Ruffner, Clark Louis [Gen CoS XCorps]

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Clark L. Ruffner
Clark L Ruffner.jpg
General Clark Louis Ruffner
Born January 12, 1903
Buffalo, New York
Died July 26, 1982(1982-07-26) (aged 79)
Allegiance United States United States of America
Service/branch Emblem of the United States Department of the Army.svg United States Army
Years of service 1924-1962
Rank US-O10 insignia.svg General
Commands held Third Army
U.S. Army, Pacific
2nd Armored Division
2nd Infantry Division
Battles/wars World War II
Korean War
Awards Distinguished Service Cross
Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star
Legion of Merit
Bronze Star
Air Medal

General Clark Louis Ruffner (September 12, 1903  July 26, 1982) was a senior officer in the United States Army who served in World War II as well as the Korean War.


Ruffner was born January 12, 1903, in Buffalo, New York, and graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1924. Most of his early career was spent in various cavalry units until his appointment as Assistant Professor of Military Science and Tactics at Norwich University in Vermont from 1937 to 1940.

During World War II, Ruffner first served as Assistant Chief of Staff and then Deputy Chief of Staff for VII Corps from 1942-43. He then went on to become Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for the Hawaiian Department in 1943. From there, Ruffner became Deputy Chief of Staff, Central Pacific Area, from 194344, and Chief of Staff for the U.S. Army, Pacific from 1944 until after the end of the war.


At the outbreak of the Korean War, Ruffner was Chief of Staff, X Corps, but soon took command of the 2nd Infantry Division in 1951 from where he was a key commander in the conflict. Ruffner's unit occupied the center of the UN line during the Battle of the Soyang River during the Chinese spring offensive. After his command, Ruffner spent the remainder of the war in Washington working on International Security Affairs in the office of the Defense Secretary.

End of War

In 1954, Ruffner moved back into the Pacific theater where he successively served as Deputy Commanding General and Commanding General for the U.S. Army, Pacific. From there he became Commanding General, 2nd Armored Division, from 195456, and after a tour in Germany, Commanding General of the Third United States Army from 1958-60. During this period, he received promotions to lieutenant general and general. General Ruffner concluded his career as U.S. Representative to NATO, and retired in 1962. He died on July 26, 1982.

Awards and decorations

General Ruffner's military decorations and service medals include the Distinguished Service Cross, Distinguished Service Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters, Silver Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Commendation Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the Korean Service Medal with four bronze service stars, and the United Nations Service Medal.

See also


 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Government document "[1]".

Military offices
Preceded by
Robert B. McClure
Commanding General of the 2nd Infantry Division
January 1951  August 1951
Succeeded by
Thomas F. Deshazo
Preceded by
Leander L. Doan
Commanding General of the 2nd Armoured Division
January 1955  April 1956
Succeeded by
Conrad S. Babcock, Jr.
Preceded by
Thomas F. Hickey
Commanding General of the Third United States Army
1958  1960
Succeeded by
Robert F. Sink





General Ruffner's Private Chopper "Rruf-f-f" 46th ASH Feb. 1953

Major General Clark L. ("Nick") Ruffner: "The General, anxious to see the attack by the Dutch first hand, took off in his helicopter and headed for the area. Just prior to 1500, the copter's motor failed and the frail craft plunged earthward, crashing in a rocky crag. By some miracle both General Ruffner and his pilot escaped unhurt except for bruises although the craft was completely demolished. The General's first question was of the progress of the attack. Assured that it had jumped-off at 1515, he returned to his forward command post to continue directing the magnificent stand of his Division."




August6, 1950

The X corps' chief of staff was Maj. Gen. Clark L. Ruffner, who had arrived from the United States on 6 August and had started working with the planning group two days later


August 8, 1950

had started working with the planning group two days later. He was an energetic and diplomatic officer with long experience and a distinguished record in staff work.

During World War II he had been Chief of Staff, U.S. Army Forces, Pacific Ocean Areas, in Hawaii. The X Corps staff was an able one, many of its members hand-picked from among the Far East Command staff.

The major ground units of X Corps were the 1st Marine Division and the 7th Infantry Division. In the summer of 1950 it was no easy matter for the United States to assemble in the Far East a Marine division at full strength.