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Vernon J. Andrews, 1983-1991 The Adjutant General for Michigan

Vernon J. Andrews served as the Adjutant General of the Michigan National Guard and Director of the Michigan Department of Military Affairs from 1983 to 1991. He was born in Sturgis, Michigan, on December 12, 1929. He graduated from Sturgis High School in 1947. He obtained a bachelor of arts degree in pre-law in 1950 and a master's degree in history and political science in 1951, both from Michigan State University.

Andrews attended law school at the University of Michigan, earning his doctorate of law in 1956. He practiced law in the Lansing area for 27 years before his appointment as the Adjutant General. He was also the co-owner of a chain of 27 convenience food stores.

In 1982, he received an associate degree in aviation flight technology from Lansing Community College and is a commercial and instrument-rated pilot.

Military Career

Upon graduation from the Reserve Officer Training Course (ROTC), Andrews was appointed a second lieutenant in the Quartermaster Corps on June 13, 1953. His initial assignment was with the U.S. Army Reserve. From September 1953 to January 1956, he served with the airborne infantry. His next assignment was to the 206th ARDU, where he remained until August 1956. At that time, he was transferred to the 5106th Control Group, U.S. Army Reserve.

In September, 1958, Andrews joined the Michigan Army National Guard. He served as the Judge Advocate General for the 46th Infantry Division. He became Assistant Judge Advocate, while assigned to the 46th Administration Company, and was promoted to Captain in August 1959 and to Major in September 1963.

Andrews was transferred to Headquarters, Michigan Army National Guard, in February 1968 as the Assistant Inspector General. Following promotion to Lieutenant Colonel, in November 1969, Andrews was assigned as the Assistant Staff Judge Advocate General. He became Staff Judge Advocate General of the 72nd Support Center in October 1974 and was promoted to Colonel.

After commanding the 46th Infantry Brigade for 2-1/2 years, Andrews was appointed Assistant Division Commander of the 38th Infantry Division in February 1981. He was promoted to Brigadier General a month later.

Governor James Blanchard appointed Andrews as the Adjutant General for Michigan and Director of the Department of Military Affairs in May 1983. He received federal recognition for his promotion to Major General in October of that year. While Adjutant General, Andrews also served as chairperson of the National Guard Professional Education Center, Little Rock, Arkansas, from February 1983 to January 1982. He also served on the Army Reserve Forces Policy Committee for four years beginning in March 1987.

Culminating his eight years of service as Adjutant General, Andrews was promoted to Lieutenant General (MI) in December 1990. He completed his more than 32 years of military service on February 2, 1991.

Decorations and Awards

General Andrews has received the following federal decorations: Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal with three oak leaf clusters, National Defense Service Medal Second Award, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with 2 devices, and Army Service Medal. Other decorations earned by Andrews are: Michigan Distinguished Service Medal, Indiana National Guard Commendation Medal, Michigan Broadsword Medal with oak leaf cluster, and the National Guard Association of the United States Distinguished Service Medal.

Federal proficiency awards earned by Andrews include: Expert Infantryman's Badge, Parachutist Badge, and Senior Parachutist Badge.