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First Name: John

Last Name: Norton

Birthplace: Fort Monroe, VA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Date of Birth: 1918

Date of Death: 06 December 2004

Rank: Lieutenant General

Years Served:
John Norton

Graduate, U.S. Military Academy, Class of 1941

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)
•  Vietnam War (1960 - 1973)


John "Jack" Norton
Lieutenant General, U.S. Army

John "Jack" Norton was born in 1918 in Fort Monroe, VA.

Norton was a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy Class of 1941, who became a World War II paratrooper with the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the famed 82nd Airborne Division and jumped behind German lines into the French village of St. Mere-Eglise on D-Day. He also participated in the Battle of the Bulge and saw combat in Sicily, Italy, Belgium and Germany.

He assisted Army General James M. Gavin in developing policies for coordination of airborne activities with the newly formed Air Force in the late 1940s. Norton had a major role in shaping Aviation within the Army via the Howze Board, headed by Lt. Gen. Hamilton Howze, of which he was a member in 1962. The Howze Board devised the Army's modern doctrine of airpower use in wartime and outlined the future use of helicopters in combat. When Norton became Commanding General of the Army's 1st Cavalry Division in Vietnam in 1966, he put into practice the air cavalry recommendations he had helped frame four years before.

From 1970-73, he was Commanding General of the Combat Development Command at Fort Belvoir, VA, overseeing the development and initial production of the Black Hawk helicopter and the M1 Abrams main battle tank. His final assignment was Chief of Staff, NATO Allied Forces Southern Europe in Naples, Italy, from 1973-75. He retired in 1975.

Medals and Awards

Distinguished Service Medal (4 Awards)
Silver Star Medal
Legion of Merit (4 Awards)
Bronze Star Medal (2 Awards)
Air Medal


Combat Infantryman Badge
Parachutist Badge


• Member of the Army Aviation Hall of Fame

• Member of the Army Field Experimentation Hall of Fame

Death and Burial

Lieutenant General John "Jack" Norton died on 6 December 2004 in Basye, VA. He is buried at the U.S. Military Academy Post Cemetery at West Point, NY.

Honoree ID: 2912   Created by: MHOH




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