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Jonathan Mayhew "Skinny" Wainwright IV was Born

Today in Masonic History Jonathan Mayhew "Skinny" Wainwright IV was born in 1883.

Jonathan Mayhew "Skinny" Wainwright IV was an American soldier.

Wainwright was born in Fort Walla Walla, which is now in Walla Walla Washington, on August 23rd, 1883. In 1901, he graduated from Highland Park High School. His father was killed in action in the Philippines a in 1902. In 1906, Wainwright graduated from West Point.

Wainwright was assigned to the United States 1st Calvary Regiment in Texas serving from 1906 to 1908. He then served in the Philippines during the Moro Rebellion from 1908 to 1910.

In 1916, Wainwright was promoted to Captain. His promotion came after he graduated from Mounted Service School in Fort Riley, Kansas. By 1917 he was stationed, on staff, at the first officer training camp in Plattsburgh, New York.

In 1918, Wainwright was ordered to France to serve during World War I. He received a temporary promotion to Lieutenant Colonel during his assignment on occupation duty in Germany until 1920. After being reassigned he reverted back to the rank of Captain and then received a promotion to Major.

In between World War I and World War II, Wainwright served in a variety of posts. He attended the Army War College in 1934. In 1938 he was promoted to Brigadier General and put in command of the 1st Calvary Brigade at Fort Clark, Texas.

In 1940, Wainwright received a temporary promotion to Major General and was assigned to the Philippines under General MacArthur. His chief responsibility was in resisting the Japanese invasion of the Philippines. After MacArthur was relocated to Australia in 1942 to serve as the Allied Supreme Commander, Southwest Pacific Area, Wainwright received a temporary promotion to Lieutenant General. In April of the same year, soldiers on the Bataan peninsula who were under the command of Major General Edward P. King, surrendered. By May 6th, in an attempt to limit casualties, Wainwright surrendered. By the beginning of June all Allied troops in the Philippines had surrendered.

Wainwright was the highest ranking Prisoner of War, until is liberation in 1945 by the Red Army. Despite his rank he was treated very harshly by the Japanese Army. During his time as a Prisoner of War of he was put up for a Medal of Honor, it was stopped by MacArthur who felt he Philippines should not have been surrendered. After his liberation, he was put in for the medal again and this time it was granted.

After World War II, Wainwright received a ticker tape parade in New York City. He retired in 1947. After retirement he traveled around giving speeches to civic organizations. In 1948, he was slated to give the nomination speech for MacArthur if he was nominated.

Wainwright passed away from a stroke in San Antonio, Texas on September 2nd, 1953.

Wainwright was a member of Union Lodge No. 7 in Junction City, Kansas in May of 1946. He was also active as a Shriner.

This article provided by Brother Eric C. Steele.