Generals, Genealogy & Me

Updated: Apr 20

This is a great article about the famous General George S. Patton who served during WWII and who also had dyslexia. What was very interesting to me was that the article talks about his genealogy and how important he found his ancestors. He was very proud of them and he realized that it was his ancestors who were the likely reason that he was who he was. Patton came from a military background going back to the American Revolutionary War. He also came from a  political and law background as his father was a lawyer and his uncle was the second Mayor of Los Angeles. I have always looked up to Patton because of his dyslexia and that he was a general like my maternal grandfather, Chevalier Lt. Gen. William Wilson “Buffalo Bill” Quinn. A Lieutenant General is a three-star general and my grandfather just so happened to fight underneath Patton in the United States Seventh Army. 


Patton seemed to make quick decisions and apparently was not good at punctuation. I also make decisions without thinking as much as I should and it is something that I am constantly working on.


General Patton was a terrible student, similar to my grandfather. General Quinn failed to get into West Point three times and nobody in his family believed in him except for his mother and his uncle Lorie Quinn, who was Mayor of Crisfield, Maryland. Lorie believed that my grandfather could get into West Point. Not even my grandfather's school teacher believed in him. When the teacher asked him what he wanted to do when he grew up. When my grandfather said that he wanted to go to West Point, his teacher laughed at him. Years later my grandfather, (“Buffalo Bill” as he became known when he was fighting in Korea on the front lines), came back to see that school teacher in his West Point cadet uniform and that was that. 


Like Patton, I believe my ancestors are why I am the way I am, no matter how distant and like Patton, I am very proud of my ancestors.


I have been researching for a long time and have found 20 million people in my family tree.  Most of the time though, it doesn’t matter who your ancestors were, you should be proud of yourself for who you are and quest to know who you are. That’s what really matters. When you have a family tree of twenty million people, you know there are going to be some people in there who learned differently and who probably had some birth defects as well.


If I have a family tree of eighteen thousand people then that means we all do. There was somebody in your family tree who was not born perfect, and from studying them and your history, there is much to learn.









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Friends of Quinn

Friends of Quinn is a program of the National Center for Learning Disabilities and is dedicated to providing resources for young people with learning differences

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