William Harvey Rogers was born on December 7th, 1935 in Stuttgart, Arkansas to George H. and Zora Isabelle Rogers. He attended Ouachita Baptist University at Arkadelphia, Arkansas and earned a Baccalaureate Degree in Business Administration and Economics in 1956.
Upon graduation, he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Field Artillery and attended the Field Artillery Officer Basic Course in September, 1956. After serving tours with the Field Artillery Officer Candidate School at Fort Sill, 2nd Battalion Combat Team in Iceland and the U.S. Army Aggressor Center at Fort Riley, Kansas, he returned to the Field Artillery Career Course in 1962. Tours with the 2nd Armored Division at Fort Hood, Texas, and 2nd Battalion, 18th Artillery in Butzbach, Germany, followed. In May, 1966 he was assigned to the 9th Infantry Division at Fort Riley, Kansas and deployed to Vietnam in December with that unit. In Vietnam, he served as Intelligence Officer with the 9th Infantry Division Artillery and as Battalion Operations Officer with the 1st Battalion, 84th Artillery.
After his tour in Vietnam, he was selected for attendance at the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Upon graduation, he was assigned to the Office of the Chief of Reserve Components, Department of the Army, in the Pentagon where he served for three years. Next came tours as Executive Officer, U.S. Army Garrison, Yongsan, Seoul Korea, and then to Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, where he served as Chief of the Field Artillery Team and as Deputy Chief of the U.S. Army Redstone Readiness Group.
In February 1977 LTC Rogers was reassigned to Fort Sill, Oklahoma and served as Deputy Director of the Communications and Electronics Department and Executive Officer of the Directorate of Combat Developments. It was at Fort Sill in 1978 that he was promoted to Colonel and assigned as the Commander of the Field Artillery School Brigade.
Colonel Rogers returned to Korea in 1981 where he served as Commander, Combat Support Coordination Team #1, in support of the 1st ROK Army. He was the primary advisor to the Commanding General, 1st ROK Army and as the nuclear weapons employment specialist in the eastern half of the Korean Peninsula. His 26-year career was culminated with a tour as Director of Plans and Training, Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Colonel Rogers retired at Fort Sill, Oklahoma on October 31st, 1982.
His decorations include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Department of Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Army Meritorious Service Medal (w/3 Oak Leaf Clusters), Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Commendation Medal, and the Army Commendation Medal for Valor, The Korean Order of National Security Merit (Sam IL Medal), Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry w/Palm, Civil Action Honor Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Army General Staff Identification Badge, Meritorious Unit Commendation, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Army Service Ribbon, and The Overseas Service Ribbon (second award).
After retirement, Colonel Rogers accepted a position on the instructional staff of the University of Oklahoma where he taught various leadership and communication skills to federal executives. In 1986, he became a sub-contractor with Chick-fil-A Inc, opening a store in Sherman, Texas. In November, 1990 he and his family moved to Abilene where he became the owner/operator of the Chick-fil-A in the Mall of Abilene. Colonel Rogers retired from the restaurant business on December 31st, 2003.
He was married to the former Patsy C. Horton of Lawton, Oklahoma. The Rogers celebrated their 61st wedding anniversary in 2021. They have two sons, William Mark, of Abilene and Gregory Grant and daughter-in-law Tonya Nicole, of Fort Worth Texas, four grandsons, Nicholas Ryan and Corporal Matthew Blake of Fort Worth, Jacob Michel of Wills Point Texas and Zachary Allen of Kent Washington, one granddaughter, the “Apple of his Eye”, Kathryn Grace of Fort Worth Texas.
Colonel Rogers was an active member of the 1st Baptist Church, Abilene and was a member of the board of deacons. He has been a Bible Study teacher, Chairman of the Insurance Committee, the Stewardship Committee and the Budget Committee. He was campaign manager of the 1999 capital fund drive, Heritage and Hope, which raised pledges of over 4.7 million dollars for capital improvements in the church. His great love was serving on the missions committee and on the board of City Light Ministries. In addition, he served on the Board of Directors of Disability Resources Incorporated and was the Chairman of the Board of its subsidiary corporation, Disability Resources Operations Inc. He also served on the Board of Development of Hardin Simmons University.
Visitation with the family will be from 5:00-7:00 pm on Sunday, June 12 at The Hamil Family Funeral Home, 6449 Buffalo Gap Rd. Funeral services will be held at 9:30 am at First Baptist Church on Monday, June 13, followed by burial at 11:00 am at the Texas State Veterans Cemetery at Abilene.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.