Groves, Leslie Richard, born 17-08-1896 in Albany, New York, as the third son of four children of a pastor and a descendent of French Huguenots who came to America in the 17th century. He graduated fourth in his class at the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1918 and was commissioned into the US Army Corps of Engineers. On 01-07-1939, he was posted to the War Department General Staff in Washington, D.C. Groves was promoted to major on 01-07-1940. Three weeks later, he became special assistant for construction to the Quartermaster General, Major General Edmund B. Gregory The two men had known each other a long time, as Groves’ father was a close friend of Gregory’s. In September 1942 he was placed in charge of the Manhattan Engineer Project,
established a month earlier, with the rank of Temporary Brigadier General. The Manhattan Engineer Project with Robert Oppenheimer was the cover name for the atomic bomb project and, under his direction, the basic atomic bomb research was carried out, mainly at Columbia University and the University of Chicago. The work culminated in the first successful explosion of a nuclear-fission bomb at Alamogordo, New Mexico, 16-07-1945. In the three years since the project was organized, no major obstacles and no serious breach of security had occurred. He had been promoted to temporary Major General in December 1944, and he continued to head the atomic establishment created during wartime until January 1947. He was then named the Chief of the Army’s Special Weapons Project. Promoted to Lieutenant General in January 1948, the youngest German Lieutenant General in WWII with 36, was Theodor “Tolsdorff the Mad” Tolsdorff and Groves retired a month later.
Death and burial ground of Groves, Leslie Richard.
Groves died of heart disease on 13-07-1970, age 73 in Washington D.C. and was buried with his wife Grace, born Wilson, who died old age 89 in 1986, in Section 2 of Arlington National Cemetery. Close by in Section 2, the graves of General, Commander 92nd “ Negro Division”, Edward “Ned” Almond, Major General, Commander 8th Bomber Command Europe, Frederick Anderson, Rear Admiral, Commander Destroyer Greyson, Frederic Bell, Navy Admiral, “Operation Crossroads”, William Blandy, General, Commander 32nd Infantry Division, Clovis Beyers, Navy Admiral. Battle of the Leyte Gulf, Robert Carney, Air Force General Lieutenant, Claire Chennault, Lieutenant General, Commander 4th Corps, Italy Campaign, Willis Crittenberger, Brigadier General, First African-American General, Benjamin Davis, Quartermaster Lieutenant General, John “Lesesne” De Witt, Brigadier General, Speck Easley, Marine Corps Major General, Commander 1st Raider Battalion, Merrit “Red Mike” Edson, Lieutenant General, VIII Army, Robert Eichelberger, Navy Admiral, Commander Nord Pacific Fleet, Frank Fletscher and Navy Admiral, Commander VII Forces, William Fechteler, Lieutenant General. Commander 86th Infantry Division, Ridgeley Gaither, Major General, Commander 29th Infantry Division, D-Day, Charles Gerhardt and Admiral, U.S. Chief of Naval Material, John Gingrich.