Thursday, December 27, 2012

Retired Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf dies


A U.S. official says retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, who commanded the U.S.-led international coalition that drove Saddam Hussein's forces out of Kuwait in 1991, has died. He was 78.

The official tells The Associated Press that Schwarzkopf died Thursday in Tampa, Fla. The official wasn't authorized to release the information publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Former President George H.W. Bush, who remains in the intensive care unit at Methodist Hospital, released a statement on the passing Schwarzkopf.

"Barbara and I mourn the loss of a true American patriot and one of the great military leaders of his generation. A distinguished member of that Long Gray Line hailing from West Point, General Norm Schwarzkopf, to me, epitomized the 'duty, service, country' creed that has defended our freedom and seen this great Nation through our most trying international crises. More than that, he was a good and decent man — and a dear friend.  Barbara and I send our condolences to his wife Brenda and his wonderful family."

A much-decorated combat soldier in Vietnam, Schwarzkopf was known popularly as "Stormin' Norman" for a notoriously explosive temper.

He lived in retirement in Tampa, where he had served in his last military assignment as commander-in-chief of U.S. Central Command. That is the headquarters responsible for U.S. military and security concerns in nearly 20 countries from the eastern Mediterranean and Africa to Pakistan.

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