Dr. Thomas McElheny, Founder and CEO of ChurchPlaza served 7 years in the United States Marines. Beginning as a rifle platoon commander in Vietnam, his personal decorations include the Bronze Star with valor device, Combat Action Medal and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. Following specialized training, he later became a team leader, jump master and Airborne-operations officer for various Marine ANGLICO and Force Recon units. In those duties he was honored to have trained and/or served as a Liaison Officer to the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, US Special Forces Command, Seal Teams 1 and 3, Royal Marines, Greek and Turkish Army units and also as an exchange airborne instructor at the Greek Army Airborne Training Command in Athens Greece. Tom earned multiple airborne certifications and wings to include Navy and Marine Corps, United States Army, Greek and Canadian Army.

Tom’s son Tavis McElheny, stake holder and administrator, served 8 years as a decorated Coast Guard search and rescue pilot after 4 years as a police officer. His personal decorations include service during hurricanes Katrina, Ike and others. As command pilot, he flew the first Coast Guard fixed wing aircraft into Haiti after the devastating earthquake and his aircraft provided the first over flight intelligence photos to American commanders in Miami and Washington. He also served as pilot and escort for Katie Couric in her first reports and photos available after the disaster. Tavis is a rated pilot in multiple aircraft to include multi-engine jets, multi and single engine turbo, piston and rotary (helicopters). During his service he was forced to make three “declared emergency” landings.

Tom’s son Captain Cail McElheny, stake holder, is currently a Captain and helicopter pilot with the United States Marines. Cail has served three Mid-East deployments, his first two as a pilot and most recently as a ground officer in Marja and Sagan, Helmand Province, Afghanistan. He participated in and was decorated for extensive close ground combat and his areas of responsibility were among the most active in enemy contact throughout his tour. Many from his unit were wounded or gave their lives. Cail currently serves as a flight instructor at a military command.

We are but three in a long line of McElheny men and women who have had this honor while serving in every American conflict since 1756.

God Bless America!

John 15:13

1 John 3:16