Winston Churchill stuttered as a child. His father, who had wanted his son to become a barrister, thought Churchill was retarded because he did poorly in school, most of the time finishing near the bottom of his class. Churchill failed the sixth grade, took three full terms to get to the next class in mathematics, and was rejected by both Oxford and Cambridge. Churchill’s father advised him to pursue a career in the Army. Following his father’s advised, he then applied to join the Royal Military College at Sandhurst, the British equivalent to West Point in the United States, but he failed the entrance examination, twice! After intense tutoring and a lot of cramming, Churchill squeaked by the third time round.
After graduation, Churchill entered the British Army, a career that seemed to suit him. By 1911, he had become First Lord of the Admiralty, pretty amazing isn’t it? He filled that position for the next four years. In 1915, during World War I, Churchill helped engineer an unsuccessful battle, referred to as the Gallipoli Disaster. Although some argued that the fault for the failure lay with the tactical commanders, Churchill took the blame and responsibility, hence received a demotion. Not too long after, he gave a remarked to the publisher of the News of the World, “I am finished. It’s over for me.”
That comment proved to be far from the truth. Churchill held a variety of positions during the 1920s, and he demonstrated his real value as a commander. When World War II broke out, Churchill was reappointed First Lord of the Admiralty and became a member of the War Cabinet. Early in the war, Neville Chamberlain, the British prime minister, resigned. Winston was the overwhelming choice to replace Neville. He accepted the position and helped lead England to victory. Despite Churchill’s success, he was heavily defeated in his bid for prime minister in 1945. Many historians speculate that his success as a wartime leader led people to believe he could not perform as well during a time of peace.
Nonetheless, 6 years later, Winston again became prime minister, a position that he held until he resigned in 1955. When not serving in the government, Winston spent his time writing books on English and world history, for which he won the 1953 Nobel Prize in Literature.
From failure and rejection to prime minister of the united kingdom. Winston Churchill is widely regarded as one of the most successful war leaders in history (War World II).