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Memorandum for General Shedd
June 14, 1940 [Washington, D.C.]
Increasingly each day there come to me requests from men of past experience, to be given some opportunity to do their part. Many of these, of course, are of the type we would not wish to accept; but others are men who would be a great asset to the Army. Yesterday, for example, Colonel Patton at Myer, had three or four of the men who were with him in the Tank corps in the Meuse-Argonne come to him to see if they could not in some way get into this. At least two of them were men of high position in civil life, who were willing to contribute their services in any way possible; had been wounded in France and given the DSC, and understood thoroughly what it meant actually to fight tanks. Most of the applicants could only fit into staff jobs; however there are many others who might contribute a very valuable veterans touch in some of our new units. There is a large representation of men who have outstanding qualifications, though entirely without previous military experience.
If any use is to be made of these people, the matter of selection would be the most critical question. But I think we should arrive at a prospective solution at as early a date as possible, otherwise we will be either overwhelmed with pressure or bitterly attacked for our failure to utilize existing talent. Over all this remains, of course, the question of protecting the existing Reserve Corps.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed memorandum.
Recommended Citation: The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, ed. Larry I. Bland, Sharon Ritenour Stevens, and Clarence E. Wunderlin, Jr. (Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 2, “We Cannot Delay,” July 1, 1939-December 6, 1941 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986), pp. 242-243.