Like father, like sons -- A Roosevelt wartime legacy

A Twist in Time

Bill CoateDecember 8, 2011 

Theodore Roosevelt had fighting blood in his veins, and when World War I came along, it fell to his four sons to put their father's pugnacious patriotism into motion and to pay the price for his devotion to duty.

All the president's sons, Archie, Kermit, Quentin and Ted, Jr., lined up to join the fight against the Germans and their allies. Before it was all over, one was killed, and one made the 100% disabled list with a strange twist.

Archie became a Captain in the 16th U.S. Infantry Regiment, while Kermit served with the U.S. Field Artillery. Quentin learned to fly and was attached to an air Squadron. Ted, Jr. found his place as an officer with the 26th U.S. Infantry.

The war quickly took its toll on all of the brothers. Archie was the first when he had one knee blown away by a grenade blast. The wound left him totally disabled and he was discharged.

Three months after Archie was wounded, Quentin paid the ultimate price, he was shot down and killed in a dogfight. Then five days after Quentin's death, Ted, Jr. was wounded. Of the four Roosevelt brothers, only Kermit made it through World War I without serious wounds. They were indeed their father's sons ... but that was just the beginning of their courageous story.

When World War II broke out, the three surviving Roosevelt brothers went into battle again, all three serving with distinction. Ted won the Congressional Medal of Honor and died just a few days later at Normandy. Kermit joined and served in North Africa; then there was Archie.

TR's youngest son, who had been declared totally disabled as a result of those wounds in World War I, somehow managed to get into the fight again, but not for long. You see, this never-say-die son of President Teddy Roosevelt once more suffered grenade wounds to his knee, and in an unbelievable twist in time, he was declared totally disabled for the second time.

To date, Archie Roosevelt is the only United States soldier who has ever been declared totally disabled twice while fighting for his country. Truly, his father would have been proud.

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