CSM Basil Plumley, “Old Iron Jaw”, Loses Battle With Cancer At 92


It is with a heavy heart that we report that CSM Basil Plumley passed away at 0400hrs this morning, 10 OCT 2012, after being diagnosed with Colon Cancer and moved to a Hospice a little over a week ago. CSM Plumley lost his first battle on this day, but i am sure he is now whipping Heaven in to shape, as his Soldiers meet him at the gates in formation.

CSM Plumley was the epitome of a Soldier and a Warrior. RIP CSM, you have done your time in Hell, now it is time for you to rest. Thanks to you for all you have done for this country and our freedom. Words can never express the gratitude we have for you and the selfless service you have given to this great country.


The soldier stood and faced his God, Which must always come to pass; He hoped his shoes were shining bright, Just as brightly as his brass.

“Step forward now, soldier, How shall I deal with you? Have you turned the other cheek? To my church have you been true?”

The soldier squared his shoulders and said, “No, Lord, I guess I ain’t; Because those of us who carry guns, Can’t always be a saint.

I’ve had to work most Sundays, And at times my talk was rough; I’ve had to break your rules my Lord, Because the world is awfully tough.

But, I never took a thing That wasn’t mine to keep; Though I worked a lot of overtime, When the bills got just too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help, Though at times I shook with fear; And sometimes … God forgive me, I’ve wept unmanly tears.

I know I don’t deserve a place Among the people here; They never wanted me around, Except to calm their fears.

If you’ve a place for me here, Lord, It needn’t be so grand; I never expected or had too much, But if you don’t, I’ll understand.”

There was a silence all around the throne, Where the saints often trod; As the soldier waited quietly, For the judgment of his God.

“Step forward now, soldier, You’ve borne your burdens well; Come walk peacefully on Heaven’s streets, You’ve done your time in HELL!”

Please see our other post on CSM Plumley for a complete history of his achievements. CSM Plumley Diagnosed With Terminal Cancer And Moved To Hospice.


These are the funeral arrangements for CSM Plumley, thanks to Mr. Galloway for the info.

Monday October 15:
10am to 8pm Visitation at Striffler Hamby Funeral Home on Macon Road, Columbus GA.
Tuesday October 16:
1pm funeral services at Old Post Chapel on Fort Benning.

NBC News Anchor Brian Williams did an awesome tribute to CSM Plumley.

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What are your thoughts?
41 comments on “CSM Basil Plumley, “Old Iron Jaw”, Loses Battle With Cancer At 92
  1. Great poem except for one line. That someone thinks it is unmanly to cry in this day and age is really sad. Especially a soldier who sees things most men never even dream of. Men who are tasked to kill other humans. Cry soldier, I for one would be proud to offer you my shoulder.

  2. Cav Troopers go to Fiddler’s Green:
    Halfway down the trail to Hell,
    In a shady meadow green
    Are the Souls of all dead troopers camped,
    Near a good old-time canteen.
    And this eternal resting place
    Is known as Fiddlers’ Green.
    Marching past, straight through to Hell
    The Infantry are seen.
    Accompanied by the Engineers,
    Artillery and Marines,
    For none but the shades of Cavalrymen
    Dismount at Fiddlers’ Green.
    Though some go curving down the trail
    To seek a warmer scene.
    No trooper ever gets to Hell
    Ere he’s emptied his canteen.
    And so rides back to drink again
    With friends at Fiddlers’ Green.
    And so when man and horse go down
    Beneath a saber keen,
    Or in a roaring charge of fierce melee
    You stop a bullet clean,
    And the hostiles come to get your scalp,
    Just empty your canteen,
    And put your pistol to your head
    And go to Fiddlers’ Green.
    See you at Fiddler’s Green Sergeant Major.
    From The Brotherhood of Tankers

    • Our home is divided between the Infantry and the Cavalry. My son SSG Anthony Stangle (19D) taped the “Fiddler’s Green” poem onto our bedroom door just after he graduated from basic training from Ft. Knox in 2004. He did that because he wanted his step-father the ole’ Infantryman to see it everytime he went to sleep at night. We still have it scotched taped on the bedroom door to this day. My husband is retired after 38 years of service and, he particpates with the Patriot Guard here in the Ft. Benning area. I will be praying for CSM Plumley’s family and friends. I will also continue to quietly express my thanks to him for paving the way for my husband, son and daughter who are all soldiers. In addition, I will thank him for guiding all others who knew him and served with him.
      Thank you so much for all you have done for me, and my family CSM Plumley. May you rest in peace with your brothers and sisters awaiting your arrival.

  3. No man is more loved, then by his brothers.
    And no man now’s this more then one that served with brother…. CFM

    CSM your time has come to lay your soul to rest you have no more worries of past or present things. You are free from pay that many of us still feel. You go like any good NONCOM forward first to clear the way. Keep leading CSM for many more will follow you, for this Im sure. RIP CSM Plumley.

  4. Someone with Photoshop skills should correct the photo shown above which shows the top row of this great Soldier and warrior’s medal ” rack”. The top two medals-the Legion of Honor and the Sliver Star with Oak Leaves- have been flipped end-for-end. The Silver Star should be the lead medal. RIP CSM Plumley.

  5. CSM you served your country with HONOR,DIGNITYAND RESPECT, your last battle was not lost to a weapon of steel and lead, your last battle just wasn’t lost you retired to a greater place where you will be greeted by the greatest FORMATION ever, your troopers past present and future will see you there and greet you with the HIGHEST HONORS YOU DESERVE!!!!! R.I.P. MY BROTHER

    SSG Tracy A Workman
    29th ID

  6. Hooah! I wish I could’ve served under CSM Plumley. From what I’ve learned of him he was a soldier’s soldier and would’ve happily handed any service member their ass. This is one man who definitely deserved his nation’s highest honors for his service.

  7. Carry on CSM, we here at the 86SFS will keep this world in check so you can square away the Charlie Foxtrot that may await you at the gates. Just show St. Peter your CAC and PCS orders, and my fallen bretheren will escort you in a parade you deserve.

  8. When I returned from Germany in 83 I was assigned to Martin Army Hospital, CSM Plumley was a Civilian Employee there, I dealt with and worked with him until I retired in 89 he retired in 90. He was as gruff as he was displayed in the movie by Sam Elliot, everyone always knew who was in charge. R.I.P. my friend

  9. CSM Plumley take charge of the formation in Heaven. I do wish, as an 11B, that I could’ve served under you. You have fought the long fight and have won!

  10. At 0401 this morning at the pearly gates I bet the angels and saint Peter heard God yell “Make a hole!” Then “At ease!” as he walked right through. Rest in peace Sergeant Major.

  11. I salute before this man.
    But can we wipe out this imaginary friend stories, like heaven and so on? We are no longer in the mid ages.

  12. I’m sure God arrainged it for him to pass away at 0400. That way the CSM could take charge of the PT formation in Heaven. God Speed CSM.

  13. Today many use the word “Hero” too loosely. But this man was a true Ledged. As a young Soldier I meet him and never forgot the encounter. I wrote a paper on him in one of my professional development classes. Rest in Peace Sergeant Major.

  14. We the United States Army lost a true NCO, CSM Plumley. Who lead from the front and not the rear. He will be missed and always remembered for his true leadership. May god bless and strengthen his entire family. GOD BLESS them all. HOOAH!

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