- National Archives
Considered one of the most successful combat generals in US history, Gen. George S. Patton died on December 21, 1945, 12 days after breaking his neck in a car accident near Mannheim, Germany.
Sadly, a few hours after that tragic car accident, Patton was due to return back to the US.
While leading troops during World War II, Patton purchased an English bull terrier puppy that he named Willie.
Willie was known to follow Patton everywhere, and the two were seldom separated while in England.
According to some accounts, Willie would enter a room and alert soldiers in there that Patton was on his way.
The following photo shows Willie lying next to Patton’s belongings a few days after the general’s death.
Patton was buried at the American Cemetery in Hamm, Luxembourg.Willie was sent to the US to live with Patton’s wife and daughters.