Former USAREUR commander Crosbie Saint dies at 81; praised for Cold War leadership
May 11, 2018
Retired Gen. Crosbie Saint, who commanded U.S. Army forces in Europe during the tumultuous end of the Cold War, died earlier this week in Maryland. He was 81. Saint was the commander of U.S. Army Europe from 1988 to 1992, a period that saw the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Current USAREUR commander Lt. Gen. Christopher Cavoli expressed his appreciation for Saint’s service Thursday. “Gen. Saint was a great soldier and American,” Cavoli said in a statement. “He dedicated his life to serving our country and was a mentor to many. His death is a terrible loss to our nation. His family and friends are in our thoughts.” Saint hailed from a military family and was born at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where his father Frederick was an instructor. His father was transferred to the Philippines just before World War II and at age 6, the young Saint, his mother and half-brother were evacuated from the islands shortly before U.S. troops there surrendered to the Japanese in 1942. His father died as a prisoner of war.
Saint was graduated from West Point in 1958 and went on to serve two tours in Vietnam as an armor officer. On his first Vietnam tour, Saint worked sometimes with his half-brother, Charles, who was two years his senior and a fellow USMA graduate and Army officer. He also served five total tours in Europe, including as the top U.S. officer on the Continent. He was a junior officer stationed on the border between East Germany and West Germany in 1961, when the Berlin Wall was erected, USAREUR said – meaning he was present for both the creation and destruction of one of the 20th century’s most odious symbols. After retiring from the military when his term as USAREUR commander ended, Saint moved into the private sector, founding a consulting firm and serving on corporate advisory boards. Saint was one of 88 retired senior military officers who endorsed Donald Trump for president in 2016.