Lieutenant Colonel William C. Hazen grew up in Henniker, New Hampshire. In high school, he was a star basketball player and during his senior year, he led his team to the NH State Championship at the field house in Durham. He attended the University of New Hampshire and graduated in 1958. Bill earned a degree in Business Administration and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Army.
During his military career, Lieutenant Colonel Hazen graduated from Airborne School, Jump Master School, and was awarded the Senior Parachutist Badge. He was also a graduate of Ranger School and Pathfinder School. Lieutenant Colonel Hazen was selected to join the relatively new and elite Special Forces (Green Beret) and served with two separate Special Forces units during his tours in Vietnam. He was awarded the Combat Infantryman's Badge and Bronze Star for his service in Vietnam. After his second tour of duty in Southeast Asia, he was handpicked to staff, equip, and field the 1st Airmobile Division (now 1st Cavalry) at Fort Benning, Georgia. This unit revolutionized modern combat, utilizing helicopters to swiftly move troops and equipment around the battlefield. His awards and decorations also include the Air Medal.
In the latter part of his career, Lieutenant Colonel Hazen completed a two-year tour at Yongsan in Seoul, Korea. He had a strong desire to return to New Hampshire and serve the University and the State he loved. Subsequently in 1976, he was selected as the Professor of Military Science and Commander of Army ROTC at the University of New Hampshire. Lieutenant Colonel Hazen served as the PMS for four years and made significant improvements to the ROTC program, as he led the training and education of aspiring young officer candidates. His educational credentials include a Master’s Degree in Vocational Counseling from Shippensburg State University, a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies from UNH, and completion of the Command and General Staff College.
Lieutenant Colonel Hazen taught his sons the importance of serving our Country. All three of his sons served in the United States Army. Ted was a career Aviation Warrant Officer with combat service in Iraq, Larry as a commissioned Engineer Officer with combat service in Iraq, and Mike as a commissioned Aviation Officer.
Lieutenant Colonel Hazen retired from the Army in 1981. His late wife Judy had a private practice as an occupational therapist and saw patients across southern New Hampshire, in hospitals and private homes. Bill managed the administrative parts of her practice after his retirement. They also operated a small retirement home out of their residence in Durham. For a time, Bill Hazen also worked as a volunteer at a veteran support organization helping survivors of active duty servicemen obtain benefits. Bill was active in the Congregational Church in Rye, NH, and is still an active member of the church in Kittery Point, ME, where he has served in many leadership positions.
For meritorious service to the United States Army and leadership of the Army ROTC Program at the University of New Hampshire, Lieutenant Colonel William C. Hazen is inducted into the ROTC Hall of Fame.