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Homer Pease

The late Major Homer L. Pease was a 1949 and 1950 Science Hill High School graduate.  But before Pease even made it to Science Hill, he decided to join the Marine Corps in 1942, when he was only 13 years old.  A stranger portrayed himself as Pease’s father and appeared with him at the Johnson City recruiting office. Pease completed basic training and airborne paratrooper qualification while in the 101st Airborne.  On the morning of D-Day, June 6, 1944, and for several days after, Pease made several jumps into France until he was wounded.  He received a Purple Heart and then went on to fight in Ardennes Forest, the Battle of the Bulge, and at Berchtesgaden (known as Hitler’s Eagle Nest).  After being wounded again, his true age of 15 was discovered. His rank was reduced from Sergeant to Private and Pease was sent home to Johnson City where he attended high school until he turned 16.  Homer immediately signed back up for another two years, and he made it to Fort Bragg, North Carolina, before being sent back home again. Following his high school graduation in 1949, Pease learned he did not have enough credits and was required to complete them for graduation in 1950.  Pease then joined the Tennessee Army National Guard and attended college at East Tennessee State University and Milligan College. After 12 years in civilian life, Pease again joined the military. In 1965, he volunteered to be a military advisor in Vietnam and completed the U.S. Army Ranger course.  He was killed in action on November 19,1966, at Ba Tri in Kien Hoa Province of South Vietnam while leading a ground combat operation. A local war hero, Pease will be honored by having the Post Office on 530 E. Main Street bear his name.