Patton used to pray nightly to a painting of two men he thought were God and Jesus but were really Civil War heroes Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, Hymel said. George Sr.'s father had commanded a Confederate regiment during the Civil War and was killed in Winchester, Va.
In early December 1944, Gen. George S. Patton Jr., commander of the United States’ 3rd Army, stood with his troops at Germany’s doorstep. He’d pushed his men across France toward Germany with furious speed during summer and early fall, but in the last months, as he drove through France’s Lorraine region toward the Saar River, progress stalled. Fuel and supplies were running short, and perhaps even more deviling, the weather wouldn’t cooperate. Driving rains had mired his troops and grounded the fighter planes and bombers needed for air support.
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