James M. Gavin
Recipient of the Purple Heart medal
James M. Gavin
James Maurice "Jumpin' Jim" Gavin was a prominent Lieutenant General in the United States Army during World War II. He was also referred to as "The Jumping General", because of his practice of taking part in combat drops with the paratroopers whom he commanded. In his mid-30s at the time, Gavin was the youngest U.S. Major General commanding a division during World War II.
Biography
James M. Gavin's personal information overview.
{{personal_detail.supertitle}}
{{personal_detail.title}}
{{personal_detail.title}}
Photo Albums
Popular photos of James M. Gavin
Relationships
View family, career and love interests for James M. Gavin
Show More Show Less
News
News abour James M. Gavin from around the web
The new she is he - Chicago Tribune
Google News - over 5 years
I see it in the school district where I work. Girls punching boys — punching them hard, sometimes out of meanness, sometimes for fun, but still packing a wallop. It's been increasing in recent times, with situation comedies either
Article Link:
Google News article
Friday's Geek asks, Where's my submarine aircraft carrier? - Kings of War
Google News - over 5 years
As it happens I really like James Gavin. A few years ago in a used bookstore I found a signed copy of his War and Peace in the Space Age (the 1959 British version with an introduction by General Brian Horrocks). It's an interesting and still a
Article Link:
Google News article
Chet Baker: In New York - PopMatters
Google News - over 5 years
Or, as James Gavin put it in Deep in a Dream: The Long Night of Chet Baker: “Baker played so little on the record, and so weakly, that only the title made it clear who the star was”. Though his tone is admittedly nothing special (especially compared to
Article Link:
Google News article
St. Peter's Health Partners names leadership team - Bizjournals.com
Google News - over 5 years
James Gavin, executive vice president, chief financial officer/treasurer. He is currently CFO/treasurer at St. Peter's • Thomas Schuhle, executive vice president, business development/analytics. He is currently CFO and executive vice president at
Article Link:
Google News article
Oil production grows as Kurds hit the on-switch - Petroleum Economist
Google News - over 5 years
Once domestic gas needs are sorted, it plans to export excess volumes to Turkey and Europe. With plans to become a regional energy hub by the middle of the decade, Kurdistan expects up to $30 billion-worth of projects to be under way. James Gavin
Article Link:
Google News article
Syria: oil sanctions on the horizon - Petroleum Economist
Google News - over 5 years
... flight suggest some are voting with their wallet, but for now at least, Assad can count on the loyalty of Syria's business elite – and buy itself time as it seeks to crush an opposition that still shows no sign of petering out. James Gavin, London
Article Link:
Google News article
Clouding Gulf Markets - Zawya (subscription)
Google News - over 5 years
Middle East unrest has been predictably messy for Gulf investors. Despite improving fundamentals, the region's stock markets continue to trade well below their peak Gulf capital markets must confront a stark dichotomy in 2011
Article Link:
Google News article
Opt pahare de apă pe zi vă menţin glicemia în limite normale - Romania Libera
Google News - over 5 years
Acestea prezintă un risc crescut de a face diabet şi aterosclerpză", afirmă James Gavin profesor la Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta. Următorul pas ar trebui să fie un alt studiu care să includă persoane care nu consumă multă apă,
Article Link:
Google News article
Third charge for drink driver - Northern Advocate
Google News - over 5 years
John James GAVIN, 24, 461mcg, 100 hours' community work, disqualified from driving for six months. William Thomas BOYLE, 58, unemployed, $500 fine, $132 court costs, disqualified from driving for six months. Marlene Martha RIKA, 38, 133 milligrams of
Article Link:
Google News article
Lansing High School: Class of 2011 - Ithaca Journal
Google News - over 5 years
... Cassandra Lynn Palladino, Andrea Krisztina Payton, Howard A. Peters IV, Lindsay Anne Petry, Casey Elizabeth Phelgar, Courtney Pollack, Amy Kathleen Rice, James Gavin Robertson, Alexandra Rebecca Robinson, Christopher Lambert Rogers, Morgan Rolley,
Article Link:
Google News article
UCO Broadway Tonight season tickets on sale - NewsOK.com
Google News - over 5 years
The production is set for Thursday, April 19, and includes live narrative from author James Gavin, vocals from Wilson and film footage from Horne's career. To buy season tickets, call the Broadway Tonight office at 974-2609. Single tickets go on sale
Article Link:
Google News article
Mark Duffield: Hands up if you can't win flag - The West Australian
Google News - over 5 years
They had Kane Cornes, Roger James, Gavin Wanganeen, Byron Pickett, Peter and Shaun Burgoyne, Adam Kingsley, Dom Cassisi, Damien Hardwick, Stuart Dew, Josh Carr, Byron Pickett and Jarrad Schofield to rearrange as required to fill the hole left midfield
Article Link:
Google News article
D-Day remembered at the Palm Springs Air Museum - The Desert Sun
Google News - over 5 years
James Gavin, the youngest commander-general during World War II. The air museum's C-47 will be available for inside tours. The Palm Springs Air Museum is at 745 N. Gene Autry Trail, Palm Springs. The event is included with regular admission to the
Article Link:
Google News article
The Johnny Mercer Foundation Celebrated Margaret Whiting in an Afternoon of ... - Times Square Chronicles
Google News - over 5 years
Author James Gavin, knew Maggie and showed an old album she recorded and subsequently signed for him, “Margaret Whiting sings Rodgers and Hart.” Recalling seeing 4Girls4 at The Westchester Theatre, she was one of his first interviews. In her last days,
Article Link:
Google News article
Columbiana County Municipal Court for 6-1 - The Review
Google News - over 5 years
James Gavin Jr., 24, Warren, pleaded not guilty to OVI first offense and no operator's license; pretrial July 11. Lucas Kenney, 24, Millrock Road, Rogers, pleaded not guilty to aggravated menacing and assault. Bond was set at $1000; pretrial June 6
Article Link:
Google News article
Literatura sobre jazz en castellano - Revista Ñ
Google News - almost 6 years
Juan Manuel Ibeas; Buenos Aires, DeBolsillo, 2007), de James Gavin, Miles. La autobiografía (trad. de Jordi Gubert Ribalta; Barcelona, Alba, 2009), de Miles Davis y Quincy Troupe, que es una reedición del libro publicado por Ediciones B. Por supuesto
Article Link:
Google News article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of James M. Gavin
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 1990
    Age 82
    James Gavin died on February 23, 1990 and is buried to the immediate East of the Old Chapel at the United States Military Academy Post Cemetery at West Point.
    More Details Hide Details He was survived by his widow, Jean, his five daughters, ten grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
  • 1986
    Age 78
    In 1986, the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment created the "Gavin Squad Competition".
    More Details Hide Details This competition was designed to identify the most proficient rifle squad in the regiment. The original competition was won by a squad from 1st Platoon, Bravo Company, 3/505th PIR. Gavin was on hand to award the nine man squad their trophy. The competition is still held every year if the wartime deployment schedule allows it. Robert Frederick Dean C. Strother
  • 1983
    Age 75
    This practice has continued to and with present-day U.S. airborne units; for example, during Operation Urgent Fury in 1983, the commanding officer of the 1st Battalion of a U.S. Army Rangers unit, was the first man out the door of an airplane.
    More Details Hide Details After months of training, Gavin had the regiment tested one last time: As we neared our time to leave, on the way to war, I had an exercise that required them to leave our barracks area at 7:00 P.M. and march all night to an area near the town of Cottonwood, Alabama, a march about 23 miles. There we maneuvered all day and in effect we seized and held an airhead. We broke up the exercise about 8:00 P.M. and started the troopers back by another route through dense pine forest, by way of backwoods roads. About 11:00 P.M., we went into bivouac. After about one hour's sleep, the troopers were awakened to resume the march. In 36 hours the regiment had marched well over 50 miles, maneuvered and seized an airhead and defended it from counterattack while carrying full combat loads and living off reserve rations.
  • 1977
    Age 69
    In 1977, President Jimmy Carter considered the 70-year-old Gavin for Director of the CIA before settling on Admiral Stansfield Turner.
    More Details Hide Details General Gavin was portrayed by Robert Ryan in The Longest Day, and by Ryan O'Neal in A Bridge Too Far. Gavin served as an advisor on both films.
  • 1975
    Age 67
    In 1975, American Electric Power completed the 2600-megawatt General James M. Gavin Power Plant on the Ohio River, near Cheshire, Ohio.
    More Details Hide Details The plant boasts dual stacks of 830 feet and dual cooling towers of 430 feet. It is the largest coal-fired power facility in Ohio, and one of the largest in the nation.
  • FIFTIES
  • 1961
    Age 53
    This proved to be a successful strategy and Gavin served as Ambassador to France in 1961 and 1962.
    More Details Hide Details
    In 1961, U.S. President John F. Kennedy asked Gavin to take a leave of absence from ADL and answer his country's call once again, to serve as U.S. Ambassador to France.
    More Details Hide Details Kennedy hoped Gavin would be able to improve deteriorating diplomatic relations with France, due to his experiences with the French during World War II, and his wartime relationship with France's President, General Charles De Gaulle.
  • 1958
    Age 50
    Upon retiring from the U.S. Army, Gavin was recruited by an industrial research and consulting firm, Arthur D. Little, Inc. He began as Vice President in 1958, was elected President of the company in 1960 and eventually served as both President and Chairman of the Board until his retirement from ADL in 1977.
    More Details Hide Details During his tenure at ADL, he developed a $10 million domestic company into a $70 million international company. Gavin remained as a consultant with ADL after his retirement. He served on the boards of several Boston organizations, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Northeastern University, and some business boards as well.
    He wrote a book, War and Peace in the Space Age, published in mid-1958, which, among other things, detailed his reasons for leaving the army at that time.
    More Details Hide Details
    Gavin retired from the U.S. Army in March 1958 as a lieutenant general.
    More Details Hide Details
  • FORTIES
  • 1948
    Age 40
    Gavin married Jean Emert Duncan of Knoxville, Tennessee, in July 1948 and remained married to her for 42 years until his death in 1990.
    More Details Hide Details He adopted Jean's daughter, Caroline Ann, by her first marriage. He and Jean had three daughters, Patricia Catherine, Marjorie Aileen and Chloe Jean. He had a daughter, Barbara by his first marriage. Barbara later in her life, having saved the letters that General Gavin sent to her during the war, wrote a book with them entitled The General and His Daughter, The War Time Letters of General James Gavin to his daughter Barbara. Gavin's military decorations and awards include: General Gavin authored five books: The street that leads to the Waal Bridge in Nijmegen is now called General James Gavin Street. Near to the location of his para drop during Operation Market-Garden in Groesbeek a residential area is named in his honour. A street in Thorpe Astley, a suburb of Leicester, England, was named Gavin Close in his honour. Thorpe Astley forms part of Braunstone Town in which General Gavin was stationed at Braunstone Hall, prior to the D-Day landings.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1944
    Age 36
    Gavin assumed command of the 82nd Airborne Division on August 8, 1944, and was promoted to major general in October.
    More Details Hide Details For the first time, Gavin would lead the 82nd Airborne into combat. On Sunday, September 17, Operation Market Garden took off. Market Garden, devised by Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, consisted of an airborne attack of three British and American airborne divisions. The 82nd was to take the bridge across the Maas river in Grave, seize at least one of four bridges across the Maas-Waal canal, and the bridge across the Waal river in Nijmegen. The 82nd was also to take control of the high grounds in the vicinity of Groesbeek, a small Dutch town near the German border. The ultimate objective of the offensive was Arnhem. In the drop into the Netherlands, Gavin landed on hard pavement instead of grass, injuring his back. He had it inspected by a doctor a few days later, who claimed that his back was fine, and so Gavin continued normally throughout the entirety of the war. Five years later, he had his back examined at Walter Reed Hospital, where he learned that he had, in fact, fractured two discs in the jump.
  • 1943
    Age 35
    On December 9, 1943, Gavin was promoted to brigadier general and became the assistant division commander of the 82nd Airborne Division; he was one the youngest Army officers to become a general in World War II.
    More Details Hide Details The 82nd Airborne moved to England during the early months of 1944. Gavin was part of Mission Boston on D-Day. This was a parachute combat assault conducted at night by the U.S. 82nd Airborne Division on June 6, 1944, as part of the American airborne landings in Normandy. The intended objective was to secure an area of roughly on either side of the Merderet River. They were to capture the town of Sainte-Mère-Église, a crucial communications crossroad behind Utah Beach, and to block the approaches into the area from the west and southwest. They were to seize causeways and bridges over the Merderet at La Fière and Chef-du-Pont, destroy the highway bridge over the Douve River at Pont l'Abbé (now Étienville), and secure the area west of Sainte-Mère-Église to establish a defensive line between Gourbesville and Renouf. Gavin was to describe the operation as having two interrelated challenges – it had to be 'planned and staged with one eye on deception and one on the assault'.
    On April 29, 1943, Gavin left the harbor of New York on board the SS Monterey, arriving in Casablanca on May 10, 1943.
    More Details Hide Details Lieutenant General George Patton, the U.S. Seventh Army commander, suggested performing the invasion at night, but Ridgway and Gavin disagreed because they had not practiced night jumps. After mounting casualties during practice jumps, Gavin canceled all practice jumps until the invasion. The regiment was transported to Kairouan in Tunisia, and on July 9 at 10:00am, they entered the planes that would take them to Sicily. Their mission was to land 24 hours before the planned day/time of major combat initiation ("D-Day") to the north and east of Gela and take and hold the surrounding area to split the German line of supply and disrupt their communications. One hour before scheduled combat, they should link up with the U.S. 1st Infantry Division and help them take control of the airfield at Ponte Oliveto. Gavin was the commander of the combat team, consisting of the 505th, the 3rd Battalion of the 504th, the 456th Parachute Field Artillery Battalion, B Company of the 307th Airborne Engineer Battalion, a signal platoon, and some attached units (for example, naval gunfire observation teams). The Axis had 16 divisions in Sicily (two German and the remainder Italian), 14 of which were combat ready. Among these divisions were the Herman Goering Fallschirm-Panzer Division and the 15th Panzergrenadier Division.
    In February 1943, the 82nd Airborne Division, consisting of the 325th and 326th Glider Infantry Regiments and the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, was selected to participate in the Allied invasion of Sicily, codenamed Operation Husky.
    More Details Hide Details Not enough gliders were available to have both glider regiments take part in the landings, so the 326th Glider Infantry Regiment was relieved from assignment to the 82nd on February 4, 1943, and replaced by Gavin's 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, which arrived at Fort Bragg on February 12. Gavin arranged a last regimental-sized jump for training and demonstration purposes before the division was shipped to North Africa. On April 10, 1943, Ridgway explained what their next mission would be: Operation Husky, the Allied invasion of Sicily. Gavin's regiment would be the first ever in the history of the United States Army to make a regimental-sized airborne landing. He declared, "It is exciting and stimulating that the first regimental parachute operation in the history of our army is to be taken by the 505th."
  • 1942
    Age 34
    In August 1942, Gavin became the commanding officer of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment at Fort Benning which had been activated shortly before on July 6.
    More Details Hide Details He was promoted to colonel shortly thereafter. Gavin built this regiment from the ground up. He led his troops on long marches and realistic training sessions, creating the training missions himself and leading the marches personally. He also placed great value on having his officers "the first out of the airplane door and the last in the chow line".
    In the spring of 1942, Gavin and Lee went to Army Headquarters in Washington, D.C., to discuss the order of battle for the first U.S. airborne division.
    More Details Hide Details The U.S. 82nd Infantry Division (stationed in Camp Claiborne, Louisiana) was selected to be converted into the first American airborne division. Lesley McNair's influence led to the 82nd Airborne's initial composition of two glider infantry regiments and one parachute infantry regiment, with organic parachute and glider artillery and other support units.
    In February 1942, shortly after the United States entered World War II, Gavin took a condensed course at the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, which qualified him to serve on the staff of a division.
    More Details Hide Details He returned to the Provisional Airborne Group and was tasked with building up an airborne division.
  • 1941
    Age 33
    On October 16, 1941, Gavin was promoted to major.
    More Details Hide Details One of Gavin's first priorities was determining how airborne troops could be used most effectively. His first action was writing FM 31-30: Tactics and Technique of Air-Borne Troops. He used information about Soviet and German experiences with paratroopers and glider troops, and also used his own experience in tactics and warfare. The manual contained information about tactics, but also about the organization of the paratroopers, what kind of operations they could execute, and what they would need to execute their task effectively. Later, when Gavin was asked what made his career take off so fast, he would answer, "I wrote the book".
    Gavin began training at the new Parachute School in Fort Benning in August 1941.
    More Details Hide Details After graduating in August, he served in an experimental unit. His first command was as a captain and the commanding officer of C Company of the newly established 503rd Parachute Infantry Battalion. Gavin's friends William T. Ryder, commander of airborne training, and William Yarborough, communications officer of the Provisional Airborne Group, convinced General William C. Lee to let Gavin develop the tactics and basic rules of airborne combat. Lee followed up on this recommendation, and made Gavin his operations and training officer (S-3).
    This event and his extensive study on Stonewall Jackson's movement tactics led him to volunteer for a posting in the new airborne unit in April 1941.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1940
    Age 32
    He took an interest in the German airborne assault on the Fort Eben-Emael in Belgium in May 1940, in which well-equipped German paratroopers dropped from the sky at night and captured the fort.
    More Details Hide Details
  • TWENTIES
  • 1936
    Age 28
    In 1936, Gavin was posted to the Philippines.
    More Details Hide Details While there, he became very concerned about the US ability to counter possible Japanese plans for expansion. The 20,000 soldiers stationed there were badly equipped. In the book Paratrooper: The Life of Gen. James M. Gavin, he is quoted as saying, "Our weapons and equipment were no better than those used in World War I". After 1½ years in the Philippines, he returned to Washington with his family and served with the 3rd Infantry Division in the Vancouver Barracks. Gavin was promoted to captain and held his first command position as commanding officer of K Company of the 7th Infantry Regiment. While stationed at Fort Ord, California, he received an injury to his right eye during a sports match. Gavin feared that this would end his military career, and he visited a physician in Monterey, California. The physician diagnosed a retinal detachment, and recommended an eye patch for 90 days. Gavin decided to rely on his eye healing by itself to hide the injury.
  • 1933
    Age 25
    In 1933, Gavin, who had no desire to become an instructor for new recruits, was posted to the 28th and 29th Infantry Regiment at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, under the command of General Lesley J. McNair.
    More Details Hide Details He spent most of his free time in, as he called it, the "excellent library" of this fort, while the other soldiers spent most of their time partying, shooting and playing polo. One author in particular impressed Gavin: J.F.C. Fuller. Gavin said about him: "He saw clearly the implications of machines, weapons, gasoline, oil, tanks and airplanes. I read with avidity all of his writings."
  • 1929
    Age 21
    After his graduation and his commissioning as a second lieutenant, he married Irma Baulsir on September 5, 1929.
    More Details Hide Details Gavin was posted to Camp Harry J. Jones near Douglas, Arizona and the U.S.-Mexican border. This camp housed the 25th Infantry Regiment (one of the entirely African-American Buffalo Soldier regiments). He stayed in this posting for three years. Afterwards, Gavin attended the United States Army Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia. This school was managed by Colonel George C. Marshall, who had brought Joseph Stillwell with him to lead the Tactics department. Here Gavin found the army he was looking for: an army actively seeking innovations and new possibilities. Marshall and Stillwell taught their students not to rely on lengthy written orders, but rather to give rough guidelines for the commanders in the field to execute as they saw fit, and to let the field commanders do the actual tactical thinking; this was contrary to all other education in the US Army thus far. Gavin himself had this to say about Stilwell and his methods: "He was a superb officer in that position, hard and tough worker, and he demanded much, always insisting that anything you ask the troops to do, you must be able to do yourself." At Fort Benning, Gavin learned to develop and rely on his own style of command.
    In the 1929 edition of the West Point yearbook, Howitzer, he was mentioned as a boxer and as the cadet who had already been a soldier.
    More Details Hide Details
    After four years of hard work, he graduated in June 1929.
    More Details Hide Details
  • TEENAGE
  • 1925
    Age 17
    Gavin arrived at West Point in the summer of 1925.
    More Details Hide Details On the application forms, he indicated his age as 21 (instead of 18) to hide the fact that he was not old enough to join the army when he did. Since Gavin missed the basic education which was needed to understand the lessons, he rose at 4:30 every morning and read his books in the bathroom, the only place with enough light to read.
  • 1924
    Age 16
    He started school on September 1, 1924.
    More Details Hide Details In order to prepare for the entrance exams into West Point, Gavin was tutored by another mentor, Lieutenant Percy Black, from 8 o'clock in the morning until noon on algebra, geometry, English and history. He passed the exams and was allowed to apply to West Point.
    On April 1, 1924, Gavin was sworn into the U.S. Army, and was stationed in Panama.
    More Details Hide Details His basic training was performed on the job in his unit, the U.S. Coast Artillery at Fort Sherman. He served as a crewmember of a 155 mm gun, under the command of Sergeant McCarthy, who described him as fine. Another person he looked up to was his first sergeant, an American Indian named "Chief" Williams. Panama was not a comfortable posting for soldiers because of the high temperatures and the malaria-causing mosquitoes. Gavin spent his spare time reading books from the library, notably Great Captains and a biography of Hannibal. He had been forced to quit school in seventh grade in order to help support his family, and acutely felt his lack of education. In addition, he made excursions in the region, trying to satisfy his boundless curiosity about everything. First Sergeant "Chief" Williams recognized Gavin's potential and made him his assistant; Gavin was promoted to corporal six months later.
    At the end of March 1924, aged 17, Gavin spoke to a U.S. Army recruiting officer.
    More Details Hide Details Since he was under 18, he needed parental consent to enlist. Knowing that his adoptive parents would not consent, Gavin told the recruiter he was an orphan. The recruiting officer took him and a couple of other underage boys, who were orphans, to a lawyer who declared himself their guardian and signed the parental consent paperwork.
    In March 1924, on his 17th birthday, he took the night train to New York.
    More Details Hide Details 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. After that, he started looking for a job.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1909
    Age 1
    When he was about two years old, he was placed in the Convent of Mercy orphanage in Brooklyn, where he remained until he was adopted in 1909 by Martin and Mary Gavin from Mount Carmel, Pennsylvania and given the name James Maurice Gavin.
    More Details Hide Details Gavin took his first job as a newspaper delivery boy at the age of 10. By the age of 11, he had two routes and was an agent for three out-of-town papers. During this time, he enjoyed following articles about World War I. In the eighth grade, he moved on from the paper job and started working at a barbershop. There he listened to the stories of the old miners. This led him to realize he did not want to be a miner. In school, he learned about the Civil War. From that point on, he decided to study everything he could about the subject. He was amazed at what he discovered and decided if he wanted to learn this "magic" of controlling thousands of troops, from miles away, he would have to continue his education at the United States Military Academy at West Point.
  • 1907
    Born
    Gavin was born in Brooklyn, New York on March 22, 1907.
    More Details Hide Details His precise ancestry is unclear. His mother may have been an Irish immigrant, Katherine Ryan, and his father James Nally (also of Irish heritage), although official documentation lists Thomas Ryan as father; possibly in order to make the birth legitimate. The birth certificate lists his name as James Nally Ryan, although Nally was crossed out.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
All data offered is derived from public sources. Spokeo does not verify or evaluate each piece of data, and makes no warranties or guarantees about any of the information offered. Spokeo does not possess or have access to secure or private financial information. Spokeo is not a consumer reporting agency and does not offer consumer reports. None of the information offered by Spokeo is to be considered for purposes of determining any entity or person's eligibility for credit, insurance, employment, housing, or for any other purposes covered under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)