Dickie H McCleney

January 16, 1943February 6, 2021

LTC (Ret) Dickie Howard McCleney, age 78, passed away peacefully February 6, 2021 due to his illness with bone marrow cancer. Just like he dealt with all experiences in life, Dickie managed his illness with strength and grace from his strong faith in Jesus Christ. He wanted to spend as much time with his loved ones as possible. On his final day, he was at home with family. His date of death, was one day after his 55th Wedding Anniversary. Dickie was known to be a Godly Man, a Wonderful and Selfless Husband, a Great Father, “Pappy” to his grandchildren and kids in the neighborhood. He was a friend to everyone, but his main title was “A Soldier”. He was born January 16, 1943 in Angleton, TX to Thomas Arthur and Johnnie Christine McCleney. He grew up with three siblings and attended school through his graduation from Angleton High School in 1961. He attended Sam Houston State University from 1961 through January 1966 and made it clear that he was on the outside of “the walls” of the Huntsville Prison. While at Sam Houston, Dickie earned his Bachelor of Science degree and was Commissioned a 2nd LT in the US Army, through the ROTC program. He also met the Love of His Life, Sandra Ellison, through a blind date arranged by her brother. They were married on February 5, 1966 and they immediately started their military journey together. Dickie was sent to Fort Knox, KY to attend the Armor Officer Basic Course. He was then sent to Fort Walters, TX to attend the Officers Aviation Course. After the General Aviation course, he transferred to Fort Rucker, AL to complete the Rotary Wing Course. His love was flying military helicopters. After Flight School graduation, he was sent to back to Fort Knox, KY to join the 7/17th Air Cav, which then deployed to Vietnam. He fought for our country from September 1967 through January 1968, coming home after surviving a fiery helicopter crash. In April 1968, after being cleared for duty, he returned to Fort Rucker, AL to instruct pilots in the Huey and OH6 helicopters. In 1969, he was then sent to Fort Campbell, KY to command a basic training company that upon graduation, earned the “Best Company” Battalion Award. July 1970, Dickie was sent back to Fort Knox, KY to the Armor Officer’s Career Course. After graduation in July 1971, he deployed back to Vietnam with the 101st Airborne Division until March 1972. After Vietnam, in June 1972, Dickie was sent to Fort Hood, TX where he joined the 1st Cav Division as an aviator and worked with the Air Cavalry Combat Brigade Concept, which later became the 6th Cavalry Brigade (Air Combat) Cavalry. June 1975, he was sent to Fort Sam Houston, TX as an IG inspector in the 5th Army IG Office at the Quadrangle. June 1978, sees Dickie and his family make their final military move, returning to Fort Hood, TX. He joined the 2nd Armored Division/6th Cavalry Brigade. Working full time, he attended the Command & General Staff College via correspondence. He completed the course in 1 year, making the Commandant’s List. With his children in high school and not wanting to move again, Dickie sacrificed himself to take a hardship tour in September 1984 to Ft. Humphreys, Korea, serving as the DPCA. He returned to Fort Hood in September 1985 and continued as G5/DPCA until he retired in July 1987. Throughout his military career, he earned the Master Aviator Designation and many awards to include the Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal. Dickie’s life was a living example of this Bible verse, Ephesians 4:32 — “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ”. Dickie is preceded in death by his Parents; Brother-Clark Wayne McCleney; Sister-Shirley McCleney Parten; Grandson-Tyler Easton McCleney; Brother in Law-R.L. Howard (husband of Sister, Kathy). Dickie is survived by his Wife-Sandra Ellison McCleney; Daughter/Son In Law-Donna and Mitch Connell; Son/Daughter In Law- Brett and Tammy McCleney; four grandchildren-Paige & Ace Connell, Jacob & Jett McCleney and one great-granddaughter-Harper Cassidy Connell. A Celebration of His Life will be 11:00 AM Friday, February 19, 2021, at Memorial Baptist Church. Burial will follow at 1:00 pm at the Texas State Veterans Cemetery. Visitation with the family will be the evening before, February 18th, at Crawford Bowers Funeral Home (Killeen) from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Memorial Baptist Church of Killeen or the Hope Pregnancy Center ( )


  • Visitation

    Thursday, February 25, 2021

  • Burial

    Friday, February 26, 2021

  • A Celebration of Life Service at Memorial Baptist Church

    Friday, February 26, 2021


Dickie H McCleney

have a memory or condolence to add?

Marilyn Grable

February 16, 2021

It was great working with you. You always made the time go by fast. Rip

Michael Woods

February 10, 2021


Sorry to hear about your loss may God have comfort on you and your family during this time of sorrow.

God Bless

M Woods

Minerva Trujillo

February 10, 2021

How quickly time passes. How full of life Art and Dickie were in the 6th Cavalry Regiment. Now they’re both in God’s arms.
God bless you as you face this most difficult time.

Tonya Henry

February 8, 2021

McCleney family
My prayers are with you all. No words can take the place of your pain, but I pray you find peace and strength to deal with Mr Dickie's passing. He was very nice. I volunteered on the Greeter committee with him. Always friendly and told me hello by name. He will be missed.