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Military Science-ROTC to induct four
Silver Star recipients into Hall of Heroes

November 1, 2009 -- Four recipients of the Silver Star will be inducted into the Hall of Heroes by the Arkansas State University Department of Military Science-ROTC and recognized during halftime of the ASU-Louisiana-Lafayette football game Saturday, Nov. 7, at ASU Stadium. The game begins at 2:30 p.m.

The four include Arthur B. Cook, Jr., class of 1970; Paul E. Jackson (Lt. Col. Retired), class of 1955; Larry A. Poole, class of 1960; and James L. Schimming (Lt. Col. Retired), class of 1959. All four inductees received Silver Stars for their combat services in Vietnam.  Their plaques will be hung in the ROTC Hall of Heroes, located in the National Guard Armory parking lot entrance, which is open from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday.

The Hall of Heroes annually honors ROTC alumni who have distinguished themselves through valor and service.  
The Silver Star is the third highest military decoration that can be awarded to a member of the United States Armed Forces and is awarded for gallantry in action against an enemy of the United States.

Cook is from Caruthersville, Mo.  He graduated from Arkansas State in 1970 with a bachelor of science degree in Business Administration and a ROTC commission as a second lieutenant in the United States Army.  His period of service lasted from 1970 to 1973.  During that time, he completed Army Helicopter Aviation School and served a tour in Vietnam from 1971 to 1972.  Lieutenant Cook’s awards and honors include the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, and Army Aviation Badge.  He received an honorable discharge from the Army in 1973.  He is presently a right-of-way supervisor for Doyle Land Services, Inc. on a gas transport line.

On April 28, 1972, First Lieutenant Cook distinguished himself while serving as pilot of a rescue helicopter with the 358th Aviation Detachment, 525th Military Intelligence Group.  Lieutenant Cook accepted a rescue mission to extract American advisors from Quang Tri City.  During the mission, he flew over enemy-held territory occupied by a regimental-sized North Vietnamese Army force equipped with anti-aircraft weapons.

As he maneuvered to recover the Americans, his aircraft became the target of intense hostile fire, and Lieutenant Cook repeatedly placed accurate fire on the enemy.  Cook completed the extraction of six Americans and three Vietnamese civilians from Quang Tri City.

Schimming was born in Peach Orchard, Ark.  He received a bachelor of science degree in agriculture from Arkansas State in 1959 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant of Infantry through ROTC.  After entering the U.S. Army in May 1960, Schimming served as a platoon leader and company commander, including command of an infantry company during combat in Vietnam, and staff officer positions at various levels.

Lieutenant Colonel Schimming’s overseas assignments included a tour in Germany during construction of the Berlin Wall, the Panama Canal Zone, and two combat tours in Vietnam.  Stateside assignments included Fort Benning, Ga., Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., the Presidio of San Francisco, Calif., Fort Sheridan, Ill., and Fort Meade, Md.  At the University of Chattanooga-Tennessee, he served as an assistant professor of Military Science.  Schimming retired from the U.S. Army in 1981 and began a new career in commercial property management in the Washington, D.C.-Baltimore, Md. area.  He retired again in 1993 from his position as a group manager and vice president for the Rouse Company, a real estate developer with properties nationwide.  A few of his awards and honors include the Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Air Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, and Combat Infantryman Badge.

On April 1, 1967, Captain Schimming was serving as an S-4, 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Division, during Operation Junction City, when his unit became engaged in one of the most decisive battles of the Vietnam conflict.  Occupying a defensive position in War Zone C, Captain Schimming was instrumental in halting and repelling the attack of an outnumbering Viet Cong force.  After firing over 300 mortar rounds, the Viet Cong 271st Regiment launched a massive ground attack at Company C, allowing insurgents to infiltrate the position.

Company C fought back, and Captain Schimming charged through intense small arms, automatic weapons and mortar fire to halt the Viet Cong before they could reach the battalion’s command post.  His assault rallied his unit and initiated a counterattack to drive the enemy from the perimeter and blocking the Viet Cong escape routes. 

Jackson, from Elevenpoint, Ark., graduated from Arkansas State in 1955 with a bachelor of science degree in animal husbandry and commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army.  By the time he retired as a lieutenant colonel in 1975, he had completed over six years of overseas duty, including tours to Vietnam, Germany, and Korea.  After retiring from the military, he flew as a helicopter instructor pilot at Fort Rucker, Ala. for 10 years.  Lieutenant Colonel Jackson also acquired an MBA from Troy State University, and attended the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kan.  During his career, he received numerous awards and decorations, including two Bronze Star Medals, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry.  For gallantry in combat, he was awarded the Silver Star.  Lieutenant Colonel Jackson now lives in Panama City, Fla., and enjoys deep sea fishing.

On May 12, 1968, while commanding the 176th Assault Helicopter Company, 14th Combat Aviation Battalion in support of America Division, he led his aircraft on an ammunition resupply mission to a Special Forces camp under heavy attack.  Leading his helicopter into exploding mortar rounds and machine gun fire, then-Major Jackson landed his aircraft to deliver the ammunition and carry out the wounded.  His action resulted in the camp being able to continue its defense and the eventual evacuation of over 1,700 American and allied troops.

Poole is from Kennett, Mo., and received a bachelor of science degree in business administration/accounting from ASU in 1966. Poole also played baseball for Arkansas State. He was drafted into the U.S. Army, and in March of 1967, he received a commission as a second lieutenant and began serving as a Central Accounting Officer at Fort Campbell, Ky.  He deployed to South Vietnam in October 1967, where he joined the 2nd Battalion, 39th Infantry, 9th Infantry Division as a platoon leader in C Company.  That group helped defend Saigon during the 1968 Tet Offensive, after which he was promoted to first lieutenant.  Through his many engagements with the enemy, he never lost a soldier.  In October 1968, his last assignment was at Fort Polk, La., where he served as the executive officer of an Advanced Infantry Training Company.  He was honorably discharged in May 1969. 

Since 1981, he has worked for Petrolog International, Inc., a service company in the oil and gas industry.  Lieutenant Poole’s awards and honors include the Silver Star, Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge, Vietnam Service Medal, and Vietnam Unit Award.

On August 27, 1968, First Lieutenant Poole distinguished himself while serving as a Platoon Leader with Co. C, 2nd Battalion, 39th Infantry, on a reconnaissance in force mission in Long An Province, Republic of Vietnam.  After a breakdown in radio communications during an enemy engagement, Lieutenant Poole crawled more than 50 meters across a fire-swept rice paddy to establish contact with his commanding officer. 

The Hall of Heroes, with full biographies and photos of the inductees, is located at the east entrance to the ASU Armory. All funding is provided by private donation. A complete listing of the inductees into the ROTC hall of Heroes can be found at the website For more information, contact the ASU Department of Military Science and Leadership at (870) 972-2064.

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