Gen. George "Old Blood and Guts" Patton Dies

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by RightHand, Dec 21, 2005.


  1. RightHand

    RightHand Pioneer in a New World Moderator Founding Member

    On this day, General George S. Patton, commander of the U.S. 3rd Army, dies from injuries suffered not in battle but in a freak car accident. He was 60 years old.

    Descended from a long line of military men, Patton graduated from the West Point Military Academy in 1909. He represented the United States in the 1912 Olympics-as the first American participant in the pentathlon. He did not win a medal. He went on to serve in the Tank Corps during World War I, an experience that made Patton a dedicated proponent of tank warfare.

    During World War II, as commander of the U.S. 7th Army, he captured Palermo, Sicily, in 1943 by just such means. Patton's audacity became evident in 1944, when, during the Battle of the Bulge, he employed an unorthodox strategy that involved a 90-degree pivoting move of his 3rd Army forces, enabling him to speedily relieve the besieged Allied defenders of Bastogne, Belgium.

    Along the way, Patton's mouth proved as dangerous to his career as the Germans. When he berated and slapped a hospitalized soldier diagnosed with "shell shock," but whom Patton accused of "malingering," the press turned on him, and pressure was applied to cut him down to size. He might have found himself enjoying early retirement had not General Dwight Eisenhower and General George Marshall intervened on his behalf. After several months of inactivity, he was put back to work.

    And work he did-at the Battle of the Bulge, during which Patton once again succeeded in employing a complex and quick-witted strategy, turning the German thrust into Bastogne into an Allied counterthrust, driving the Germans east across the Rhine. In March 1945, Patton's army swept through southern Germany into Czechoslovakia-which he was stopped from capturing by the Allies, out of respect for the Soviets' postwar political plans for Eastern Europe.

    Patton had many gifts, but diplomacy was not one of them. After the war, while stationed in Germany, he criticized the process of denazification, the removal of former Nazi Party members from positions of political, administrative, and governmental power. His impolitic press statements questioning the policy caused Eisenhower to remove him as U.S. commander in Bavaria. He was transferred to the 15th Army Group, but in December of 1945 he suffered a broken neck in a car accident and died less than two weeks later.
     
  2. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    RH?

    My Grandfather served with Patton...Col Redding F Perry...there is mention of him in the book .....I can't remember where..been a while since I read it...near the end as best as I recall.....

    He had some wonderful stories...hilarious stories....You know that so called famous picture of all of them , uh...peeing in the Rhine while the Germans are moving in??

    My dad has that....and it will be mine one day....... :D

    My grandfather was the Chief of Staff of the 2nd Armored Division...."Hell On Wheels" in November of 1943.....

    Now he was a piece of work! Aye Carumba.....we were terrified of him growing up....But he was extremely proud of being "Regular Army"...God forbid you ever leave that out wnen mentioning his rank.......Yikes! :shock:
     
  3. Cousin Jack

    Cousin Jack Knifemaker Founding Member

    My Great Uncle fought with the 45th (Thunderbird Division) at the Battle of the Bulge.
     
  4. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Patton was a great man, and we needed more of them during the 30's and 40's. I never liked the political games that the brass usually plays, and neither did old blood and guts. He knew what his job was, and he always got it done. He performed his duty above and beyond what was ever expected, and he often times saved his own troops lives by being a decisive and aggressive leader. What Patton could get done in a day, other generals would take weeks to perform.

    Men like Patton can only be read about in books and viewed in recreations on television any more.
     
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