Lieutenant General Charles B. Eichelberger was born in LaGrange, Georgia on November 19, l934. He graduated Junior College at Georgia Military College in Milledgeville, Georgia and entered the Army in September 1955 as a Private. He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant upon graduating from the Infantry Officer's Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia in 1957.
Following training at the Infantry Center, he was assigned as a Platoon Leader and Watch Commander, 5th US Army Security Agency Field Station in Hawaii. At Fort Bragg, North Carolina in 1960, he was assigned to the 317th US Army Security Agency (USASA) Battalion. During this tour he commanded the first Army Security Agency Direct Support Airborne Company supporting the 82nd Airborne Division.
In 1962, Eichelberger was assigned to Vietnam for duty as the S-2/S-3 of the 3rd Radio Research Unit. He then returned to Fort Bragg to the 317th ASA Battalion and served as the S-3, and he was assigned as the Operations Officer for combat operations in the Dominican Republic conflict.
In 1965-66, he served as an Intelligence Analyst with the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, US Army Europe. Later in 1966, he was assigned as Chief, Intelligence Support Indication Center, US Forces Korea and Eighth US Army. (This was during the White House Raid by North Korean infiltrators into Seoul and the later US Naval intelligence gathering ship Pueblo and its crew's capture by the North Koreans.)
He attended the regular course at the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, graduating in 1969. Thereafter, he was assigned as Chief and Senior Instructor for the Cryptologic Committee of the Advanced Course Department at the US Army Intelligence School, Fort Holabird, Maryland.
Eichelberger returned again to Fort Bragg where he commanded the 313th US Army Security Agency Battalion (Airborne) from July 1970 until June 1973. Next, he established and commanded the first Cryptologic Support Group assigned in support of US Army Pacific until July 1975. He attended the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, graduating in June 1976.
After graduation from the Army War College, he served as Deputy Director for Intelligence, Intelligence Center Pacific (Hawaii) until January 1977. At that time he was assigned as J-3, Commander in Chief, Pacific Command as a Duty Director for Operations and later as Deputy Chief, Command and Control Division.
In June 1978, he assumed command of the Intelligence and Security Command's Field Station in Berlin, Germany. He returned from this group-level command in August 1980 at which time he became the Division Chief for the Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Electronic Warfare Division of the Requirements Directorate Headquarters, Department of the Army at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.
In October 1982, he became the Deputy Commander of the US Army Intelligence Center and School, Fort Huachuca, Arizona. After being promoted to Brigadier General in 1984, he was assigned to US Army Central Command, Mc Dill Air Force Base, Tampa, Florida as the J-2. During this time, he made several trips to the Middle East to brief leaders in Middle Eastern countries on the Iran-Iraq War and its effect on the stability of the region.
As a Major General, his next assignment was as G-2 of US Army Europe headquartered in Heidelberg, Germany from 1986-1988. From there he served on the Army Staff at the Pentagon as the Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, and took over as the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence after receiving his promotion to Lieutenant General in 1989.
While serving in this position, he directed the planning for Intelligence operations and support of allied forces during the First Gulf War that successfully liberated Kuwait from Saddam Hussein's forces in 1991.
An additional part of this office was the Directorate of the Foreign Liaison Office to which all Foreign Military Attaches from eighty-six countries around the world were assigned. He was associated both professionally and socially with these foreign officers and their families during their tours of duty in Washington.
Lieutenant General Eichelberger served on the Army Staff until his retirement at Fort Myer, Virginia in October 1991 after 36 years of service.
Among his many awards and decorations are the Defense Service Medal, Legion of Merit with three oak-leaf clusters, both the Joint and the Army Meritorious Service Medals, two Army Commendation Medals. He holds the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm and both the Army and Air Force Unit Commendation Awards and Master Parachutist Badge.
General Eichelberger held a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nebraska and a Master of Arts Degree from Pepperdine University.
After retiring to Peachtree City Georgia, the General worked for five years as International Sales Director for California Microwave, Incorporated and made several around the world trips as part of the job.
In 2002, the decision was made to move to Sachse, Texas to be near family members. While in Sachse, the General was active in the community and was a familiar figure at City Council meetings. He was a featured speaker at opening ceremonies at the Sachse Fall Fest in 2004 and again in 2007.
General Eichelberger was the guest speaker at the Sachse Historical Society Veterans' Day program November 5, 2011 honoring those men and women who served and sacrificed to preserve freedom in our country.
General Eichelberger passed away December 27, 2021. He is survived by his wife Jackie, two daughters Chris Benator and Terrie Safranca, four grandchildren Jacob Benator, Leah Benator, Jackie Safranca, Christopher Safranca and eight great grandchildren.