John Gort

John Gort, the son of 5th Viscount Gort, was born in County Durham in 1886. He succeeded his father as 6th Viscount Gort in 1902. Educated at Harrow and the Royal Military College, Woolwich, he was commissioned into the Grenadier Guards in 1905.

During the First World War Gort was mentioned in dispatches nine times and won the Military Cross. On 27th September 1918, Gort won the Victoria Cross at Canal du Nord.

After the war Gort taught at the Staff College and was promoted to the rank of colonel in 1925. He also served as Commander of the Guards Brigade (1930-32), Director of Military Training in India (1932-36) and Commander of the Staff College (1936-39).

Gort was made a full general in 1937 and later that year was appointed Commander-in-Chief of the Imperial General Staff.

In 1939 Gort was Commander-in-Chief of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) that went to France. The German offensive through the Ardennes during the invasion of France in May, 1940, left 10 divisions of the BEF caught and gradually squeezed onto the beaches of Dunkirk.

On his return to England he became A.D.C. to George VI. He also served as Governor of Gibraltar (1941-42), Governor of Malta (1942-44) and High Commissioner of Palestine (1944-45). John Gort died in March, 1946.

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