Walter M. Robertson

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Walter Melville Robertson
Walter M. Robertson.jpg
Born (1888-06-15)June 15, 1888
Nelson County, Virginia
Died November 22, 1954(1954-11-22) (aged 66)
San Francisco, California
Allegiance United StatesUnited States of America
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1912-1950
Rank US-O8 insignia.svg Major General
Commands held 2nd Infantry Division (United States) 2nd Infantry Division
XV Corps (United States) XV Corps
Battles/wars

World War I
World War II
Cold War

Awards Distinguished Service Cross
Distinguished Service Medal (2)
Silver Star

Walter Melville Robertson[1] (June 15, 1888 – November 22, 1954) was an United States Army officer with the rank of Major General. He received the second highest military award, Distinguished Service Cross, for his leadership as the commander of the 2nd Infantry Division ("Indianhead") during the Battle of the Bulge.[2]

Early military service[edit]

Walter Melville Robertson was born on June 15, 1888 as the son of William Walter Robertson and his wife Mary Fannie (néé Pettit). He attended the Central State Normal School and subsequently the University of Oklahoma, where he took a special work in engineering. Robertson attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York and graduated from this institution on June 12, 1912. He was also commissioned a Second lieutenant in the Infantry at that date.[3]

Many of his West Point classmates later became a general officers during World War II. For example: Wade H. Haislip, John Shirley Wood, Walton Walker, Raymond O. Barton, Harry J. Malony, Gilbert R. Cook, Stephen J. Chamberlin, Archibald V. Arnold, Albert E. Brown, Roscoe C. Crawford, William H. Wilbur, Bradford G. Chynoweth, Robert M. Littlejohn, Sidney P. Spalding, Franklin C. Sibert, Thomas J. Hayes, William G. Weaver, William H. Hobson, John E. Lewis, Davenport Johnson, William J. Morrissey or Millard Harmon.[4]

His first military service was at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, where he stayed until 1915. Then he spent some time in Presidio of San Francisco, before he was transferred to Nogales, Arizona, where he served as officer in charge of training of 800 men and 53 officers for special duty.[5]

He was then transferred to the newly established officer training school at Camp Bullis in Texas, before his departure to the France during World War I in May 1918. After the War, Robertson served with the Occupation Forces in the Germany until 1920.

Life after the War[edit]

In June, 1946, Major general Robertson was transferred to the XV Corps, where he replaced his West Point Classmate, Lieutenant General Wade H. Haislip, as a corps commander. He served with the XV Corps as the part of Occupation forces in Austria and then in Germany. In March 1946, XV Corps was inactivated and Robertson was appointed a Head of US Delegation Allied Control Commission for Bulgaria. He stayed there until September 1947, where he was appointed a Deputy Commander of the Sixth United States Army under the command of Mark W. Clark. He was retired from this Command on June 30, 1950.[6]

After the retirement from the Army, Robertson was appointed a California State Director of Civil Defense with the seat in Sacramento. He served in this capacity until November 22, 1954, when he suddenly died at the age of 66 years. His resting place is at Arlington National Cemetery together with his wife Lorene Powell Crebs (1891-1964).[7]

Decorations[edit]

Here is Major general Robertson´s ribbon bar:

Bronze oak leaf cluster
Fourragère CG.png
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
1st Row Distinguished Service Cross Army Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster Silver Star Fourragère
2nd Row Legion of Merit Bronze Star Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster World War I Victory Medal with three Battle Clasps Army of Occupation of Germany Medal
3rd Row American Defense Service Medal American Campaign Medal European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with five service stars World War II Victory Medal
4th Row Army of Occupation Medal National Defense Service Medal Honorary Companion of the Order of the Bath (United Kingdom) Officer of the Legion of Honor (France)
5th Row French Croix de guerre 1939-1945 with Palm Czechoslovak Order of the White Lion, 3rd Class Czechoslovak War Cross 1939-1945 Soviet Order of the Patriotic War, 1st Class

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Biography of Major General Walter Melville Robertson (1888 - 1954)". generals.dk. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  2. ^ "Valor awards for Walter Melville Robertson". militarytimes.com. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  3. ^ "World War II Unit Histories & Officers". unithistories.com. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  4. ^ "United States Military Academy, Class of 1912" (PDF). digital-library.usma.edu. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  5. ^ "Gen Walter Melville Robertson (1888 - 1954) - Find a Grave Memorial". Findagrave.com. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  6. ^ "World War II Unit Histories & Officers". unithistories.com. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  7. ^ "Gen Walter Melville Robertson (1888 - 1954) - Find a Grave Memorial". Findagrave.com. 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
Military offices
Preceded by
John C. H. Lee
General Officer Commanding 2nd Infantry Division
May, 1942 – June, 1945
Succeeded by
William K. Harrison