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Biography

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Overview (4)

Born in Brooklyn, New York, USA
Died in Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Birth NameJames Maurice Gavin
Nicknames The Jumping General
Jumping Jim
Jim
Slim Jim

Mini Bio (1)

James M. Gavin, grew up in Mount Carmel, Pennsylvania, and ran away from home in his early teen years, never to return. He was commissioned into the Infantry after graduating from the US Military Academy in 1929. Promoted Brigadier General in 1943, he was one of the youngest generals in US Army history since George Armstrong Custer during the American Civil War. Serving in a variety of command and administrative posts after World War II, he become a strong opponent of nuclear war and thus the Eisenhower administration. His policies and concerns resulted in early retirement in 1957 as a lieutenant general. He took a position as Chairman and CEO with the consulting firm Arthur D. Little and Company, where he remained for 20 years, retiring in 1977. President John F. Kennedy selected him to be United States Ambassador to France in 1961, a post he served in until 1963, while officially on leave from Little. His autobiography, On To Berlin, was published in 1979. He died of Parkinson's disease in 1990.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: deecee322@earthlink.net

Trade Mark (1)

Known for carrying an M1 Garand Rifle into battle rather than a traditional sidearm

Trivia (19)

U.S. Ambassador to France (1961-1962).
Commanded the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division in Europe during WWII.
Biography in: "The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives". Volume Two, 1986-1990, pages 321-323. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1999.
At age 35, he was one of the youngest Generals in the U.S. Military during World War II.
Irish-American.
Was adopted by Mary and Martin Gavin in 1909.
Grew up in Mount Carmel, Pennsylvania.
Retired from the Army in 1958 after 34 years.
Had 5 daughters, 10 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren.
Was asked to be Ambassador to France due to his experience with president Charles De Gaulle.
Served as Vice President and later President of Arthur D Little inc from 1958 to 1977. During that time, he transformed it from a 10 million dollar domestic company to a 70 million dollar multinational.
His mother was an immigrant from Ireland.
He was thirty-seven years old when promoted to the rank of Major General and was the youngest man to ever hold the rank.
He served as a military consultant on both The Longest Day (1962) and A Bridge Too Far (1977). He was played by Robert Ryan in the former and Ryan O'Neal in the latter.
A combination of restlessness and limited future opportunities in his hometown caused Gavin to run away from home. In March 1924, on his 17th birthday, he took the night train to New York. The first thing he did upon arriving was to send a telegram to his parents saying everything was all right to prevent them from reporting him missing to the police.
Was the youngest major general to command an American division in World War II, being only thirty-seven upon promotion, and the youngest lieutenant general after the war, in March 1955.
He fought against segregation in the army.
Left school after the eighth grade.
During the war, he was often referred to as "The Jumping General" because of his practice of taking part in combat jumps with the paratroopers under his command; he was the only American general officer to make four combat jumps in the war.

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