Rank Insignia Previous Honoree ID Next Honoree ID

honoree image
First Name: Carl

Last Name: Stiner

Birthplace: LaFollette, TN, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Middle Name: Wade

Date of Birth: 07 September 1936

Rank: General

Years Served: 1958-1993
Carl Wade Stiner

•  Vietnam War (1960 - 1973)
•  Operation Just Cause - Panama (1989 - 1990)
•  Gulf War (1990 - 1991)


Carl Wade Stiner
General, U.S. Army

Carl Wade Stiner was born on 7 September 1936 in LaFollette, TN. He graduated from Tennessee Polytechnic Institute in 1958 with a Bachelor of Science degree. As a member of the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) at TPI, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Infantry of the U.S. Army upon graduation. He served initially with the 9th Infantry Regiment at Fort Benning, GA, and commanded a basic training company at Fort Jackson, SC.

His first special operations tour of duty was in 1964-66 with the 3rd Special Forces Group at Fort Bragg, NC. Following graduation from the Army Command and General Staff College in 1967, he served in the Vietnam War as both an Infantry Battalion and Brigade Operations Officer (S-3) with the 4th Infantry Division.

In 1970, after a tour with Headquarters, Department of the Army in Washington, DC, he joined the 82nd Airborne Division where he commanded the 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, and served as the Division Operations Officer (G3). Following graduation from the Army War College in 1975 and a tour in Saudi Arabia, he commanded the 1st Infantry Training Brigade at Fort Benning.

Promoted to Brigadier General in 1980, he served first as the Chief of Staff, Rapid Deployment Joint Task Force (RDJTF), then headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base, FL, and later as the Assistant Division Commander of the 82d Airborne Division. After serving on the Joint Staff in Washington as Assistant Deputy Director for Politico-Military Affairs, in 1984 he was promoted to Major General and appointed as Commanding General of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) at Fort Bragg.

He held this post until assigned as Commanding General, 82nd Airborne Division, in January 1987. In October 1988 he was named Commanding General of XVIII Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg. As Commanding General, XVIII Airborne Corps, he was designated Commander, Joint Task Force South, and served as the Operational Commander of all forces employed on Operation Just Cause in Panama in December 1989.

In May 1990, Stiner was promoted to General and became the second Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base. As CINC, he was responsible for the readiness of all special operations forces of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, both active duty and reserve.

Stiner has an extensive background in special operations. During his thirty-five year career, Stiner commanded the Army's preeminent contingency strike forces: the Joint Special Operations Command, the 82d Airborne Division, and the XVIII Airborne Corps. Among the many missions in which he was involved was the capture of the terrorists in the hijacking of the ship Achille Lauro; the Panama invasion and the capture of Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega (Operation Just Cause); and all special operations activities during Operation Desert Storm.

General Stiner retired from active service in May 1993.

Medals, Awards, Badges & Tabs

Defense Distinguished Service Medal with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal
Legion of Merit with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster
Purple Heart
Meritorious Service Medal with 2 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters
Air Medal with Award Numeral 16
Army Commendation Medal with 2 Silver Oak Leaf Clusters
National Defense Service Medal
Armed Force Expeditionary Medal
Vietnam Service Medal with 4 Bronze Stars
Army Service Ribbon
Army Overseas Service Ribbon
Vietnam Campaign Medal
Presidential Unit Citation
Joint Meritorious Unit Award
Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation
Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation
Vietnam Civil Actions Medal
Combat Infantryman Badge
Master Parachutist Badge
Office of Joint Chiefs of Staff Identification Badge
Army Staff Identification Badge
Ranger Tab


• Stiner was inducted into the Ranger Hall of Fame in 2004.

• He is a recipient of the Freedom Foundation Award and the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Tennessee Technological University.

• The Army ROTC offices at Stiner's alma mater, Tennessee Tech, have been renamed the Carl W. Stiner Leadership Center in his honor.

• An approximately 10-mile stretch of State Highway 63 between LaFollette and Speedwell, TN, is named in honor of General Stiner.

In Retirement

General Stiner co-authored the 2002 book Shadow Warriors: Inside the Special Forces with Tom Clancy. He serves as Chairman of the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. Stiner has also been active teaching the Joint War Fighting Course at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, VA, and works as a senior advisor for new joint war fighting experiments.

Honoree ID: 336   Created by: MHOH




Honoree Photos

honoree imagehonoree imagehonoree image

honoree imagehonoree image

honoree image