Louis N. “Chap” Ashmore attributes much of his life’s success to his service in the Vietnam War and later in the business world with the foundational lessons of leadership he learned at Georgia Military College. He attended GMC Junior College from 1963-1965, and after graduating with his associate degree, Ashmore obtained a Building Construction degree from the University of Florida.
Upon his graduation from the University of Florida, he entered the U.S. Army in 1968 as a Second Lieutenant in the Infantry. He graduated from the Infantry Officer’s Basic Course, Airborne School, and Ranger School, and was then assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division, where he completed Jumpmaster School. On October 20, 1969, he was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 7th Regiment, First Cavalry Division in Vietnam and was promoted to First Lieutenant.
While serving with C Company as a Platoon Leader, he led a Ranger Recon Team to secure a position for a fire base in Cambodia, “Fire Base X-Ray.” This was the first fire base established for the April 1970 Cambodian Excursion. Prior to this, his unit mostly worked out of Fire Base Jamie, which was approximately six kilometers from the Cambodian border. 1LT Ashmore engaged in multiple fire fights in and around the Fish Hook and Parrot’s Beak areas.
While serving in the Vietnam War, 1LT Ashmore was awarded numerous medals for his heroism and service. He earned the Silver Star for gallantry in action during a firefight where he took two rocket launchers and crawled under intense fire to eliminate an enemy location. He received the Bronze Star with “V” Device for heroism in ground combat against hostile forces. While under intense fire including RPG, mortar, and machine gun fire, 1LT Ashmore moved from position to position to direct his men so they would not be surrounded by the enemy’s superior forces. He was also awarded the Bronze Star for achievement in ground operations against hostile forces.
1LT Ashmore was wounded on February 3, 1970 when he was hit in the leg and upper body. A medevac took him to Camp Zama, Japan for two months to stabilize his wounds. He left Japan in April 1970 and was taken to Martin Army Hospital at Fort Benning, GA until mid-December 1970. In total, he spent almost an entire year in the hospital recovering from his injuries. For the wounds he sustained in battle, 1LT Ashmore was awarded the Purple Heart.
Additionally, 1LT Ashmore was awarded the Combat Infantryman Badge, Air Medal, National Defense Service Medal, the Parachutist Badge, Ranger Tab, Vietnam Service Medal, and Vietnam Campaign Medal.
After serving in Vietnam, 1LT Ashmore joined the 160th Military Police Battalion in Tallahassee, Florida. He was promoted to Captain and assumed the position of Company Commander. While in that leadership role, the company was awarded “Best Army Reserve Company” in Florida. CPT Ashmore retired from the U.S. Army in 1980.
He then went on to embark on a successful construction career and founded Chap Ashmore and Associates in 1993. As President, he leads the company in the construction, development, and consulting of multi-family projects throughout the Southeastern United States. Ashmore has participated in the construction of over 14,000 apartment units in Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, and the Carolinas. In addition, he has been active with Habitat for Humanity in several communities and with the American Legion.
Ashmore has been married to his wife Marie for 50 years. Together they have one daughter, Addie, and one grandchild, Jessie Lanier.