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Alumni inducted into Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame

The Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame recently honored two UNG alumni and the father of a third. Pictured above are: seated, Mrs. Mary Mixon; standing, from left, retired Col. Ben Malcom ('50), retired Maj. Gen. Jack C. Wheeler ('61), retired Lt. Gen. Randy Mixon ('75), retired Col. Tom Palmer ('73) and retired Maj. Gen. James E. Livingston.

Two University of North Georgia (UNG) alumni were inducted into the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame in Columbus, Georgia, on Nov. 1.

Retired Army Col. Ben Studdard Malcom, ('50) and Retired Marine Maj. Gen. James Everette Livingston, a member of the university's Corps of Cadets from 1957-58 and Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, were inducted in the valor category.

Malcom spent 29 years in the U.S. Army and is credited with establishing the foundation for today's U.S. Army Special Forces. As a first lieutenant during the Korean War, Malcom led a unit of some 800 North Korean defectors calling themselves the White Tigers in numerous missions designed to disrupt enemy operations. Paengnyong-do, a small island located off the west coast of North Korea, was home base for Malcom to plan and lead numerous daring and dangerous raids.

The missions were kept secret for 40 years, until Malcom and Ron Martz, who teaches history at UNG, started working on a book chronicling Malcom’s experiences, "White Tigers, My Secret War in North Korea." The book has been translated into Korean, and The History Channel, Voice of America and a South Korean television station have produced broadcasts about Malcom and the White Tigers.

Malcom also fought in Vietnam as a field grade infantry officer. His combat awards include Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star Medal and the Silver Star.

Livingston was recognized for his actions during combat on May 2, 1968, in Vietnam while leading Marines in taking a heavily fortified enemy position. Injured three times and rendered unable to walk, he refused treatment for his wounds and continued to lead his men, including coming to the aid of a nearby company. In addition to the Medal of Honor, his combat awards are: Combat Action Ribbon, three Purple Hearts, Bronze Star Medal, and Silver Star.

Also inducted into the hall was the late Army Command Sgt. Maj. William Tracey Mixon, father of retired Lt. Gen. Randy Mixon, ('75). Mixon was recognized for extraordinary achievement; Mrs. Mary Mixon and Lt. Gen. Mixon accepted the award. Sgt. Maj. Mixon, who fought in both the Korean and Vietnam wars, remained on airborne jump status for 31-plus years with more than 1,500 jumps, including a combat jump in Vietnam. He held every infantry enlisted leadership position in the field Army. His combat awards include Combat Infantry Badge (with star), Master Jump Wings (with combat star), Air Medal, and the Bronze Star Medal.

Malcom and Livingston join two other alumni who were among the inaugural inductees in 2013. Retired Brig. Gen. David Grange ('70) and the late Col. Ben Purcell ('50) were inducted in the valor category.

Thirteen other Georgia veterans were inducted on Nov. 1, including nine for valor in combat and four for service. The Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame is a nonprofit organization that aims to recognize the sacrifice of Georgia's more than 770,000 military veterans and their families.

The Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame board will soon be seeking nominations for the class of 2015.  For information regarding the nomination process, please visit

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