Thomas Troy Handy

Thomas Troy Handy

Spring City, Rhea County, Tennessee, USA
Death 14 Apr 1982 (aged 90)
San Antonio, Bexar County, Texas, USA
Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Plot Section 30, Lot 394 RH
Memorial ID 6577593 · View Source
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US Army General. A veteran of World Wars I and II, he rose in rank to become the Commander-in-Chief of US Army Europe/Commander, Central Army Group and Deputy Commander-in-Chief of US European Command. The son of a Methodist minister, after completing high school he attended the Virginia Military Institute at Lexington, Virginia and graduated in 1914. Two years later he received a 2nd lieutenant's commission in the US Army Field Artillery. Following the US entry into World War I he was sent to France with the 5th Field Artillery Regiment in August 1917 and later served with the 42nd Infantry "Rainbow" Division and the 151st Field Artillery Regiment, and saw combat action at Chateau-Thierry and in the Argonne. In 1919 he returned to the US and was assigned to Fort Sill, Oklahoma. From 1921 until 1925 he was a mathematics instructor at the Virginia Military Institute and following that assignment, he attended the Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, Texas. For the next three years he served in various staff assignments before returning to Fort Sill as an instructor at the US Army Field Artillery School. In 1934 he attended the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania and was then assigned to the US Army Headquarters Staff at Washington DC, sandwiched around a one-year tour as commander of the 78th Field Artillery Battalion at Fort Benning, Georgia. In December 1941, following the US Entry into World War II, he was promoted to the rank of temporary brigadier general, followed in June 1942 by a promotion to temporary major general and became the Assistant Chief of Staff, Operations Division, replacing General Dwight D. Eisenhower. In September 1944 he was promoted to the rank of temporary lieutenant general and the following month he became Deputy Chief of Staff of the Army in Washington DC, and was promoted to the rank of general in March 1945. The following August 1945 he became acting Chief of Staff, due to General George C. Marshall's absence, and transmitted the order for use of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. In September 1947 be was named as Commander of the 4th US Army at Fort Sam Houston, Texas and two years later he returned to Europe as Commander-in-Chief of US European Command. In 1952 he became the Deputy Commander-in-Chief of US European Command and retired at this position in 1954 with 38 years of continuous military service. Among his military and foreign decorations and awards include the Distinguished Service Cross, the Army Distinguished Service Medal (with two oak leaf clusters), the Legion of Merit, the World War I Victory Medal (with four gold award stars), the post-World War I Army of Occupation of Germany Medal, the American Defense Service Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal (with four service stars), the World War II Victory Medal, the post-World War II Army of Occupation Medal, the French Croix de Guerre (with gilt star), the French Legion de Honneur (commander), the Belgian Croix de Guerre, the Belgian Cross of the Order of Leopold, the Chinese Grand Cordon of the Order of the Cloud and Banner (Yun-Hui), the Ecuadorian Order of Abdon Calderon Star, and the Honorary Knight, Order of the British Empire. Following his military retirement, he worked for a Defense Department consulting firm in Washington DC for 15 years and then moved to San Antonio, Texas. He died following a long illness at the age of 90.

Bio by: William Bjornstad

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bill Heneage
  • Added: 5 Jul 2002
  • Find a Grave Memorial 6577593
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Thomas Troy Handy (10 Mar 1892–14 Apr 1982), Find a Grave Memorial no. 6577593, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .