McPartland served in the armed forces for more than seven years, left active duty after his second Vietnam tour and entered the Reserves. He continued to serve in a multitude of command and staff assignments, was mobilized to active duty several times-including Desert Storm, and retired after 36 years of service as a Colonel. 

His decorations are numerous and include, in part, the Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star Medal and Meritorious Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster. John was also inducted in to the Hall of Fame at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma.

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