Johnnie Aycock was born in Abilene, Texas in 1947. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1965 and spent one year with the First Infantry Division in Vietnam. Aycock volunteered to extend his tour of duty as a member of the Military Assistance Command – Vietnam (MACV) Team No. 52, advising and assisting the Republic of Vietnam in the Vinh Long Province.
Aycock earned the Vietnam Service Award, U.S. Army Bronze Star with Valor, National Defense Medal, and the Army Commendation Medal. Additionally, he earned the Cross of Gallantry with Star and Service Medal from the Republic of Vietnam.
Upon Aycock’s return to Texas, he joined the Texas Department of Public Safety as a Highway Patrolman in 1968. In 1973, he transferred to the DPS Narcotics Squad and was promoted to Narcotics Squad Supervisor in 1979.
Aycock was promoted to Texas Ranger in 1983. He became one of four Texas Rangers to receive the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Medal of Valor, and the only Ranger to receive the award twice.
In January 1987, Aycock’s first Medal of Valor was “awarded in recognition of the gallant and courageous manner in which he effected the rescue of a kidnapped child.” On January 22, 1987, Aycock and Texas Ranger Stanley Keith Guffey concealed themselves in an automobile delivered to the kidnapper. In the exchange of gunfire between the Rangers and the suspect, the suspect was killed, and Sgt. Guffey was mortally wounded.
Aycock’s second Medal of Valor was awarded in January 1995 for his “valorous performance and extraordinary skill exhibited during a hostage situation.” Aycock, at great personal risk, exhibited extraordinary courage, skill, and judgment in negotiating with the individual and successfully rescued the 14-month-old child and arrested the individual.
Johnnie Aycock retired in 2001, after a thirty-three-year career with the Texas Department of Public Safety, including eighteen years with the Texas Rangers.
Inducted during the 2023 Bicentennial year.