Norbert Benedict Hamilton Jr.
was born on September 6, 1917, to Norbert Hamilton and Helen Hamilton
who lived at 20 East Washington St. in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Norbert
was one of two children including his sister Elizabeth. Their father
was involved with the founding of Lenape Park, a well-known local amusement
park, 4 miles south of West Chester.
Norbert's father died in 1920,
and his mother later remarried Robert Roundtree. He attended Friends
Community School in West Chester. His family moved to Haverford, Pennsylvania,
and he attended the Haverford School.
Norbert attended Dartmouth
College, in Hanover, New Hampshire. He majored in English, and according
to their yearbook, the "Aegis," Norbert was a member of the
Glee Club, and Theta Delta Chi. He graduated with the class of 1940.
Norbert returned to West Chester and lived in an apartment on West Gay
St. He enlisted in the Army shortly after our county was attacked. He
entered service as a Private and received basic training and advanced
engineer training at Camp Butner, North Carolina. He was then commissioned
as a Second Lieutenant (considering his College Education), and later
promoted to First Lieutenant. On one of his furloughs, he visited his
uncle John V. Gibney who was then the proprietor of Lenape Park.
Norbert married Jeanne Hall
of Pulaski, Virginia (in the South West corner of the State) on March
20, 1943. She stayed with her parents when Norbert was sent overseas.
Norbert was sent overseas to
the European Theater of Operations in January 1944. He served with Company
I, 180th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division.
First Lieutenant Norbert Hamilton
Jr. was Killed In Action in France on August 15th, 1944. He was buried
at the Rhone American Cemetery in Draguignan, France. Norbert was awarded
the Silver Star, our Country's third highest award, the Infantry Medal
for exemplary conduct in Action (in an earlier battle), as well as the
His Silver Star Citation reads:
For Gallantry in action on August 15, 1944 near -------------France.
While his company attacked enemy positions on a thickly wood mountain,
the assault platoons by-passed an enemy machine gunner and sniper. When
the machine gunner opened fire on the company headquarters from close
range, First Lieutenant Hamilton engaged the enemy machine gunner with
his carbine and hand grenades allowing the headquarters group time to
take cover. Wile a support squad was being brought up, First Lieutenant
Hamilton kept the enemy machine gunner pinned down with accurate carbine
fire. He was killed by the sniper who protected the machine gun nest,
but his courage in single-handedly engaging the enemy machine gunner
prevented the latter from inflicting further casualties on the company
command group. First Lieutenant Hamilton's actions reflect the high
traditions of the Army of the United States.
The citation blanks out the location, but the 45th Division history
lists Ste-Maxime-sur-Mer, (on the southern coast of France on the Mediterranean
Sea, west of Nice) as the location Division's command post on August