DePuy, William E.

1979 ALS while retired General, led “Big Red One” in Vietnam, noted for firing 56 officers who did not measure up

Price: $35.00

Description:
(1919-1992) US Army general, 1st commander of the Army Training and Doctrine Command, regarded as one of the principal architects of the restructuring of Army doctrine after US withdrawal from Vietnam. Enlisted in the South Dakota National Guard, received a commission as a 2nd lieutenant in the Infantry in 1941. DePuy was assigned in 1942 as a "green" lieutenant to the new 90th Infantry Division, given field to major commanding a battalion during the Normandy campaign in August 1944, at 24. He served with the 90th in the fierce fighting from Utah Beach thru the Battle of the Bulge, receiving his 1st Distinguished Service Cross and 3 Silver Stars. He was an operations officer at division level, promoted to Lt. Col. Jan. 1945. After the War, DePuy served in myriad command and staff positions. First deployed to Vietnam in 1964, he served as Chief of Staff of Operations for MACV and in March 1966 took command of the 1st Infantry Div. ("the Big Red One"). While commander, he set up a scholarship fund for children of Division soldiers killed in Vietnam, later the 1st Infantry Division Fdn. As commander, he had an "ax-swinging" style of officer management, firing 56 officers under him including 7 battalion commanders and many more majors, captains and sergeants major. He firmly believed that command was a privilege to be earned, not a right. DePuy is best remembered for leading the US Army Training and Doctrine Command where he helped create a new, innovative fighting doctrine for the Army. His wide-ranging and sometimes controversial changes in combat development and the way the Army trains sparked a debate that resulted in the widely accepted “Airland Battle Doctrine.” General DePuy retired from active duty in July 1977. His awards included 2 DSCs. ALS on 8 ˝ x 7 4-star letterhead, No. Virginia, January 29 1979, to “Dee” (Major General DeWitt C. Smith Jr., Commandant, Army War College), is happy to participate in the AWC Oral History program, gives telephone for Col. Shaw, Smith’s aide, to reach him, sends best wishes. With hand-addressed envelope. DeWITT C. SMITH,JR. (1920 -1985) US Army officer, former deputy Army Chief of Staff, twice (and longest-serving) Army War College commandant 1974 -77, 1978-80. In 1942, he joined the Army, commissioned a 2nd lieutenant, served with the 4th Armored Div. in combat after Normandy to the end of the War. Wounded 3 times, he was awarded the Silver Star, 2 Bronze Stars, and 3 Purple Hearts. Discharged 1946, he returned to active duty in Korea and stayed in the military. He was an aide to Chief of Staff Maxwell Taylor, served in the "Old Guard" at Fort Myer, and was a battalion XO and commander in Germany. He served at the Pentagon before going to the Army War College. He led a combat brigade of the 1st Infantry in Vietnam. In 1970, under his leadership, Fort Carson, Colo. was made an initial test site for the modern volunteer Army concept. After his stints at the War College, he retired in 1980.

Condition: Very good, faint clip stain at top left
Type:Letter






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