My Uncle Jim

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  • Published: December 2004
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 154
  • Size: 8.25x10.75
  • ISBN: 9781412008280
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Jim Van Fleet was made commander of all the forces in Korea after MacArthur and Ridgeway. He invented the "Van Fleet Load', four to five times the basic load of ammunition fired in one day. He used ammunition instead of killing HIS soldiers. Few commanders in U.S. history had the combat experience that he did when he arrived in Korea.

Graduating from West Point in 1915, soon he and his friend "Georgie" Patton helped "Blackjack" Pershing chase Pancho Villa around Mexico. Then came World War I under Pershing again. Between world wars he coached football and taught ROTC at several colleges. World War II found him under Patton, Bradley, and Eisenhower, all old friends, where all three commended his leadership and performance. Later he was sent to Greece to advise them how to beat terrorists, which they did without one American being killed. He was sent to Korea and as much as he was allowed, he won that war. He started the Korean "West Point", trained the ROK's to be the outstanding fighters they became and started the Korean Service Corps where Korean men carried on their backs food, supplies and wounded to and from the battle lines. He greatly admired the tenacity of the Korean soldiers and loved and admired their leader, Syngman Rhee.

General Van Fleet was raised as a very poor boy in Central Florida. He received an appointment to West Point and graduated in the class of 1915, "the class the stars fell on" with Eisenhower and Bradley. He played football only in his last year and the New York Herald Tribune had as its headline after the last game of the season Navy 0 Van Fleet 20 a game long remembered in West Point football history. Him played fullback. He later coached the University of Florida football in 1923 to 1924 where his scores were the highest for over 60 years. He often compared coaching football to commanding troops.

After retirement from the service, he was made a roving ambassador. Later he was on the board for 20th Century Fox, Reynolds Aluminum, and others. Home now was Central Florida again - probably the spot he loved best in all the world. He is loved admired, and remembered in Central Florida, in Korea, Greece, Glouster England, and many other places, and by his family and friends.

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