John Eisenhower

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The Honorable1
John Eisenhower
Eisenhower on-board the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1990
45th United States Ambassador to Belgium
In office
May 14, 1969 – September 28, 1971
President Richard Nixon
Preceded by Ridgway Knight
Succeeded by Robert Strausz-Hupe
Personal details
Born (1922-08-03)August 3, 1922
Denver, Colorado
Died December 21, 2013(2013-12-21) (aged 91)
Trappe, Maryland
Nationality American
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Barbara Thompson
(m. 1947; div. 1986)
Joanne Thompson
(m. 1988-2013, his death)
Relations Dwight Eisenhower
(father)
Mamie Eisenhower
(mother)
Doud Eisenhower
(brother)
Children David Eisenhower II
(son)
Anne Eisenhower
(daughter)
Susan Eisenhower
(daughter)
Mary Eisenhower
(daughter)
Alma mater United States Military Academy,
Columbia University,
United States Army Command and General Staff College
Profession Army officer, military historian, diplomat
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1944–1963 (active)
1963–1974 (reserve)
Rank US-O7 insignia.svg Brigadier General
Commands
Battles/wars World War II
Korean War
Awards Bronze Star Medal
Combat Infantryman Badge
See more

John Sheldon Doud Eisenhower (August 3, 1922 – December 21, 2013) was a United States Army general and military historian who served as the United States Ambassador to Belgium from 1969 to 1971.

Early life and education

John Eisenhower was born on August 3, 1922 in Denver, Denver County, Colorado to future U.S. President and United States Army General of the Army Dwight D. Eisenhower and his wife, Mamie. John Eisenhower was the second child of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower. Their first son, Doud Dwight, known affectionately as "Icky", died in 1921, at age 3, after contracting scarlet fever. John Eisenhower, like his father, attended the United States Military Academy, graduating on June 6, 1944, the day of the Normandy landings, which his father was commanding.

Career

Eisenhower served in the U.S. Army during World War II and the Korean War, remaining on active duty until 1963; then serving in the U.S. Army Reserve until retirement in 1975 – attaining the rank of brigadier general.2 A decorated soldier, Eisenhower found his World War II military career thwarted by fears for his safety and concern from the top brass that his death or capture would be a distraction to his father, the Supreme Allied Commander. This issue arose again in 1952 when Major Eisenhower was assigned to fight in a combat unit in Korea while his father ran for President. After a short stint in combat with an infantry battalion, he was reassigned to the safety of division headquarters. In 2008, he wrote about this experience in an opinion piece in The New York Times entitled "Presidential Children Don’t Belong in Battle".3

During his father's presidency, John Eisenhower served as Assistant Staff Secretary in the White House, on the Army's General Staff, and in the White House as assistant to General Andrew Goodpaster.

In the administration of President Richard Nixon, who had been his father's Vice President, he served as U.S. Ambassador to Belgium. In 1972, President Nixon appointed Eisenhower Chairman of the Interagency Classification Review Committee.4 In 1975, he served President Gerald Ford as chairman of the President's Advisory Committee on Refugees.5

Marriage and children

Eisenhower married Barbara Jean Thompson on June 10, 1947. They divorced in 1986. The Eisenhowers had four children: a son, Dwight David, II (b. March 31, 1948, West Point, NY), who married Julie Nixon, herself a presidential daughter; and three daughters Barbara Anne Eisenhower (b. May 30, 1949, West Point, NY), Susan Eisenhower (b. December 31, 1951, Fort Knox, KY) and Mary Jean Eisenhower (b. December 21, 1955, Washington, DC). In 1988, Eisenhower married Joanne Thompson. He lived in Trappe, Maryland, after moving there from Kimberton, Pennsylvania.6

Later life and death

A lifelong Republican, Eisenhower voted for Democrat John Kerry in the 2004 Presidential election, citing dissatisfaction with Republican incumbent George W. Bush's management of U.S. foreign policy.7 In later years, he had been an opponent of Frank Gehry's proposed design for the National Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial, which he said was "too extravagant" and "attempts to do too much."8

He died at Trappe, Maryland on December 21, 2013.9 From the death of John Coolidge in 2000 until his own death on December 21, 2013, Eisenhower was the oldest living presidential child.10

Writing

As a military historian, Eisenhower wrote several books, including The Bitter Woods, a study of the Battle of the Bulge, and So Far from God, a history of the U.S.-Mexican War. In a New York Times review of the latter, historian Stephen W. Sears remarked that Eisenhower "writes briskly and authoritatively, and his judgments are worth reading."11 John Eisenhower also wrote the forewords to Borrowed Soldiers, by Mitchell Yockelson of the U.S. National Archives, and to Kenneth W. Rendell's Politics, War and Personality: 50 Iconic Documents of World War II.

Bibliography

Awards and decorations

U.S. military decorations
Bronze Star Medal
U.S. service medals
American Defense Service Medal
American Campaign Medal
Bronze star
Bronze star
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal w/ 2 bronze service stars
World War II Victory Medal
Army of Occupation Medal w/ "Germany" Clasp
National Defense Service Medal
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Korean Service Medal w/ 3 bronze service stars
Foreign unit awards
Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation
Non-U.S. service awards
United Nations Service Medal
Republic of Korea War Service Medal
U.S. Army badges
Combat Infantry Badge.svg Combat Infantryman Badge
USAAF - Glider Pilot 4.png Glider Badge

Other honors

The city of Marshfield, Missouri chose Eisenhower as a 2008 honoree of the Edwin P. Hubble Medal of Initiative.12 His grandson, Merrill Eisenhower Atwater spoke on his behalf at Marshfield's annual Cherry Blossom Festival. The medal recognizes individuals who demonstrate great initiative in their chosen field.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ McCaffree 1997, pp. 86-87.
  2. ^ "John Sheldon Doud Eisenhower". Internet Accuracy Project. 
  3. ^ Eisenhower, John (September 27, 2008). "Presidential Children Don’t Belong in Battle". The New York Times. Retrieved September 28, 2008. 
  4. ^ "History of the Information Security Oversight Office". www.archives.gov. The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  5. ^ Woolley, John T.; Gerhard Peters. "Remarks Upon Establishing the President's Advisory Committee on Refugees". The American Presidency Project. Santa Barbara, California: University of California. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  6. ^ "John Sheldon Doud Eisenhower". Internet Accuracy Project. Retrieved November 26, 2012. 
  7. ^ Eisenhower, John (September 28, 2004). "Why I Will Vote for John Kerry for President". The Manchester Union Leader. Retrieved 2007-05-19. 
  8. ^ Zongker, Brett (November 16, 2013). "Eisenhower Memorial Approval Delayed Into 2013". Associated Press. 
  9. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2013/12/21/us/politics/ap-us-obit-eisenhower.html?ref=aponline&_r=0
  10. ^ "Former President John Tyler's (1790–1862) grandchildren still alive". January 25, 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-25.  If Elizabeth Ann Blaesing was actually Warren Harding's daughter, she would have been the oldest surviving presidential child from 1995 to her death in 2005, at which point John Eisenhower would have become the oldest.
  11. ^ Stephen W. Sears (April 2, 1989). "LAND GRAB ON THE RIO GRANDE". New York Times. 
  12. ^ "Hubble Medal of Initiative." Marshfield Missouri Cherry Blossom Festival. Retrieved March 4, 2011.

References

  • Eisenhower, John S. D. (1974). Strictly Personal (1st ed.). Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday. ISBN 0-385-07071-3. 
  • McCaffree, Mary Jane; Innis, Pauline (1997). Protocol: The Complete Handbook of Diplomatic, Official and Social Usage (4th ed.). Washington: Devon. ISBN 0-941402-04-5. 

External links








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