Patton, George Smith Jr.

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Patton, George Smith Jr., born 23-12-1923, in Boston, Massachusetts, a son of George Patton Sr.   and Beatrice Ayer Patton and had two sisters, Beatrice Smith (born March 1911- died 1952),  Ruth Ellen (born February 1915). Beatrix was married with General John Knight Waters Waters, John Knight.  At the Battle of Sidi Bou Zid, Tunisia in February 1943, Waters was captured by German forces and spent the next two years at prisoner-of war camps in Silesia, Czechoslovakia and Hammelburg, Germany. In March 1945 the US 3rd Army, under Task Force Baum, Raid of Hammelburg, reached the camp and liberated it.

During the assault, he was badly wounded in the leg and received initial treatment from an imprisoned Serbian doctor prior to being rescued. After spending a year in recovering from his wounds, he returned to duty in 1946 and became the Commandant of Cadets at West Point. Waters died 09-01-1989, age 82, in Washington.

Patton Jr was educated at The Hill School and  became a 1946, (birth year of the webmaster) graduate of West Point Patton Jr was initially trained as an infantry officer. His first assignment was to Regensburg, West Germany where he participated in the 1948 Berlin Airlift. The troops under his command were used to load supplies onto Air Force transport aircraft bound for Berlin. In 1952, a year after he returned from Germany, he married Joanne Holbrook. Patton served in Korea starting in February 1953, commanding “A” Company of the 140th Tank Battalion, 40 son of George Patton Sr,th Infantry Division “Sunshine Division” . Patton received his first Silver Star and the Purple Heart  in Korea. Returning to the United States in 1954, Patton, now a captain, was initially assigned to West Point but was quickly picked up as part of an exchange program and was sent to teach at the United States Naval Academy. Patton served a total of three tours of duty in Vietnam, the first from April 1962 to April 1963 at Military Assistance Command, Vietnam-Special Operations, during which he was promoted to lieutenant colonel. He then took command of the 2nd Medium Tank Battalion, 81st Armored Regiment of the 1st Armored Division at Fort. Hood Texas, before his second tour in 1967, this one lasting only three months. During Patton’s final and most intense tour, lasting from January 1968 to January 1969, he was awarded two Distinguished Service Crosses for his actions on the battlefield.  During this final tour, he was initially assigned as Chief of Operations and Plans at Headquarters, United States Army Vietnam. However, after his promotion to colonel in April 1968, he was given command of the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment. During his three tours in Vietnam, Patton, who frequently used helicopters as a mobile command post, was shot down no less than three times and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. After Vietnam, he was promoted to Brigadier General in June 1970 before becoming the commanding officer of the U.S. 2nd Armored Division, a unit his father had commanded in North Africa during World War II, making this the first time in U.S. Army history that a father and a son had both commanded the same division. The Abramses were the second to accomplish this feat. Brigadier General Patton was Deputy Post Commander at Fort Knox, Kentucky during 1972. Patton was known by the troops as a “GI General,” often appearing in A-2-3 Dining Hall during meal times. Often the general would be behind the serving line. Major General Patton was assigned to the VII Corps in Germany, as the Deputy Commander. He was stationed near Stuttgart,

where Manfred Rommel,

     son of Field Marshal of the Panzertroops, Erwin Rommel, was mayor of the city at the time. The sons of the two former adversaries entered a much publicized friendship, which continued until the General’s death on 27-06-2004, age 79. The men shared the same birthday, December 24. During his tour in Germany, General Patton caused commanders to take equal opportunity seriously when he stated with characteristic frankness that (paraphrased), “Anyone in my command who thinks he has no race relations problem is a lying son-of-a-bitch.”

Death and burial ground of Patton, George Smith Jr.

George Patton who was married with Joanne Patton is buried on Arlington Cemetery, Section 34. Close by the graves of Major General on the Pacific Theatre, Spencer Akin and Air Force General, Commanding General U.S. Army Forces, Henry “Happy” Arnold and Major General, Commander 1st Infantry Division, James Collins.

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