Fayette’s top general to be recognized

Fri, 10/24/2008 - 2:31pm
By: The Citizen

Fayette’s top general to be recognized

The portion of Georgia highway 314 from the Fulton County line to its junction with Georgia highway 85 in Fayetteville has been designated the “General William Livsey Highway” in honor of the four-star general who has resided in Fayetteville since his retirement from active duty in 1987.

A resolution to name the highway for General Livsey, presented by legislators representing Fayette County, passed by the General Assembly and signed by Gov. Sonny Perdue, has been implemented by the Georgia Department of Transportation.

The ceremony on Wednesday Oct. 29 will include an 11 a.m. ceremony in the Family Life Center at Fayetteville First United Methodist Church at 175 East Lanier Avenue. Fayetteville resident Jack Wheeler, a retired Army major general who served under General Livsey in Korea, will be master of ceremonies.

Sen. Ronnie Chance of Tyrone will read the Senate resolution. DOT representative Kimberly Larson will unveil a road sign to be erected on Hwy. 314. Also on the program are performances by the North Georgia College & State University Patriot Choir and ROTC Color Guard.

General Livsey, a native of Clarkston, is one of only four native Georgians to earn the four stars of a U.S. Army general. Others are John Hendrix of Statesboro; Courtney Hodges of Perry, commander of the U.S. First Army in World War II, and Lucius Clay of Marietta, commander of the Berlin Air Lift.

A 1952 graduate of North Georgia College in Dahlonega, General Livsey began his Army career as a 3rd Infantry Division platoon leader in Korea where he was awarded a Silver Star for valor. He served a second combat tour in Vietnam, first as a battalion commander and later as assistant chief of operations, 4th Infantry Division.

At the time of his retirement in 1987 he was commander in chief of the United Nations Command in Korea, which included command of the U.S. Eighth Army and Republic of Korea forces.

“General Livsey is one of the great post-World War II Army generals,” said General Wheeler. “Korea is a better and stronger country today as a result of General Livsey’s leadership. It was under his leadership that Korea was able to host an incident free world-wide show during the 1988 Olympics.

“This was accomplished as a result of the security and security training provided by General Livsey’s command. Further, the fuse that set off the economic explosion in Korea was largely lit during his tenure as the senior military leader in Korea (1984-1987). We were able to witness this up close for two years while commanding a Korea-wide unit under General Livsey’s command.”

Among General Livsey’s notable assignments are: Commanding General of the Infantry Center and Commandant of Army Infantry School at Ft. Benning, Ga.; Commanding General of the 8th Infantry Division (Mechanized); Commanding General of VII Corps, U.S. Army Europe; Deputy Commanding General of U.S. Army Forces Command and 3rd Army at Ft. McPherson, Ga.; I Corps Chief-of-Staff Korea; Executive to Army Chief of Staff Creighton Abrams in Washington; leadership instructor at the U.S. Army Military Academy, West Point.

General Livsey’s military schooling includes the Army War College, the Armed Forces Staff College and the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College where he graduated first in his class. He also has a master’s degree in Psychology from Vanderbilt University.

In retirement, he has served as trustee for the North Georgia College & State University Foundation, and as a consultant to the Korean government and military.

His awards and decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Army Distinguished Service Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Silver Star, Legion of Merit (with three Oak Leaf Clusters), Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star with ‘V’ Device, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal with ‘V’ Device (with two Oak Leaf Clusters), Combat Infantryman Badge (Korea and Vietnam), Army Staff Identification Badge, and Parachutist Badge.

Gen. Livsey is married to the former Bena Sue Burns of East Point, Ga. They have four sons.

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Submitted by wheeljc on Wed, 10/29/2008 - 4:31pm.

It was really a great ceremony on 29 Oct at Fayetteville First UMC!! What a history lesson Gen Livsey gave. What a soldier!! Thanks to him and his ilk for what they have given to this Country!!

darrylwd's picture
Submitted by darrylwd on Tue, 10/28/2008 - 10:17am.

... we are all honored by your dedication and life in service to our country and flag. I will be proud to share your history of serving our nation to my children and grand-children. Thank you.

The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would hire them away.

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