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Pierre Jeanpierre
Nickname Jardin (resistance alias)
Born (1912-03-14)March 14, 1912
Died May 29, 1958(1958-05-29) (aged 46)
Place of birth Belfort, France
Place of death Guelma, French Algeria
Allegiance France
Service/branch French Army
Years of service 1930-1958
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Commands held 1st Foreign Parachute Regiment
Battles/wars World War II
First Indochina War
Suez Crisis
Algerian War

Pierre Paul Jeanpierre (14 March 1912 – 29 May 1958) was a French Army officer. He fought during World War II, the First Indochina War, the Suez Crisis and the Algerian War, where he was killed in action. Apart from a short time in the French resistance, he served exclusively with French Foreign Legion units, most notably as commander of the 1st Foreign Parachute Regiment.

Biography

He joined the 131st Infantry Regiment as private in 1930 and worked his way up, graduating from officer school in 1936. He was made Second Lieutenant in 1937 in the 1st Foreign Regiment of the French Foreign Legion. After World War II started in 1939, he served in the 6th Foreign Regiment, deployed in Levant.

He refused to join the Free French Forces, instead chose to return to the Legion in Marseilles. There he joined the French Resistance after the invasion of the free zone by German and Italian forces in November 1942 (Operation Anton). He was taken prisoner in 1944 and interred in the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp.

After the war ended, he rejoined the legion and volunteered to serve in the Foreign Legion parachute units. He sailed to Indochina as second-in-command to Pierre Segrétain in the 1st Foreign Parachute Battalion (1er BEP) in 1948. During the evacuation of RC 4, he and the battalion jumped over That Khe. He took over much of the leadership of the battalion after the commander was crippled. It was Jeanpierre who led the 29 survivors of the battalion who managed to escape to French lines. Evacuated to Algeria to recover, he returned to Indochina to command the reformed 1st Foreign Parachute Battalion after its second annihilation at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu.

After the battalion became a regiment he was passed over for command, instead serving again as second-in-command, this time to Colonel Albert Brothier. He took command of the regiment in March, 1957. He was killed in action in a helicopter crash on 29 May 1958.

Decorations

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