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    Seabees, Russell Islands, Banika Island. Naval Constr. Battalion Detachment #1009

    7th Army, 3rd Infantry Div., 10th Engineer Combat Battalion, Company C.

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  1. wblcrb2

    Conducting research - Edward W Lawson - Engineer

    Since my last posting, we have found additional information. First, I did confirm that Edward W Lawson had married three times and had children from each marriage. He divorced his first wife (my mother in law) and then married again in January 1943 and again in June 1943 (this time without a divorce.) Edward W. Lawson's military records and some additional letters furnished by his children gave us this history. February 3, 1942, Edward W. Lawson enlisted in the U.S. Army in Seattle, Washington. He enlisted as a private and he was sent to Camp Roberts near Paso Robles, California for training from March through August 1942. He earned his Qualification in arms: Marksman, rifle, March 25, 1942. He was promoted to Corporal, August 17, 1942. On August 20, 1942, Edward W. Lawson started Engineer Officer Candidate School at Fort Belvoir, Va. On November 10, 1942, he received an Honorable Discharge as a Corporal, Company F, 2nd Engineer School Regiment. The discharge was to accept his commission and immediate active duty in the Army as a 2nd Lt. His graduation from EOCS was November 11, 1942. In January 1943 Edward was stationed a Camp Edwards in Massachusetts. In June 1943 he was back near or at Fort Belvoir, Va. We do not know when he went to Europe, but he was part of the 7th Army, 3rd Infantry Division, 10th Engineer Combat Battalion, Company C. He was wounded November 20, 1944. On January 10th, 1945 a casualty list released by the war department listed Lieutenant Edward W. Lawson as losing his life in the battles of Normandy. On January 11, 1945 the newspaper headline read " Lt. Lawson Back on Duty in France." The article corrects its story from the day before with corrections from his wife (2nd wife) in San Mateo, Ca. Edward Lawson had been wounded November 20, 1944 and hospitalized. He had received a purple heart, and at the time of the article he had recovered sufficiently to return to duty. 2nd Lt Edward W Lawson was awarded the Silver Star (Posthumously). The citation read as follows: "SILVER STAR" For gallantry in action. During the early morning hours of 19 March 1945, near Minschweiler, Germany, when it became necessary to provide a tank route over two anti-tank barriers well on the enemy side of the "Dragons Teeth" of the Siegfried Line, Second Lieutenant Lawson, displaying superb leadership, inspired his men who completed the job in record time. Disdaining the bullets that swept the area and nebelwerfer shells dropping all around him, Second Lieutenant Lawson remained in the open, setting the example for his men who breached the barriers and provided an important route for our armor." "Death of 2nd Lt. Edward W. Lawson" On March 27, 1945, 2nd Lt. Edward W. Lawson was killed in action in Germany. Mary Lawson, his second wife received the following information in a letter dated April 26, 1945 from a Army Chaplain. "According to a fellow officer, Lieutenant Lawson had gone on a reconnaissance mission. He approached an enemy position and a machine gun opened fire. He was instantly killed by a bullet which struck him in the chest. Your husband was a good officer and leader of men. His excellent character and devotion to duty had won the esteem of all who knew him." We are still researching and hopefully will find more details about his life. Willet Bushnell
  2. wblcrb2

    Conducting research - Edward W Lawson - Engineer

    This week we learned a little more about Edward W Lawson. We received 112 pages of information about the disposition of his remains. First the facts. My Mother in law was married to Edward W Lawson in the 1930's and had three children by him. They were getting a divorce when he enlisted in the Army in Feb. 1942 and the divorce was final in July 1942. Edward W Lawson married Mary L sometime in 1942.. and then married Doris A. in 1943. whoops!! Mary L. was notified of his death, but no one else, because Mary L. did not know Edwards Mother was living or that he had been married before. When Edward's mother wrote the Army and found out her son was killed in action, she requested his belongings. The mother also notified my mother-in-law, who did not know he had died, but was aware he had been wounded several times. He had 3 purple hearts. Mary L, Doris A. and Edward's mother wrote letters requesting Edward's personal belongings and to have his body brought back to the states. It took a "court marshall" hearing to resolve the belongings issue in the favor of Mary L. in late 1945. In his belongings were letters and personal items. Maybe including letters and gifts from his third wife. By 1948, Mary L had remarried, so she let Edward's mother determine where Edward W Lawson would be buried. Arlington National Cemetery. All these letters from the Army and the Mother and wife's were in the burial documentation. Among his personal belongings were: 1 Engr. insignia; a 2nd Lt. bar; 5 Overseas bars; 3 Purple Heart Ribbons; 1 Silver Star Ribbon; 1 Soldier's Medal ribbon; and 1 Unit Citation ribbon . The information also shows he was with the 345th Engineers and at the time of his death he was with Co. C 10th Engineer Combat Battalion. His mothers letters state that he entered the Army in March 1942 and trained at Camp Roberts, California until 20 Sep 1942, then he went to Fort Belvoir, Va. for Corp of Engineer training. His Death certificate states that his active service started 11 Nov 1942, so we are assuming that is when he became a 2nd Lt. We are hoping to get more information through a freedom on information request. Will keep you posted. Why would he have 5 Overseas bars? Willet Bushnell
  3. wblcrb2

    Conducting research - Edward W Lawson - Engineer

    Marion, The History of the Third Infantry Division in WWII does have the Silver Medal Award list and it also has the roster of the 10th Combat Engineers and many more. The Ancestry tree you found is a tree kept by a historian preparing for our cities 100 aniv. in 2017. You can also find the Edward Lawson on the tree maintained by me : willet122. We will follow up on the NARA. Thanks Willet Bushnell
  4. wblcrb2

    Conducting research - Edward W Lawson - Engineer

    The attached photo is was sent to Edward's wife in 1944 from Europe. He is in the back row, second from the left side of the picture. The quality is poor, but it is the only version I have at this time. Willet Bushnell
  5. wblcrb2

    Conducting research - Edward W Lawson - Engineer

    Marion, Thank you for your assistance . We just found out last week that Edward W. Lawson was awarded the Silver Star. It does confirm that he was part of the 10th Engineer Combat Battalion. Edward enlisted in Alaska, but the Army offices were in Seattle, so therefore is shows as a Washington enlistment. He enlisted as a private in February 1942, and reported for duty sometime later. He was in Newport News, VA when he was married, and was a 2nd Lieutenant on the marriage record. He was still in the states in Feb or Mar 1944. We assume that he would have gone to boot camp, engineer training, and engineer OCS. But cannot locate if records of the Fort Belvoir classes are still around. Willet Bushnell