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Citadel News Service

Citadel News Service
July 4, 2005

Lt. Gen. George M. Seignious '42,
14th president of The Citadel, dies on Sunday

Complete biography

Lieutenant General George M. Seignious II USA (Ret.) died on Sunday following complications from surgery. He was the 14th president of The Citadel, serving from 1974-1979.

Lt. Gen. George Seignious
Lt. Gen. George M. Seignious '42

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, July 7 at 10 a.m. in Summerall Chapel with a reception immediately following in Mark Clark Hall. The graveside service with full military honors will be held at 2:30 p.m. Thursday in the Beaufort National Cemetery in Beaufort, S.C.

The Orangeburg native and member of The Citadel Class of 1942 played a key role in negotiating peace in Vietnam as military advisor at the Paris Peace Talks and in defusing the nuclear missile threat with the Soviet Union as director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

Seignious was commissioned as an Army second lieutenant in infantry upon graduation from The Citadel. He served in the European Theater during World War II as with the 10th Armored Division and the 20th Armored Infantry Battalion becoming assistant operations officer of the division.

After the war, he held numerous leadership and advisory positions across the United States and to the Caribbean, Brazil, Spain, Europe and Korea. In June 1968, President Lyndon Johnson appointed him to become military advisor at the Paris Peace Talks on Vietnam.

At age 42 when he was promoted to brigadier general in 1964, he was one of the youngest officers in the history of the Army to attain that rank.

He was serving as director of the Joint Staff, Organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff when he resigned to become president of The Citadel on August 1, 1974.

Gen. Seignious
Lt. Gen. Seignious on campus in 1997

When he came to The Citadel as president he announced the goal of raising the enrollment in the Corps of Cadets to 1976 by 1976. He reached that goal a year early. During his administration, there were major improvements to facilities including the construction of Deas Hall, a physical education building; renovation of the mess hall and expansion of Capers Hall.

In 1979, General Seignious resigned as president of the college on March 1, 1979 to become director of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency with the rank of ambassador.

"General Seignious exemplified true leadership throughout his military career and as president of The Citadel. He was a great man who had a genuine appreciation of the citizen-soldier - one of the defining qualities of a Citadel alumnus," said Major General John S. Grinalds, president of The Citadel. "I will miss his helpful advice and friendship."

Seignious Hall , an athletic facility dedicated in 1982, is named in his honor.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to The Citadel Foundation, 171 Moultrie Street, Charleston, SC 29409-6230 or to the Bishop Gadsden Community Chapel Fund, One Bishop Gadsden Way, Charleston, SC 29412.

-end-

For more information:
Patricia McArver 843-953-6965 or Charlene Gunnells 843.953.2155
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