Retired Army Lt. Gen. Allen M. Burdett Jr., 58, a heavily decorated combat veterans of three wars, died of cancer July 8 at Brooke Army Hospital in San Antonio, Tex.
Gen. Burdett commanded a rifle company in the Seventh Army's 63rd Infantry Division in Europe during World War II. He led an infantry battalion of the 7th Infantry Division in Korea during the conflict there.
He spent two tours of duty in Vietnam during the 1960s. In 1965 he commanded a unit of the 1st Cavalry Division. In the late 1950s, he was assistant division commander and then a brigade commander in the 101st Airborne Division.
His decorations included two Distinguished Service Medals, two Silver Star Medials, two Distinguished Flying Crosses, two Legions of Merit, three Bronze Star Medals, 25 Air Medals and the Purple Heart Medal.
Although he spent the bulk of his Army career as a leader of infantry, Gen. Burdett also held the ratings of Master Army Aviator and Senior Parachutist. He was a graduate of the Command and General Staff College, the Armed Forces Staff College, and the Army War College. He earned a master's degree in international relations at George Washington University in 1965.
His Washington tours included years in the mid-1960s with the Pentagon's research and engineering branch and a year as Army Aviation Director in 1970. He was commander of the Fifth Army, based at Fort Sam Houston in Texas, for three years before retiring in July 1978.
Gen Burdett was a native of Washington and a longtime resident of this area. He was a 1939 graduate of Western High School and commanded the high school cadet company drill team, which won a city-wide competition that year. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1943.
During his years of residence in Washington and then Falls Church, Gen. Burdett was a member of the Army & Navy Club, the Army Navy Country Club, and the Society of Cincinnati. He was a deacon of the Falls Church Presbyterian Church.
Survivors include his wife of 32 years, the former Antionette Salley, a daughter, Margaret B., and a son, Douglas M., all of San Antonio; two other sons, Allen M. II, of Saluda, N.C., and William M., of Tuxedo, N.C., and two grandchildren.