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2nd Lt Alexander F. Sweeney came into Co C 307th Abn Engr Bn (C) 25 April 1944 as a replacement Officer.  6 days later on 3 May 1944 2nd Lt Sweeney went to Hq Co 82nd Abn Div on DS (Detached Service) indefinitely.  2nd Lt Sweeney was the Engineer Liaison between the 82nd Abn Div and the 307th Abn Eng Bn (C).  This means that Lt Sweeney was the only Co C man to go into Normandy.

On 6 June 1944 2nd Lt Sweeney was on the ground.  Whether he jumped or came in by Glider we don’t know as the manifests for the 82nd have only been found for the 507th Prcht Inf so far.  2nd Lt Sweeney was killed on 6 June 1944.  Lt Sweeney was buried on 8 June 1944 at the 82nd Abn Div Cemetery.  Sweeney was the 54th soldier buried in the 82nd Abn Div Cemetery (which became the Blosville Cemetery). 

2nd Lt Sweeney was buried in plot A-07-312.  His wounds were not fully explained on AG Report in 1944.  He was moved a few weeks later in the Blosville Cemetery and was buried in plot B-06-112.  When Lt Sweeney was sent home in 1948 his wounds were consistent with either a Gilder crash or shot in the head. 

When doing research on Lt Sweeney I discovered in a book that a Lt was killed in Normandy and was an Engineer.  The book had the wrong name of the Lt Engineer who was killed.  The book itself is very entertaining but must be taken with a grain of salt.  The one good then it did have been a mention of a narrative of a 505th Prcht Inf 1st Lt.  I received a copy of the original narrative that was given to Cornelius Ryan while writing his book The Longest Day. 

Lt Sammon talked about the death of what he believed to have been an Engineer.  It does match up with the type of wound and the area where he was killed.  The problem is the fact that he said “I believe”.  If in the IDPF it had stated that is had died of a gunshot wound that would tie the two things together.  On the disinterment in 1948 it talks of a fractured skull and mandible.  That could still point to either glider crash or gunshot.

Either way Lt Sweeney was killed on 6 June 1944 and died of a head wound.  I have included the area where the 1st Lt Sammon was when the 2nd Lt with him was killed when shot in the head.  His narrative is attached with the pages concerning this time period in Normandy. 

There are 4 pictures of the 82nd Abv Div Cemetery/Blosville Cemetery.  In the first two it shows in the purple box where Lt Sweeney was buried at the 82nd Abn Div Cemetery.  The next two shows were he was moved to a few weeks later about 200 yards to the south.  The next two show the entire Blosville Cemetery and where he was buried in Plot B.  The last photo is his gravestone in Virginia where he is buried today.

If you want to read the documentation about what happened to 2nd Lt Sweeney and the narrative for 1st Lt Sammon just click here 2nd Lt Sweeney 1944.

 

Bn Siddall

November 5, 2013

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