Benjamin Washington Mills Jr., SP 6-E6, U.S. Army, Ret. August 3, 1935 - August 1, 2018
Benjamin Washington Mills, Jr. was born of parents, Lillian and Benjamin Washington Mills, Sr. at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland, August 3, 1935. Mr. Mills, Sr. was the owner of apartment buildings on the east side of Baltimore, Mrs. Mills was an ordained Evangelist in the Holiness Church, presiding over her own storefront church, focusing her service on the needs of the underprivileged. They cherished this son, born to them late in life.
Benjamin, Jr. joined the Air Force, after attending public schools in Baltimore. After basic training at Lackland AFB, San Antonio, He was assigned to Thule, Greenland. At the end of that tour of duty, he was transferred to Little Rock AFB, of the SAC Command, where he met his future wife, Peggye LaRue Williams. In 1957 he received orders to be transferred to Incirlik AFB, Adana, Turkey. Prior to deploying, he and Peggye were married at Howard University, February 26, 1957. She joined him in Turkey, where two children, Lynita LaRue Mills and Benjamin Washington Mills, III, were born to the young couple. The next duty station, Reese AFB, Lubbock, Texas was the birth place of their third child, Julius Raymond Mills.
After eight years of Air Force Service, Ben was employed as an Practical Nurse, at the VA Hospital in Baltimore for a year.
He reenlisted for military service, but this time into the U.S. Army, going through Basic Training, again. Following Basic, the family was on the move again. While waiting for the next move, the fourth child, Erica Eugene Mills was born in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Then, Ben was assigned to an underground missile site in Gary, Indiana, the family was quartered in Harvey, Illinois and Phoenix, Illinois, during that tour.
The next move was to Ansbach, Germany, where the family resided from 1963 to 1966, and where Ronald Stephan Mills and Jeffrey Alexander Mills were born.
Following the tour in Europe, Ben was assigned to Ft. Sam Houston, Texas, arriving in October 1966 to enroll in 91C school, where he would become a Licensed Vocational Nurse, preparing to fulfill his calling, as a Combat Medic. Under that MOS, he served three tours of duty in Vietnam.
His final assignment before retirement was Ft. Bliss, El Paso, Texas, where he retired with 20 years of military service to his credit, June 1974. His service awards and medals reflect his service in both the U.S. Air Force and the United States Army.
Ben was passionate about “current events.” After retirement, living in San Antonio, he was often seen having his morning coffee at local Coffee Shops, while devouring several print publications from major news sources. He also had a fondness for electronic gadgets and kept up with every iteration of modern day communications devices. Those who knew him during his early adult years, marveled at the singing quality of his beautiful tenor voice. His favorite song, “Oh What a Night,” by the Dells. 1
Ben Mills leaves to grieve his passing, his wife, who he remarried on July 23, 2018 at the Armed Forces Retirement Home, Washington, D.C., Peggye Williams Mills, his five living children, Lynita LaRue Mills, San Antonio, Texas; Benjamin Washington Mills, III, Walnut Creek, California; Julius Raymond Mills (Gail), San Rafael, California; Erica Eugene Mills Chastang (Samuel), San Antonio, Texas; Ronald Stephan Mills, San Antonio, Texas. The youngest child, Jeffrey Alexander Mills proceeded his father in death.
The family has been blessed by the births of seven grandchildren, who were much loved by their grandfather, Justin, Brandon, and Tiffany Mills of Lubbock, Texas; and Ronnie, Johnny, Taylor and Whitney Mills of San Antonio, Texas.