Joel R. Steine, LTC, USA, retired, of Killeen, TX, died September 26, 2021, at the age of 87. Joel was born to Benjamin and Lucille Berinstein Steine September 29, 1933. He spent the majority of his childhood in Warrenton, Ga., which he called home. Upon graduating from high school, he attended The Citadel, graduating with a BS in Civil Engineering in 1954. He entered the Army in that year as a second lieutenant. In 1956 he attended flight school and in 1957 helicopter school. In 1958 he was assigned to Panama and then Nicaragua where he flew in support of mapping operations. Returning to the states he was assigned to the Army’s Special Air Mission, flying members of Congress and ranking officers. Next was Vietnam where he served two tours. First, 1962-63, flying helicopter gunships, where he led his platoon at the Battle of Ap Bac, earning a Distinguished Flying Cross. Volunteering for a second tour, he deployed with the 1/9 Cavalry Squadron, then the divisions’ reconnaissance squadron, where he oversaw the maintenance of the squadrons 92 helicopters, duty for which he was awarded the Legion of Merit. Upon returning to the states, the Army sponsored his enrollment in graduate school at the Georgia Institute of Technology where he earned an MS in Operations Research. Medically grounded from flying status in 1967, he operated seaports in Thailand and the Azores in addition to staff assignments. He served in the Army for 27 years, retiring in 1981. Upon retirement, he was a consultant to the Army for 14 years in the field of aircraft maintenance, serving as a corporate director of studies and analyses. He was a Certified Professional Logistician.
Again retiring, he and his wife, Judy, moved to Killeen in 1996. He was a director of the Cen-Tex Humane Society, and served on Killeen’s Planning and Zoning Commission, Civil Service Commission, Zoning Board of Adjustment, and several special commissions.
Joel Steine was a man of honor, integrity, great humor, and dedication to his family. He is survived by his wife, Judith D. Steine, Killeen, a son, Bob Steine, Wimberley, TX, a daughter, Sara Steine Braddy, Harker Heights, two granddaughters, and many nieces and nephews.
He could often be found at the Clear Creek Golf Course searching for his ball in the rough.
A memorial service for Joel will be held at St. Christophers Episcopal Church, 2800 Trimmier Road, Killeen, TX at 10:30 a.m., Wednesday on October 6, 2021. Inurnment with military honors will follow at the Texas State Veterans Cemetery, Killeen.
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