They both attended basic combat training at Fort Lewis, Washington, advanced training at Fort Knox Kentucky, and basic airborne training at Ft Benning, Georgia.
He was the last Vietnam War veteran to serve in that position. His first assignment was to the Republic of Vietnam with A Troop, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment as a vehicle crewman. Upon completion of his 1-year deployment he was assigned as a drill instructor at Fort Benning, Georgia until his enlistment expired.
Tilley left the active duty Army for two years and served in the Reserve Component before enlisting again in the Active Component in September 1971.
He held a variety of important positions culminating in his assignment as the Sergeant Major of the Army. He previously held the senior enlisted position as Senior Enlisted Leader of the United States Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.
Other assignments he held as Command Sergeant Major were 1st Battalion, 10th Cavalry, Fort Knox, 194th Armored Brigade, 1st Armored Division, Bad Kreuznach, Germany, and United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command, Arlington, Virginia. Tilley held every key leadership position including tank commander, section leader, drill sergeant, platoon sergeant, senior instructor, operations sergeant and first sergeant.
His military education includes the First Sergeants Course and the Sergeants Major Academy.
He is a graduate of the basic airborne course, drill sergeant school and the master gunner"s course. 10 service stripes. Tilley retired from the Army in January 2004 and is currently the Chief Executive of JTilley, Incorporated., a services company based in Tampa, Florida that specializes in placing military leaders into corporate America.
This organization creates awareness and building support of their service, sacrifice and needs through partnerships with military focused organizations. The organization also sponsors military career fairs and hiring events regularly in major military areas around the country.
These events are usually in conjunction with high-profile concerts or entertainment.
Special emphasis is always given to the men and women who were wounded in action (WIA).