Stories about Mattis’ caring and deference to the lower ranks abound. As a one-star general he dressed for guard duty, sword and all, one Christmas at Quantico, Va., relieving a young lieutenant to spend the holiday with his family.
Brig. Gen. John Broadmeadow accompanied Mattis on a tour of remote checkpoints in northern Kuwait in the run-up to the Iraq invasion. Mattis wanted to sound out the Marines on duty, so he had Broadmeadow, then a lieutenant colonel, stand post for a half hour.
“He walked away from that talk with very junior Marines with some direct tasks to his regimental commanders,” and the young Marines got a great story to tell about the general, Broadmeadow said.
No book? No autobiography? No summing up of a lifetime of lessons learned? Hopefully he changes his mind, or finds somebody competent to do it for him.