Retired June 1, 1987.
Major General Thomas L. Craig is director, Plans and Policy Directorate (J-5), Headquarters U.S. European Command, Stuttgart-Vaihingen, West Germany.
General Craig was born in Shongaloo, Webster Parish, La., in 1937, and graduated from Haynesville (La.) High School in 1955. He earned a bachelor of science degree in physical sciences from Louisiana State University in 1959. He graduated from Squadron Officer School in 1964, Air Command and Staff College in 1968, and was a distinguished graduate of the National War College in 1977. While serving on the faculty of the Air Command and Staff College, General Craig obtained a master of science degree in education in 1971 from Troy (Ala.) State University.
He was commissioned through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program in August 1959 and entered active duty in December 1959. He completed primary pilot training at Moore Air Base, Texas, and received his wings in January 1961 at Laredo Air Force Base, Texas. He then served as an instructor and check pilot in T-33s, T-37s and T-38s at Williams Air Force Base, Ariz., until departing for Southeast Asia.
From November 1964 to November 1965 General Craig was assigned to III Corps, 10 ARVN Division, Republic of Vietnam, where he served as air liaison officer and forward air controller for both Vietnamese and U.S. Army units in the vicinity. In January 1966 he transferred to the 81st Tactical Fighter Wing at Royal Air Force Station Bentwaters, England, serving as emergency actions officer and later as an F-4 commander with the 91st Tactical Fighter Squadron.
The general returned to the United States in August 1968 as a student at the Air Command and Staff College. After graduation in June 1969, he remained at the college as an instructor. In August 1972 he joined the 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron as an F-4 commander at Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand. While at Udorn he served as assistant operations officer for the 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron and later was operations officer of the 4th Tactical Fighter Squadron.
When he returned from Thailand in September 1973, he was assigned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., as an air operations officer in the Command Plans Branch, Directorate of Plans, until July 1974. He then became executive to the director of plans, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Operations. After graduation from the National War College in August 1977, General Craig transferred to George Air Force Base, Calif., where he served successively as deputy commander for operations and then as vice commander of the 35th Tactical Fighter Wing.
The general was assigned as commander of the 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing, Bergstrom Air Force Base, Texas, in May 1979. In November 1980 General Craig transferred to Headquarters Tactical Air Command, Langley Air Force Base, Va., as inspector general and in June 1982 he became deputy chief of staff for requirements. He assumed his present duties in July 1984.
A command pilot with more than 4,500 flying hours, he flew 366 combat missions over both North Vietnam and the Republic of Vietnam. His military decorations and awards include the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross with two oak leaf clusters, Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with 30 oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal and Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm and silver star.
He was promoted to major general Oct. 1, 1983, with date of rank Sept. 1, 1980.