Van Fleet, James

Van Fleet, James (Alward)

(1892–1992) soldier; born in Coytesville, N.J. A West Point graduate (1915), during World War I he commanded a machine gun battalion in France, and in World War II he held successively higher commands, culminating with that of the Third Corps. In 1948–50 he was in Greece to train and equip the Greeks fighting the Communist forces there. From 1951–53, he served in Korea, commanding the U.S. Eighth Army during the grueling period of hard fighting for little gain while the armistice talks dragged on. Although he retired in 1953, he was recalled to active duty in 1961–62 to help train U.S. Army guerrilla fighters. He then lived a quiet life to reach the age of 100.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.