When asked who the greatest general of the Second World War was, Col. Ralph W. Hauenstein would, without fail, say George C. Marshall. The twentieth century gave the United States many of its best military leaders and statesmen ever. Guided by a strong moral compass, these leaders held deeply to the value of self-sacrifice and public service. Along with Marshall in this gleaming constellation of leaders, stood Grand Rapids’ own Arthur Vandenberg, quite possibly the best senator Michigan ever sent to Capitol Hill. Through their statesmanship, they fielded one of the nation’s most ambitious foreign policy plans in history. After Europe was left in rubble at the conclusion of the Second World War, they helped pass The Marshall Plan, an industrious economic initiative to rebuild Europe.
The Foundation along the Hauenstein Center and the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum, welcomed David Roll, author of George C. Marshall: Defender of the Republic. West Michigan’s own Hank Meijer, author of Arthur Vandenberg: The Man in the Middle of the American Century, joined Roll on stage for a lively discussion about the relationship between General Marshall and Senator Vandenberg.
(Content, video, and photos courtesy of the Hauenstein Center)