SITREP 15 December 2018 We Lose a Friend, America Loses a Hero
Hello all you Vets in the Fight, this is David Miller, with your weekly Special Operations Speaks, Vets in the Fight SITREP.
We were well into writing a different SITREP late Thursday morning, when retired Air Force Lieutenant General Tom McInerney notified us that Admiral James A. ‘Ace’ Lyons had passed away peacefully in his sleep, at age 91, less than two hours before. After the shock settled in, we decided to change our approach and dedicate this SITREP to the memory of a colleague, friend and national naval hero.
Admiral Ace Lyons was born in Perth Amboy, NY in 1927. He attended and was commissioned from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis as an ensign in June 1952 as a Surface Warfare Officer. Lyons’ 36-year career was a tour de force of command assignments ranging from captain of a destroyer, deploying to the Middle East during the Six Day War, sustaining close ties to that volatile part of the world throughout his career, and into civilian life. Admiral Lyons served as Chief of the U.S. Saudi Naval Expansion Program. He rose to four-star Command as Commander-in-Chief U.S. Pacific Command, the largest geographic command in the U.S. military. He served as Deputy Chief of Naval Operations as well as Senior Military Representative to the United Nations.
In civilian life, Lyons established Lion Associates LLC, a professional consultancy. He sat on the boards of several corporations.
Special Operations Speaks first introduction to Admiral Lyons came with the Benghazi crisis that saw four Americans killed under when
Department of State faulty security planning and procedures left the classified compound vulnerable to armed Libyan factions which overran the facility on 12 September 2012, killing an ambassador and his communications specialist at the outset, and two former Navy Seals who put up a ten-hour fight to defend the position.
Under the auspices of the Accuracy In Media news agency, SOS joined a dozen members of varied background, to include the senior member, Admiral Lyons, on the Citizen’s Commission on Benghazi (CCB) which produced two extensive reports on the circumstances and decisions surrounding the Benghazi tragedy.
In February 2016, Admiral Lyons was our keynote speaker at the Veteran Patriots Action Conference in Charleston, South Carolina, where he held the auditorium spellbound with his insights into the key decision-making processes Washington in times of crisis, to include the Iran Hostage Crisis.
With the transformation of the CCB into the Citizens Commission on National Security (CCNS), Admiral Lyons gripped the bit in his teeth and dove into the op-ed arena with renewed energy. His articles in the Washington Time and the Canada Free Press targeted with the key friction points the emerging Chinese threat to key naval and commercial sea lines of communication in the South China Sea; Russia and its aggression against the Ukraine; the continuing impasse of Syria; and his strategy for the Ukraine.
In James A. ‘Ace’ Lyons, the Nation has been gifted a full measure of honor, dedication, insight, energy and boundless intellect. And, we who have been privileged to have worked under his tutelage, come away grateful for the opportunity to learn from a master of grand strategy.
Admiral Lyons was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, René Chevalier Lyons, by only five weeks, and who passed away suddenly on 1 November 2018.
Our prayers go out for the Lyons family.
Burial will be at the U.S. Naval Academy at a date and time to be announced.
Keep up the good fight. Remain steadfast and know that ours is a righteous fight. This is David Miller for Special Operations Speaks and Vets in the Fight everywhere. Until next week, may God Bless us and our exceptional Republic. De Oppresso Liber.