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Patrick, Edwin Daviess (1894-1944)


Photograph of Edwin D. Patrick

U.S. Army. Via alamoscouts.org

Patrick was a former National Guardsman who received a commission and served in France in the St. Mihiel and Meuse-Argonne offensives of the First World War. He served as chief of staff of 6 Army and commanded task forces at Wakde and Noemfoor. During the Noemfoor operation, he concluded on the basis of faulty intelligence that there was a substantial Japanese force hidden in the island interior, which prompted him to request a drop of paratroop reinforcements. The drop was a near fiasco.

Given command of 6 Division in the second Luzon campaign, Patrick was initially deeply skeptical of the value of close air support (quoted in Garand and Strowbridge 1971):

He (the general) was scared of airplanes; that is, scared of their accuracy and lack of ground control. He was polite but absolutely firm.

However, Patrick reversed his opinion and become a staunch advocate of close air support after witnessing the effectiveness of an air strike in February 1945.

Patrick's chief of staff later claimed that Patrick was a reckless commander, particularly when drunk, which was allegedly much of the time (Hastings 2007). His recklessness eventually cost him his life, when he exposed himself to enemy fire at the front line and was promptly hit by a Japanese machine gunner.

Service record

1894-1-11     

Born at Tell City, Indiana
1915-2-11

Enlists in Indiana National Guard
1917-3-21     
Second lieutenant     
Commissioned in the infantry
1926-5

15 Infantry, Tientsin
1938
Colonel     
Assistant chief of staff, 8 Corps Area
1942-12

Commander, 357 Regiment
1943-4-26     
Brigadier general     
Chief of staff, 6 Army
1944-9
Major general     
Commander, 6 Division
1944-11-26     

Dies of wounds received in action

References

Garand and Strowbridge (1971; accessed 2012-10-5)

Generals.dk (accessed 2008-11-21)

Hastings (2007)

Naval Historical Center (accessed 2008-11-21)

Smith (1952; accessed 2012-10-5)



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