One of the lesser known features of the life of General George S. Patton, is that he was an Olympian. Always an athlete, Patton was stationed at Fort Myer, Virginia. Early in 1912, Patton learned that he was being considered to be the Army’s representative in the Modern Pentathlon at the Olympics being held in Stockholm that summer. Patton had almost no time to train, but he consented to participate.
In Sweden, Patton scored as follows: out of the 37 contestants he placed seventh in the 300 meter freestyle swimming; fourth out of 29 participants in fencing; he placed sixth in the equestrian steeple chase; in the four kilometre cross-country footrace he placed third out of fifteen; in pistol shooting he finished 20th out of 32 contestants.
Overall he finished in fifth place, a very good performance considering he had almost no training time. Patton thoroughly enjoyed the Olympics and made the following comment: (more…)