Lieutenant General (R) and Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence LTG Emmett Paige, Jr.
, 86, died peacefully in his Fort Washington, MD home on August 31, 2017.
When 16-year-old Emmett Paige, Jr. dropped out of high school in 1947 to enlist in the Army, he likely had little inkling that he would begin a career of military service that would span over 41 years. After spending five years as an enlisted man and NCO, Paige, who would rise to the rank of lieutenant general, was accepted to and completed the Signal Corps Officers' Candidate School. In 1952, he was commissioned a second lieutenant. He served in various Signal units over the years, including the 40th and 41st Signal Construction Battalions and the 9th Signal Battalion. Serving with the 57th Signal Company in Yongsan, Korea, he had responsibility for all fixed plant communications serving the United Nations Command, U.S. Forces Korea, and the Eighth Army. During the Vietnam War, he commanded the 361st Signal Battalion in Vietnam and the 11th Signal Group based at Fort Huachuca, Arizona. General Paige went on to serve two tours with the Defense Communications Agency; commanded the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Engineering and Installation Agency at Fort Huachuca, the Army's Communications Systems Agency and Communications Research and Development Com- mand at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey; the Army's Electronics Research and Development Command, Adelphi, Maryland; and the Army Information Systems Command at Fort Huachuca.
Following his retirement in 1988, General Paige became President and Chief Operating Officer of OAO Corporation, an aerospace and information Systems Company in Greenbelt, Maryland. He was "recalled" to active duty in 1993, when he was confirmed by the Senate as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence. He served in this post until 1997, when he returned to OAO. Among General Paige's awards and decorations are the Distinguished Service Medal with oak-leaf cluster; the Legion of Merit with two oak-leaf clusters; a Bronze Star; and the Meritorious Service Medal. He was inducted by the Signal Regiment as a Distinguished Member in 1990, along with his appointment as Honorary Colonel of the Regiment. General Paige is also the recipient of "Information Week" magazine's "Chief Information Officer of the Year" award in 1987; the Armed forces communications-Electronics Association's Distinguished Service Medal in 1988; the Data Processing Management Association's Distinguished Information Sciences Award; the University of Maryland/Baltimore County's Engineer of the Year and Black Engineer Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995; "Communications Week" magazine's Visionary Award of the Year in 1996; and the Boy Scouts of America's Silver Beaver Award for Distinguished Service to Youth in 1997.
He is survived by his daughter Sandra Alexander; two sons, Anthony Paige and Micheal Davis (Denise); eight grandchildren, Marquies (Sara), Tia, James, Lauren, Cory, Antonio, Cara (Ross) and Mackenzie; four great-grandchildren, Jaida, Miles, Jordin and Liam; sister, Alezeta Wilson; 10 nieces and nephews, a host of other relatives and friends. He is preceded in death by his wife, Gloria.
Donations can be sent to the Northern Virginia Urban League in behalf of LTG Emmett Paige Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Scholarship, www.NVULLTGPAIGE.ORG., 1315 Duke Street, Alexandria Virginia 22314.LTG
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