|Capt. Stefan P. Wesolowski of Miami Beach, Florida was featured in an article in a recent book by Tom Brokaw |
8/1/2002 - The late CAPT. STEFAN P. WESOLOWSKI of Miami Beach, Florida was featured in an article in a recent book by Tom Brokaw, THE GREATEST GENERATION SPEAKS, pages 31-35.
Wesolowski's military career started at the age of 9 when he joined the Polish Army as a volunteer to liberate Lwow from the Soviets and then participated in the 3rd Silesian Uprising and the Polish-Soviet War of 1921. He was decorated with the Polish Order of the Virtuti Militari and the Cross of Valor. At the age of 13 Capt. Wesolowski joined the Polish Navy and also served in the Polish Merchant Marines.
In August of 1939 he was mobilized from the reserves and joined the ORP Blyskawica, the Polish destroyer as a Petty Officer. After various sea battles under the British command in the North Atlantic, Wesolowski was wounded and discharged from the olish Navy. In 1943 he was invited by the US Army Transportation Corps to join as an officer of an American auxiliary aircraft carrier, the USAT Ganandoc. He commanded the ship during the invasion of Normandy and the invasion of Sicily. For his heroic action of saving a convoy, Wesolowski was decorated with the Bronze Star for Valor and other decorations. At that time of his service, Wesolowski was still a Polish citizen, a very rare occurrence that a foreigner commanded an American warship during the time of war.
For additional information, visit www.memoriesofwar.com/veterans/wesolowski