Born on November 11, 1885 in San Gabriel, California, Patton descended from military stock and dreamed of making his mark on the battlefield. He attended the Virginia Military Institute and graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point on June 11, 1909.
Patton's passion for armor was evident from the early days of tank warfare. Patton was the first member of the United States Tank Corps in 1917 (it was abolished in 1920). Patton went on to organize the American tank school in Bourg, France. Patton's Armor corps achieved victory at the first major American offensive of WWI at St. Mihiel in September 1918, working alongside the British. He led a brigade into the Meuse-Argonne operation in late September 1918, where he was shot once in the leg while he was directing tanks, earning him the Distinguished Service Cross for Heroism.
He continued to distinguish himself in World War II where he commanded
a corps in North Africa and the Seventh Army in Sicily. His crowning achievement
was his command of the Third Army, which swept across Europe, covering
600 miles across France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia.
By the time WWII was over, the Third Army had liberated or conquered 81,522
square miles of territory.
Soldier, liberator, leader, General George S. Patton's accomplishments were many
and his legacy is lasting.