Retired Lieutenant General (LTGEN) Hal Moore passed away on Friday 10th February 2017 just shy of his 95th birthday. The Cove considers it an honour to share the leadership lessons of a true professional. Read Hal Moore's leadership lessons via American Profile.
Moore was renowned for his actions during the Battle of Ia Drang, Vietnam where he was a LTCOL in command of the 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment. The battle was made famous by the book, We Were Soldiers Once... and Young, which was later made into the 2002 Hollywood film starring Mel Gibson.
On 14 November 1965, Moore arrived at Landing Zone (LZ) X-Ray in the Ia Drang Valley with 400 soldiers. While waiting for reinforcements, he and his men came under attack by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) with a force of approximately 1600 soldiers, which rapidly grew into thousands more. He made the tactical decision to defend the LZ at all costs by sending troops across the open field, a move which defied instinct to defend a fortified position. His troops held their ground for as long as possible but were eventually overrun.
Realising he had no other option, Moore called in an airstrike which inflicted heavy enemy casualties and helped balance the fight. In three days of heavy fighting, his own men never let up and continued a fierce resistance until the NVA finally withdrew.
He once said to his men during lead-up training at Fort Benning, "I promise you when we go into combat I will be the first man on the ground and the last man out, and I will leave no man behind". Moore was true to his word, earning the respect of his superiors and subordinates.
LTGEN Moore spent a lifetime studying and encouraging strong leadership principles on the battlefield and as a human being.