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The three presidents to hold the highest military ranks are: Presidents George Washington (center), Dwight D. Eisenhower (at right) and Ulysses S. Grant (at left), respectively. Washington held the rank of lieutenant general (O-9) when he died, but in 1976, then president and former Naval Reserve lieutenant commander, Gerald R. Ford, posthumously appointed him to General of the Armies of the United States, which would theoretically make him a six-star general or (O-12). The president’s declarations indicated that Washington would rank higher than all officers past, present and future. Eisenhower's highest rank was that of a five-star general. He served as Supreme Allied Commander in Europe during World War II (1942-1945). Although the title General of the Army is associated with the five-star insignia, Grant held the position as a four-star general. (Photos courtesy of Library of Congress. U.S. Air Force graphic/Senior Airman Luis Loza Gutierrez)
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