Saturday, August 27, 2016

PVT Robert Vastine Tennesen

courtesy of Dana

PVT Robert Vastine Tennesen was born 29 Sep 1924 in West Nanticoke, Pennsylvania. He was the 2nd of 5 children born to Thomas Edward and Agetha G. (Vastine) Tennesen. His father was working as a coal miner in 1930 and the family was living at 68 West Poplar Street in West Nanticoke, Pennsylvania which they rented at $15 a month from Agetha's brother. By 1940 they had moved next door to 70 West Poplar, a home that was valued at $2000 but Thomas was supporting his family on a reported 1939 income of $216. Robert only completed 2-years of high school. When he registered for the draft in 1942, he had moved to Burlington, New Jersey and gone to work for Materease Brothers or United Aero Products in Burlington. 

Robert was drafted in August 1943. After completing his basic military training he was sent to the European theater and assigned to B Company 116th Infantry. He was briefly hospitalized in January 1944 for a severe cold. He was hospitalized again in June 1944 for an ear infection. PVT Tennesen was killed in action on 27 Aug 1944 in the effort to drive the Germans out of the city of Brest, France.

PVT Tennesen was repatriated in 1948 and re-interred in the Beverly National Cemetery in Beverly, New Jersey. 

We should note that Robert's date of birth and his unit of assignment on his headstone are incorrect both likely due to a clerical error but he might have been assigned to the 253rd Infantry before being assigned to the 116th. 

Robert's brother, Melvin Ray Tennesen, also served in the U.S. Army during WW2.

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