May 17, 2011
Former Sen. Max Cleland appears at a recent ceremony at grave of General of the Armies John J. Pershing at Arlington National Cemetery in his current role as Secretary of the American Battle Monuments Commission. Pershing served as the Commission's first chairman from 1923 to 1948. Cleland lost his right arm and both legs in Vietnam in 1968 and went on to be elected a state senator, serve as director of the Veterans Administration under President Jimmy Carter, and to be elected Georgia Secretary of State and U.S. senator.
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As a former high school athlete, Max Cleland loved to compete. He never let the loss of an arm and both legs in Vietnam stop him and it was that competitive spirit that led the former third baseman from Lithonia High School to eventually become a U.S. senator.