was no surprise when Randy decided to serve, choosing the role of chaplain. After graduating from Augustana College in 1970 and Concordia Theological Seminary in 1974, McHone served as pastor of a few churches prior to joining the military and continued serving congregations throughout his military career. As an IMA, he wasn’t locked into the training every weekend and two weeks every summer that most reservists follow. Because he was a parish pastor, his scheduling was up to him, except for when he was assigned to USAF Academy.
Randy’s first ‘tour’ was chaplain school at Maxwell AFB in Alabama. He spent four weeks there learning military protocol, chaplain procedures and survival skills before receiving his first assignment at Whiteman AFB in Knob Noster, Missouri. Whiteman AFB is well known for being the only operational base for the B-2 bomber. For Randy, it was the place he served as the chief chaplain’s assistant, helping provide support to ensure that everyone is physically, emotionally and spiritually fit for duty.
His second assignment was to the United States Air Force Academy in the foothills of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains where he devoted himself to teaching cadets the air force core values: Integrity First, Service Before Self and Excellence in All We Do. Teaching is what Randy enjoyed best and where he felt most called to serve. He always looked forward to the arrival of the doolies (freshman) every July and the five week basic training all the incoming cadets would participate in, not because it was fun to observe but because he got to participate in it! As the cadets prepared for BEAST week (Basic Expeditionary Airman Skills Training), the chaplains would bivouac alongside them, receiving their own training while offering support to the cadets. It was a tough five weeks, but Randy truly loved it and thoroughly enjoyed his two tours at the Academy.
Alternating his tours at the Academy, he served as chief chaplain at Scott AFB and worked to provide faith opportunities, confidentiality and personal guidance to Airmen and their families.
After 26 ½ years in the United States Air Force, Randy proudly retired as a full Colonel from Scott AFB in Illinois. In special recognition of distinguished and faithful service, he was awarded the Martin of Tours Medal from the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod for 20 years of service as a military chaplain.

These submissions were provided by the Veteran, their family and/or friends and are based on their research and memories. The historical facts and recollections are derived from the submitter and not necessarily from the SGA owner or staff. SGA cannot guarantee the accuracy of the submissions.

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