Letter: Find better way to honor a great American patriot - The Buffalo News
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Letter: Find better way to honor a great American patriot

Find better way to honor a great American patriot

As a veteran of the Office of Strategic Services who had the honor of serving under Gen. William J. Donovan’s command, I could not agree more with The News’ recent editorial, “While naming a cemetery for him is good, ‘Wild Bill’ Donovan deserves more.”

Donovan is a seminal figure in the history of the United States. His lifetime of service, sacrifice and bravery began in World War I when he received the Medal of Honor. Between World War I and World War II, he was one of President Franklin Roosevelt’s personal emissaries. Donovan played an instrumental role in securing American aid for Great Britain before the United States entered the war. During World War II, he founded and led the Office of Strategic Services, the World War II predecessor to the CIA and the U.S. Special Operations Command. After the war, the CIA was created using his blueprint and he served as ambassador to Thailand during the Cold War.

When Donovan died in 1959, President Dwight Eisenhower, who served as the Supreme Allied Commander during World War II, called him “the last hero.”

Donovan’s influence on our national security can still be felt today. When Navy Adm. William McRaven, the current commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command, received the William J. Donovan Award from the OSS Society in 2013, he said, “the OSS is back.”

Buffalo should be extremely proud that it was the home to one of America’s greatest patriots. I urge its citizens and leaders to find a way to honor him.

Maj. Gen. John K. Singlaub

U.S. Army, retired

Chairman, OSS Society

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