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Gen Alfred Maximilian Gruenther

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Gen Alfred Maximilian Gruenther

Birth
Platte Center, Platte County, Nebraska, USA
Death 30 May 1983 (aged 84)
Washington, District of Columbia, District of Columbia, USA
Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Plot Section 7, Site 8202-B, near General George Marshall
Memorial ID 6634035 View Source
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US Army General. A combat veteran of World War II, he rose in rank to become the Commander-in Chief US European Command and Supreme Allied Commander in Europe from 1953 until 1956. After graduating from St. Thomas Academy in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1914, he received an appointment to attend the US Military Academy at West Point, New York and graduated in 1918 with a commission as a 2nd lieutenant of Artillery. He served in various stateside assignments and at Camp Stotsenburg, Philippines before becoming an instructor in the Department of Chemistry at West Point in August 1927 and remained there until 1932 when he attended the US Chemical Warfare School. Following another stateside assignment to Fort Hoyle, Maryland, he returned to West Point in July 1934 as the assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Electricity. From September 1936 until June 1937 he attended the US Army Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas and returned to West Point for a third time as assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Electricity. In September 1938 he attended the US Army War College at Washington Barracks and the following year was assigned to Fort Sam Houston, Texas as commander of the 3rd Battalion of the 15th Field Artillery. Promoted to the rank of colonel in 1941, he became the Deputy Chief of Staff, 3rd Army at Fort Sam Houston and in December of that year, he was promoted to the rank of brigadier general and became 3rd Army Chief of Staff. During World War II he was sent to North Africa in January 1943 and became Chief of Staff, US 5th Army and was promoted to the rank of major general. During the Italian Campaign, he became Chief of Staff for the 15th Army Group in December 1944 until July 1945 when he became Deputy Commander-in-Chief of US Forces in Austria. In December 1945 he returned to the US and served as Deputy Commandant of the National War College at Fort McNair, Washington DC. In September 1947 he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant general and performed three tours at the Pentagon in Washington DC, first as Director of the Joint Staff in the Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (September 1947 until September 1949), then as the US Army Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Combat Operations (September 1949 until February 1950), and finally Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans (March 1950 until February 1951). In August 1951 he was promoted to the rank of general and became the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe at Fontainebleau, France, followed in July 1953 as Commander-in-Chief US European Command and Supreme Allied Commander Europe, and he retired in that position in November 1956 with 37 years of continuous military service. Among his military and foreign decorations and awards include the Army Distinguished Service Medal (with two oak leaf clusters), the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, the World War I Victory Medal, the American Defense Service Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal (with seven service stars and arrowhead device), the World War II Victory Medal, the Army of Occupation Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Belgian Order of Leopold (knight) and Belgian Cross of War (with palm), the Brazilian Order of Military Merit, the British Order of the Bath, the Czechoslovakian War Cross (1939-1945), the French Legion of Honor, Medaille Militaire, and Croix de Guerre (with palm), the Italian Order of the Crown, Military Order, and Medal of Valor, the Moroccan Order of Ouissam Alaouite (grand officer), the Polish Vistuti Militari, and the Order of Malta. After his military retirement, he served as president of the American Red Cross from January 1957 until March 1964 and was Chairman of the English Speaking Union of the US from 1966 until 1968. He received numerous honorary degrees from American colleges and universities, including a Doctorate of Letters from Bates College at Lewiston, Maine in 1958. He died from pneumonia at the age of 84.

Bio by: William Bjornstad


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bill Heneage
  • Added: 24 Jul 2002
  • Find a Grave Memorial 6634035
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/6634035/alfred-maximilian-gruenther : accessed ), memorial page for Gen Alfred Maximilian Gruenther (3 Mar 1899–30 May 1983), Find a Grave Memorial ID 6634035, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .