Peter G. Dorland

Peter Grant Dorland, Major, United States Army retired, passed away 4 Nov 15.

He was born March 17, 1946 to a career military family. He attended high school at Battle Ground Academy in Franklin, TN where he excelled in academics and wrestling. His undergraduate education was at Amherst College where he majored in biology. He graduated in May 1968, and continued post graduate studies at Vanderbilt University. He joined the Army 22 Feb 69, completed Officer Candidate School 23 Jan 70, and commissioned as a MSC officer. During the AMEDD Officer Basic Course, he applied for and was selected to attend the Officer Rotary Wing Aviation Course. Upon completion of the Basic Course, he transferred to Fort Wolters, TX and was placed in helicopter flight training class 70-50. After completing preflight and primary flight training he was transferred to Fort Rucker, AL for instrument and advanced training graduating in early March 1971. Following six additional weeks of training in the Essential Medical Training for AMEDD Aviators course at Fort Sam Houston, TX, he transferred to the assignment for which he had volunteered in The Republic of South Vietnam.

Peter was assigned to the 326th Medical Battalion, Eagle Dustoff, 101st Airborne Division at Camp Eagle, Vietnam. He served as an evacuation pilot from April 1971 to March 1972. During his tour he accumulated significant combat flight hours, successfully evacuating wounded, injured and ill U.S. soldiers, allied soldiers, and Vietnamese civilians. For his accomplishments he was awarded the Bronze Star, ten Air Medals, The Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, and the Vietnam Campaign and Service Medals.

UUpon completion of his combat tour he was reassigned to the 82nd Medical Detachment (Helicopter Ambulance), 1st Aviation Battalion, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, KS. He continued duty as an evacuation pilot and assumed duties as a flight platoon leader. In 1974, he accepted an assignment with the U.S. Army Center of Military History at Fort Detrick, MD, to author a book specifically about the history of Dustoff beginning with the early development of military aviation medical evacuation through the significant role and accomplishments of aeromedical helicopter operations in Vietnam. He completed his manuscript in March 1977. The book, “DUST OFF: Army Aeromedical Evacuation in Vietnam,” was published 18 Jan 82.

Peter attended the Army Aviation Safety Officer Course followed by the AMEDD Officer Advanced Course in 1977. In early 1978, he was assigned to the 377th Medical Company (Air Ambulance) in the Republic of South Korea where he resumed flying duty as an evacuation pilot and eventually duty as the executive officer. He returned stateside in early 1979 assigned to the 247th Medical Detachment (Helicopter Ambulance) at Fort Meade, Maryland again as an evacuation pilot and as flight operations officer. The 247th Medical Detachment was transferred to Fort Irwin, CA in early October 1980. He accepted the position as Detachment Commander upon completion of that move. In 1983, Peter completed his command and transferred to Fort Gillem, GA assigned to the Third Army Command Assessment of Readiness and Training Office, CART. In that job, he traveled extensively to US Army Reserve and National Guard Component helicopter aviation sites to provide assistance, assessment and expertise.

On 28 Feb 89 Major Peter G. Dorland, Master Army Aviator, retired.

After his Army retirement he started and managed a successful home construction company, which he owned and operated for many years.

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