Linton Sinclair Boatwright
Major General, United States Army
A former Fort Riley commanding general was buried at Arlington National Cemetery at 1 p.m. Wednesday, 12 November 2008.
Retired Major General Linton S. Boatwright was Commanding General at Fort Riley after a tour as Assistant Chief of Staff for Logistics, Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations and Artillery Commander and Chief of Staff of the I Field Force in Vietnam.
He was recognized as the ranking military officer presiding over President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s funeral and his last assignment took him home to the Washington, D.C., area, where he was stationed at the Pentagon for several years before retiring.
Boatright died August 9, 2008, after a long fight against Parkinson’s disease. He was one of a small number of officers of the U.S. Army who were authorized to wear 14 battle stars.
He attended elementary and high school in Manassas, Virginia, and received an appointment to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point at age 16. He was graduated from West Point in June 1941 as a Cavalry officer. In one year he rose to be the regimental operations officer of the 578th Field Artillery Regiment. In that position, he was promoted to the grade of Major and was, at the time, the youngest Major in the U.S. Army.
In April 1944, Boatwright was ordered to Europe to serve in General George S. Patton’s Third U.S. Army as an Artillery Fire Direction Officer. In that capacity, he served during Patton’s sweep across Europe, during the Battle of the Bulge, across the Rhine River and into Austria.
During the early phases of the Korean War, Boatwright served as Plans Officer with the IX Corps. He participated in the defense of the Pusan Perimeter, the link-up with MacArthur’s amphibious landing at Inchon, the drive north toward the Yalu River and the retreat from North Korea when the Chinese entered the war.
In May 1951, he was assigned to the 37th Field Artillery Battalion of the 2nd Infantry Division just prior to the opening of the Chinese Spring Offensive. In that action, Eighth Army retreated for 11 days, then counterattacked, driving the Chinese and North Korean forces out of South Korea. For its part in the campaign, the 37th Field Artillery Battalion was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation.
In September and October 1951, Boatwright coordinated the artillery fire in support of the 23d Infantry Regiment’s successful assault upon Heartbreak Ridge — one of the toughest campaigns of the Korean War.
Boatwright was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit, two Bronze Stars for valor, three Bronze Stars for meritorious service, Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Commendation Medal, European-African-Middle East Service Medal with 4 battle stars, World War II Victory medal, Army Occupation medal, National Defense Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Korean Service medal with six battle stars, Croix de Guerre (France), Croix de Guerre (Korea), Republic of Korea Order of Ulchi, Armed Forces Honor Medal (RVN), United Nations Service Medal, Vietnamese Campaign Medal, U.S. Presidential Unit Citation and the Korean Presidential Citation.
He is survived by a son, Edward of Jacksonville, Florida, and Raleigh, North Carolina; his granddaughter Noel of Raleigh; and his daughter, Clair, of Columbia, South Carolina; as well as four sisters-in-law, their husbands and children, and many dear friends across the world.
Boatwright retired in Columbia, South Carolina, in 1972.
BOATWRIGHT, LINTON S
Posted: 1 December 2008