Murphy Funeral Homes
Milton Alfred Pilcher
November 13, 1916 – April 16, 2017
Major General Milton A. Pilcher, USA (Ret), of McLean, VA, passed
away on April 16, 2017, at the age of 100.
Milton Pilcher was born in Washington, DC, November 13, 1916.
He attended McKinley High School (1934) in Washington and
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) in
Blacksburg, VA, graduating with a BS in electrical engineering in 1938. Mr. Pilcher did
graduate studies in public administration at the American University in Washington in 1946 and
1947. He graduated from the Command and General Staff College in 1965 and completed
courses at the Army War College and National Defense University.
Mr. Pilcher was employed by the Kentucky Power Company and then the Rural Electrification
Administration (REA) from 1938 to 1942 and again from 1946 to 1949 after military service in
World War II.
He was in the Executive Office of the President of the United States for 11 years from 1949 to
1960 as a Principal Examiner in the Bureau of the Budget. There he was responsible for the
budget and programs of the Panama Canal, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and all
electrical power programs of the Federal Government, including Corps of Engineers and
Department of the Interior programs, and related defense planning. He was Director of
Administration of the former Federal Power Commission from 1960 to 1965, a division chief in
the Bureau of Outdoor Recreation from 1965 to 1968, and Budget Director of the National Park
Service from 1968 to 1971, when he retired.
Mr. Pilcher was commissioned from Virginia Tech ROTC into the Army Corps of Engineers in
1938. He was on active duty from 1942 to 1946, serving as an assistant signal officer in the
Second Air Force in Spokane, Washington and Colorado and as the communications
officer with Merrill’s Marauders and MARS Task Force for 18 months in long range penetration
combat operations in India, Burma and China. From there, he served as assistant signal officer
with the Second Army in Tennessee and in the Office of the Chief Signal Officer in the
Pentagon until leaving active duty in 1946. He served as a US Army Reserve School Director
and then as a member and later commander of the 352nd Civil Affairs Command located at
Georgetown University from 1946 to 1968. He was promoted to Brigadier General in 1966. He
was appointed Deputy Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for Military Operations, Department of
the Army, and promoted to Major General in 1968. General Pilcher was appointed commander
of the 310th Field Army Support Command, Washington, DC, in 1972 and served until
retirement in 1974.
General Pilcher was a former Chapter President and National President of the Civil Affairs
Association and a former President of the Department of the District of Columbia (General
Pilcher Chapter) of the Reserve Officers Association. He was a Past Commander of the
American Legion’s District of Columbia Department and a member of the Legion’s National
Security Commission. He had been a member of the National Advisory Board of Directors of
the Association of the United States Army (AUSA). His decorations include the Legion of Merit,
a Bronze Star, the American Theater Campaign medal, Asia Pacific medal, Armed Forces
Reserve medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Army Staff badge, and recognition as a
Distinguished Member of the US Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment and the Civil Affairs Corps
Regiment. He received the AUSA award for distinguished service in 1995 and more recently
the American Legion Merit medal. Beforehis death, he is believed to have been the oldest living
member of Merrill’s Marauders and the oldest living Ranger. Milton was a long-time member of
Walker Chapel United Methodist Church in Arlington, VA, and served as Lay Leader and as
chairman of the Board of Trustees, among other duties.
He was the devoted husband of the former Elizabeth Haywood of Louisa, KY, for 58 years from
1940 until her death in 1998. Milton Pilcher’s life was one of leadership and love through
service to God, his family, his country, his church, and his many neighbors and friends. He was
a leader in organizations that have informed and helped to shape America’s foreign and
military policy, including helping to found and champion the modern concepts of Civil Affairs, so
vital a part of “winning the peace” and reducing the need for prolonged military occupation. He
left each of the government agencies in which he served a better place itself and for us as
consumers of government services.
Milton viewed his family and friends as a hope for a bright future for America, this great,
exceptional country for which he and so many others fought so many years ago. His integrity,
strength of character, and willingness to help family members and associates will stand as
inspiration to those who knew him, and we will benefit from his long life for generations to come.
Survivors include a brother, Barton Pilcher, of Sanford, FL; son and daughter-in-law Walter H.
Pilcher and Carol B. Pilcher of Greensboro, NC; daughter and son-in-law Ann P. McKenzie and
James McKenzie of Bahama, NC; grandchildren Todd Pilcher of Silver Spring, MD, Carolyn
McAllister of Hickory, NC, Jennifer Schneier of Greensboro, NC, Ryan McKenzie and Erin
McKenzie, both of Wilmington, NC; and great grandchildren Ethan Schneier, Justin Schneier,
Aislinn McKenzie, Alex McAllister, Michael McAllister, Zain Pilcher and Aziza Pilcher.
Final arrangements include a visitation at Murphy Funeral Home and a funeral at Walker Chapel
Church, both in Arlington, after which General Pilcher will be buried alongside his wife at
Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.
The family requests that if anyone wishes to donate a memorial it be made in General Pilcher’s
name to Walker Chapel United Methodist Church.IN THE CARE OF Murphy Funeral Homes
Arlington, VA 703-920-4800