Let it be known that it is with great respect and admiration that we honor retired Major General Lucius Theus, U.S. Air Force, upon his induction into the Michigan Military and Veterans Hall of Honor. Louis served a distinguished military career, including service during World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War. Indeed, his contribution to his country is a feat to which we all should aspire.
Lucius Theus of Southfield, Michigan was born on Wednesday, October 11, 1922 in Madison County, Tennessee. He graduated from Community High School in Blue Island, Illinois and earned a B.S. degree from the University of Maryland in 1956, with his M.A. degree in business from George Washington University in 1957.
Lucius enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Forces in 1942 as a Private. Theus graduated second in his Officer Candidate School class in January of 1946 and commissioned a second lieutenant. He served as training officer for the Tuskegee Army Airfield, Alabama. Other stateside tours included Keesler Field, Mississippi; Lockbourne Air Force Base, Ohio; Headquarters of the U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C; Larson Air Force Base, Washington, Kingsley Field, Oregon and within the Office of the Comptroller of the Air Force. Lucius served as the director of the Air Force Accounting and Finance Center, Denver, Colorado. Theus attended the Armed Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia in 1960 and graduated with distinction from the Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama in 1966. He served overseas at Erding Air Depot, Germany; Chateauroux Air Base, France; Headquarters Air Materiel Forces Europe and as chief of the Management Services Office in Athens, Greece. Lucius was the base commander at Cam Ranh Bay Air Base, Republic of Vietnam. Theus developed direct deposit for military payrolls and led a task force resulting in DOD race relations education and policies. Major General Theus retired from the Air Force in 1979. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters and Congressional Gold Medal. Lucius assisted in establishing the “Tuskegee Airmen National Historical Museum” at Fort Wayne in Detroit, Michigan. Theus was inducted into the Enlisted Men’s Hall of Fame in 1995, with the “Major General Lucius Theus Auditorium” at Patrick Air Force Base dedicated in 1996. He was enshrined into the Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame on Saturday, October 19, 1996. Lucius was the first African American combat support officer to be promoted to the rank of general officer. Theus died in Southfield, Michigan on Monday, October 15, 2007 at the age of 85.
Indeed, the patriotic contributions of Major General Theus must be recognized, as in all who have served the United States of America in this capacity. The personal sacrifice so selflessly offered by these brave men and women for the preservation of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness must never be forgotten. Lucius Theus embraced the essence of American heroism and should be recognized as a role model by all individuals.
In special tribute, therefore, we honor Major General Theus for his exemplary service to the United States of America, and to commemorate his induction into the Michigan Military and Veterans Hall of Honor.