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Colonel
Lansing McVickar
Born (1895-09-20)September 20, 1895
Died February 24, 1945(1945-02-24) (aged 49)
Place of birth New London, Connecticut, US
Place of death Luxembourg
Buried at Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1918 - 1945
Rank Colonel
Service number O-061537
Unit 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery, 1st Division
44th Infantry Division Headquarters
80th Infantry Division
Commands held 156th Field Artillery Regiment
318th Infantry Regiment
Battles/wars

Mexican Border War
World War I

  • Montdidier-Noyon
  • Aisne-Marne
  • St. Mihiel
  • Meuse-Argonne
  • Lorraine 1917
  • Lorraine 1918
  • Picardy 1918

World War II

  • Northern France
  • Rhineland
  • Ardennes-Alsace
  • Central Europe
  • Battle of the Bulge
  • Battle of Falaise Gap
Awards
Other work stockbroker with Henry L. McVikar

Lansing McVickar (September 20, 1895 – January 14, 1945) was a career officer with the United States Army.[1] He was highly decorated for his service in World War II, World War I, and the Mexican Border War, including receiving a Bronze Star Medal and the Distinguished Service Cross.[2][3]

Early life

McVickar was born in New London, Connecticut, the son of Janet Lansing and Henry Goelet McVickar.[3][4] The family also lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts and Suffolk County, New York.[1] His material grandfather was Captain A. Breeze Lansing.[4] His paternal grandfather was William Henry McVickar, a former commodore of the New York Yacht Club.[5] His father died in 1919, followed by his mother in 1929.[4]

He attended St. Mark's School, graduating in 1914.[6] Next he attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, graduating in 1918.[3] There, he was a member of the Fraternity of Delta Psi (St. Anthony Hall).[3]

Military career

McVickar joined Battery A of the Massachusetts National Guard and participated in the Mexican Border War.[3] He then began Army training at Plattsburgh Military Base.[3] He served as a second lieutenant in the 7th Field Artillery, 1st Division; he was later promoted to first lieutenant in the Headquarters, 1st Battalion, 1st Division, American Expeditionary Forces.[3][7][8] During World War I, he was severely wounded in August 1918.[9] On October 14, 1918, near Véry, France, he volunteered to take a gun to aid the infantry under "hazardous circumstances."[7][10] He persisted despite the loss of two horses and several wounded men.[7][10] When the group was under a barrage from the enemy, he came out from protective cover five times to move wounded comrades to safety.[10][7] As a result, he received the Distinguished Service Cross "for extraordinary heroism."[7] During World War I, he also received the Purple Heart and the Silver Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Croix de Guerre.[3][5]

Through the National Guard, he reached the rank of colonel.[3] In September 1940, he was named commander of the 156th Field Artillery of the New York National Guard.[11] The 156th was inducted into federal service at that time, with an assignment for Fort Dix in New Jersey.[11] In October 1941, McVickar was assigned to the 44th Division Headquarters.[12]

In 1944, he was in command of the 318th Regiment which spearheaded General George S. Patton's battles in France.[13] In the Battle of Falaise Gap, the 318th played a prominent role. On November 11, 1944, under his leadership the 318th was one of two regiments that captured Delme Ridge in the Nancy-Metz area.[3][13] As a result, the 318th received a unit citation and he received the Bronze Star in December 1944.[3][13] They received another citation for breaking through the Maginot Line in Saarbrücken, Germany in December 1944.[13] In late December 1944 during the Battle of the Bulge, Patton's 80th division relieved Bastogne, Belgium, spearheaded by the 318th under McVickar.[14] This relieved the 101st Airborne Division which was encircled by the Germans.[13]

In December 1944, the Americans were in continuous action west and southwest of Ettelbruck, Luxembourg.[1] Under the leadership of McVickar, they freed Ettlebruck from Nazi occupation on Christmas Day 1944.[1] A few weeks later, McVickar was shot and killed while on a scouting mission.[1]

Commendations

Honors

  • The is a memorial dedicated to McVickar at the entrance of Ettelbruck, Luxembourg.[1]
  • The General Patton Memorial Museum in Ettelbruck, Luxembourg features McVickar's portrait and an exhibit covering his role in liberating the town and in the country's war history.[15]

Personal life

After World War I, McVickar became a stockbroker in New York City with his brother's firm Henry L. McVikar of 11 Wall Street.[2][16][17] He was a member of the Racquet and Tennis Club of New York.[3]

In Paris on October 17, 1925, McVickar married Frederika Peterson Jessup of New York.[16][5] She was the daughter of Dr. Frederick Peterson, president of the Neurological Association of America, and had divorced Theodore Jessup in Paris in July 1925.[17][5] She had two sons and two daughters from her prior marriage.[5] No announcement was made before to the wedding and only a few close friends attended.[5] However, a secret service man was on duty during the wedding to guard the jewels and gifts that were on display.[16] The couple took a driving tour of the Italian lake district for their honeymoon, and returned to New York City on November 3 aboard the SS Leviathan.[16] They had two children: John Anthony McVickar and Louise McVickar.[18] They lived in Southampton, Long Island and Palm Beach, Florida.[18]

In 1926, he was a groomsman for Louis Gordon Hamersley, the richest bachelor in New York, when he married Hilles Morris.[19] However, his marriage failed by 1932 when he was living in Southampton, Long Island and Palm Beach, Florida without Frederika.[18]

In December 1930, McVickar was sued for $25,000 by dancer Elizabeth Furst who claimed she had been injured when he moved his car while she was leaning on it on August 15, 1928.[17] She said that McVickar and banker Harding Woodall kept her at the latter's hotel apartment overnight instead of taking her to the hospital.[17] Furst sustained cuts, bruises, and a broken wrist which she said ruined her dancing career.[17] She waited to sue because she thought McVickar would eventually pay for her ruined dress and hospital bill.[17] McVickar denied the charges, indicating the Furst caused her own injuries.[17] At the same time, she sued Frederick D. Underwood, former president of the Erie Railroad and father of her former fiancé, for $100,000 for slander.[17]

McVickar later married Erna-Marie.[3] They lived in Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island.[14] After his death in combat in 1945, McVickar was buried at the Luxembourg American Cemetery in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg.[1]

References

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 "Lansing McVickar : Colonel from Connecticut, World War II Casualty". https://www.honorstates.org/index.php?id=347594. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 "Seaman's Father Killed in Action". The Ithaca Journal (Ithaca, New York). February 16, 1945. pp. 2. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99760081/mcvickar/. 
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.19 "Col. McVickar, Hero of 2 Wars, Killed". The New York Times. February 9, 1945. pp. 7. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1945/02/09/305596442.pdf?pdf_redirect=true&ip=0. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "Mrs. J. L. M'Vickar". Times Union (Brooklyn, New York). November 8, 1929. pp. 60. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99757209/. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 "Mrs. Theodore Jessup Weds Mr. Lansing McVickar". Scarsdale Inquirer. November 28, 1925. pp. 10. https://news.hrvh.org/veridian/?a=d&d=scarsdaleinquire19251128.2.69&e=-------en-20--1--txt-txIN-------. 
  6. "St. Mark's Prize Day". Boston Evening Transcript. June 15, 1914. pp. 4. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99755581/mcviackar/. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 "Lasing M'Vickar Cited for Bravery". The New York Times. March 19, 1919. pp. 8. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1919/03/19/102852342.pdf?pdf_redirect=true&ip=0. 
  8. "Lansing McVickar - Recipient -" (in en). http://valor.militarytimes.com/hero/13571. 
  9. "Honor Roll: Wounded Severely". The Enid Daily Eagle (Enid, Oklahoma). September 2, 1918. pp. 3. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99755815/mcvickar/. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 "New York Gunner Gets Valor Cross". New York Herald. March 19, 1919. pp. 7. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99756127/. 
  11. 11.0 11.1 "McVickar Named Guard Commander". The Kingston Daily Freeman (Kingston, New York). September 14, 1940. pp. 9. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99757684/. 
  12. "McVickar Shifted". Middletown Times Herald (Middletown, New York). November 8, 1941. pp. 4. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99758492/. 
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 "Col. McVickar Dies in Action". Daily News (New York, New York). February 9, 1945. pp. 187. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99759317/mcvickar/. 
  14. 14.0 14.1 "Elgin General Aided Bastogne". Lincoln Journal Star (Lincoln, Nebraska). December 29, 1944. pp. 1. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99758715/. 
  15. "General Patton Memorial Museum" (in en). https://izi.travel/en/6fcd-general-patton-memorial-museum/en#cc78-general-george-s-patton-jr-and-colonel-lansing-mcvickar/en. 
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 "Secret Service Man to Guard Wedding Presents". Journal Gazette (Mattoon, Illinois). October 18, 1925. pp. 1. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99766576/. 
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 17.4 17.5 17.6 17.7 Albelli, Alfred (December 21, 1930). "Dancer, Thrown from Auto, Asks $25,000 from Broker". Daily News (New York, New York). pp. 3. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99769341/. 
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 "Palm Beach". Hartford Courant (Hartford, Connecticut). December 18, 1932. pp. 24. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99769625/. 
  19. "Louis G. Hamersley Names Attendants for His Marriage". Daily News (New York, New York). October 4, 1926. pp. 75. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/99756558/. 

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