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William P. Yarborough (Lt. General, Ret.), Alumnus of :

The US Military Academy at West Point

The US Command and General Staff College

The British Staff College

US Army War College

Hallschlag University



Col. Yarborough


"When Colonel Yarborough assummed command of the 66th CIC Group in 1957, we had essentially been a group of organizational orphans. His first mission, as he apparently saw it, was to make us part of the US Army. And to do that without destroying our operational capacity. Responses to that effort varied amongst members of the group." Click here for a few details of that challenge.

After leaving the command of the 66th MI Group, he went to Fort Bragg, NC. He took command of the Special Warfare Center, as well as the Special Forces School. And received his first star.

Gen Yarborough & JFK

When he took command of the Special Warfare Center and School at Ft Bragg, the green beret was forbidden by the Dept of the Army.

The Special Forces were considered with some distaste by the Pentagon. The major turning point in developing Special Forces was the day Gen Yarborough wore his green beret at the request of President Kennedy. JFK acknowledged the beret to be a symbol of Special Forces as the elite force Yarborough envisioned

Permission pending.

Read the full report from the Kennedy Library.  

After serving as a member of the UN Armistice Commission in Korea, he returned to the Pentagon as the Dep. Chief of Staff for Special Operations. From 1966-68, he was the AC of S, G-2! From 1968 to 1969 he was the Commanding General of I Corps in Korea and Dep Cmdr-in-Chief of the US Army-Pacific from 1969 to 1971.

A few brief, current snippets:

Yarborough Knife His appreciation of the symbolic value of the insignia or prized piece of equipment magnifies the naming the Special Forces knife as "The Yarborough".
Interview with Y- in 2003. List of articles about the Yarborough Fighting Knife.

LTG Yarborough is now living in North Carolina.

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