RECREATION & FITNESS

Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame

Bill McMillan
Class of 2011

Jack LummusWilliam "Bill" McMillan, Jr was born, in Frostburg, Maryland on January 29, 1929... shooting career started in 1949, finishing first in pistol matches with a score of 541 which began an award-winning 30-year shooting career... 1952-1976 - competed in six Olympic Games, winning the gold in 1960... USMC Service Rifle Championship (1955), General Custer Trophy (1956, 1963), National Pistol Champion (1957), US Distinguished International Shooter Badge (1962), Five-time winner of the Marine Corps Rifle and Pistol Aggregate Lauchheimer Trophy, Winner of National Individual Championships (1963), Member of winning U.S. Rapid-Fire Pistol Team Pan American Games (1963), Gold Medal Pan American Games (1967), and recipient of the Natural Trophy (1971), and coach of the U.S. Pan American Team (1975)... 1978 - new national pistol shooting trophy for Marines was established by Headquarters Marine Corps. The McMillan Trophy is awarded to the Marine with the highest aggregate score in service pistol competitions sponsored by the National Board for the Promotion of Rifle Practice.

William "Bill" McMillan, Jr was born, in Frostburg, Maryland on January 29, 1929. The son of a silk worker, McMillan did not show an affinity for shooting at an early age. During his high school years, McMillan participated in intramural basketball and softball. He wanted play football, but was not blessed with the stature to compete on the school team. Soon after graduation from high school in 1946, McMillan decided to enlist in the Marine Corps due to an interest in aviation and a desire to be a ball turret gunner.

McMillan was sent to Parris Island, South Carolina for boot camp July 8, 1946. At the time of his enlistment McMillan requested a duty assignment in aviation units and upon completion of basic training; he was transferred to SMS-11, MAG-11, 2MAW, FMF, MCAS Cherry Point. After seven months as an aviation machinist McMillan requested, and received an honorable discharge from the Marine Corps due to his dislike for the job.

In May of 1947, McMillan re-enlisted in the Marine Corps and served with the 1st Guard Company, Marine Barracks at the U.S. Naval Base in Brooklyn, New York. McMillan served as an Ordinance Officer and Marksman Instructor. His duty stops included MCS Quantico, NTC San Diego, MCRD San Diego, Okinawa, and MCB Camp Pendleton. During his career he advanced from the rank of Private to Lieutenant Colonel. He honorably served his country in both the Korean and Vietnam wars. His personal decorations include the: Korean Service medal with two stars, Korean Presidential Unit Citation, World War II Victory Medal, United Nations Medal, Combat Action Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm, National Defense Medal, Vietnam service medal with one Silver Star, Navy Unit Commendation, Bronze Star with Combat "V", and Legion of Merit Good Conduct Medal-two Bronze Stars. McMillan retired from the Marine Corps in 1974.

Bill McMillan's shooting career got off to an auspicious start in April of 1949. He was picked to be on the Brooklyn Navy yard rifle team for the Marine Corps Eastern Division matches being held at MCB Quantico. During competition, McMillan was told to either shoot in the pistol matches or be assigned to the detail of picking up brass in the afternoon. McMillan finished first in the pistol matches with a score of 541 and began an award-winning 30-year shooting career. From 1952-1976, McMillan competed in six Olympic Games, winning the gold in 1960 by defeating two other shooters, 147-139-135, in a three way shoot-off for the Men's 25m Rapid- Fire Pistol Competition. His victory led to his selection as the carrier of the U.S. flag and leader of the United States Olympic Team during the 1960 Olympic Games closing ceremony. McMillan's storied shooting career included: USMC Service Rifle Championship (1955), General Custer Trophy (1956, 1963), National Pistol Champion (1957), US Distinguished International Shooter Badge (1962), Five-time winner of the Marine Corps Rifle and Pistol Aggregate Lauchheimer Trophy, Winner of National Individual Championships (1963), Member of winning U.S. Rapid-Fire Pistol Team Pan American Games (1963), Gold Medal Pan American Games (1967), and recipient of the Natural Trophy (1971), and coach of the U.S. Pan American Team (1975).

After McMillan retired from the Marine Corps in 1974, he worked with the San Diego County Sheriff's Department as weapons training coordinator until his retirement in 1981. In 1978 a new national pistol shooting trophy for Marines was established by Headquarters Marine Corps. The McMillan Trophy is awarded to the Marine with the highest aggregate score in service pistol competitions sponsored by the National Board for the Promotion of Rifle Practice. Lieutenant Colonel William W. McMillan Jr. passed away on June 6, 2000 in Encinitas, California.

Shooting Awards:

  • 1952, 60, 64, 68, 72, 76- U.S. Olympic Team Member
  • 1954 - Winner Host Match Pistol Championship, World Championships, Caracas, Venezuela
  • 1955 - Member of U.S. Pan American Team, Mexico City, Mexico
  • 1956 - Winner National Trophy Individual Pistol Championship, Camp Perry, Ohio
  • 1957 - Winner National Pistol Championships, Camp Perry, Ohio
  • 1958 - Winner Center Fire Pistol, World Championships, Moscow, Russia
  • 1958 and 1963- International Center Fire Pistol Champion
  • 1959 - Winner Marine Corps Pistol, Rifle and Aggregate Championships, Marine Corps Matches, Camp Mathews, California
  • 1960- Gold medal in the Rapid Fire Pistol Olympic Games
  • 1962 - Member, U.S. Team, World Championships, Cairo, Egypt
  • 1963 - Winner National Trophy Individual Championships, Camp Perry, Ohio; Winner Center Fire Pistol, Pan American Games, Sao Paolo, Brazil
  • 1967 - Member of Winning U.S. Rapid Fire Pistol Team, Pan American Games, Winnipeg, Canada
  • 1967- Gold medal for Rapid Fire Pistol Pan American Games in Winnipeg, Canada
  • 1970 - Member Winning Pistol National Trophy Team Championship, Camp Perry, Ohio
  • 1971 - Member Winning Enlisted Men's Trophy Team Match, Camp Perry, Ohio
  • Team Captain, Marine Corps Shooting Teams: 1970 National Trophy Rifle and Pistol Championships; 1970, 1971 and 1972 Interservice Rifle Team Championships; and 1970 and 1972 National Metallic Site Championships
  • Five-time winner of the coveted Marine Corps Rifle and Pistol Aggregate Lauchheimer Trophy