General Claudius M. Easley

General Claudius M. Easley was born on July 11, 1891. His family moved to Waco when he was very young. He subsequently attended Waco High School, where he graduated in 1911. During his time in high school, he enlisted in the Texas National Guard. He was later commissioned as an officer, with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in the Infantry Branch on July 11, 1912, his 21st birthday.

He later attended the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas and graduated in 1916 with a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering Degree. With graduation from college, he decided for active service in the United States Army.

On June 19, 1945, during the final phase of the battle for Okinawa, General Easley went to the front to check the progress of his troops as they cleared the last Japanese positions. After a Japanese machine gun opened fire and wounded one of his aides, General Easley crawled to the top of a knoll to try to locate its position. As he peered over the edge of the knoll, the machine gun fired a burst in his direction, and two rounds hit him in the forehead, killing him instantly. He was the second general officer killed in action during one week on Okinawa. He was buried on Okinawa, but later reburied at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.