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First Name: Alfred

Last Name: Gruenther

Birthplace: Platte Center, NE, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Middle Name: Maximilian

Date of Birth: 03 March 1899

Date of Death: 30 May 1983

Rank: General

Years Served: 1919 - 1956
Alfred Maximilian Gruenther

Graduate, U.S. Military Academy, Class of 1918

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Alfred Maximilian Gruenther
General, U.S. Army

Alfred Maximilian Gruenther was born on 3 March 1899 in Platte Center, NE. He attended St. Thomas Academy in Saint Paul, MN. At the U.S. Military Academy he graduated fourth in the Class of 1918.

World War II Assignments

He was an advisor, planner and staff officer to top generals in World War II as shown by this list of assignments:

1941 Deputy Chief of Staff 3rd Army

1941-42 Chief of Staff 3rd Army

1942-43 Deputy Chief of Staff Allied Expeditionary Force

1943-44 Chief of Staff 5th Army, Italy

1944-45 Chief of Staff 15th Army Group, Italy

He was a principal American planner of the allied invasions of North Africa in 1942 and Italy in 1943.

Post-World War II Assignments

After World War II, he continued to serve in key assignments:

1945 Deputy Commanding General US Forces in Austria

1946-47 Deputy Commandant National War College

1947-49 Director of the Joint Staff

1949-50 Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans & Combat Operations US Army

1950-51 Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans US Army

1950-53 Chief of Staff Supreme Headquarter Allied Powers Europe

1953-56 Supreme Commander NATO Europe (As a four-star General)

General Gruenther retired from military service in 1956.


After retiring from the Army, he served as president of the American Red Cross from 1957 to 1964. He was also a member of the Draper Committee (the Presidents Committee to Study the United States Military Assistance Program).

Medals and Awards

As a staff officer, Gruenther was the recipient of many medals from the U.S. and other nations, including the Distinguished Service Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters.


Gruenther appeared on the cover of Time Magazine, on 6 February 1956.

On 10 February 1957, he appeared as a guest on the successful TV quiz show What's My Line.

Gruenther received a Litt.D. from Bates College in 1958.

Death and Burial

General Alfred Maximilian Gruenther died on 30 May 1983. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA, in Section 7 near General George Marshall.

Honoree ID: 239   Created by: MHOH




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