#VeteranOfTheDay Army Veteran Charles James Thomsen



Army Veteran Charles James Thomsen is today's Veteran of the Day.

Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army Veteran Charles James Thomsen, who served from 1911 to 1914, and again in World War I from 1917 to 1919.

Charles James Thomsen grew up in New Jersey and first enlisted in the Army on March 11, 1911, at Fort Slocum, New Jersey. There he served with Company A of the First Battalion of Engineers in Washington, D.C. In June 1913 Thomsen qualified as an expert marksman. The Army discharged him in March 1914 with “character excellent” at the rank of corporal. Before the end of his first enlistment, Thomsen expressed in letters home his desire to enter Federal Engineering after his time in the service. While a civilian, Thomsen’s occupation was as a civil engineer in New York City.

When the United States entered World War I, Thomsen re-enlisted in June 1917 at Fort Totten, New York, in the 11th Engineers, Railways.  The following July, Thomsen became a sergeant in Company C of the 11th Engineers.

Arriving in France in August 1917. Thomsen served with the British 5th Army at the Battle of Cambrai in November where he worked with standard gauge railways and railroad guns. Thomsen then earned a commission through the U.S. Infantry at Army Candidates School. When he joined the American Expeditionary Force in May 1918 he commissioned as a second lieutenant. Assigned to the 107th Engineers, Thomsen defended the Alsace sector and then fought in the Aisne-Marne offensive in July to August, where he was slightly wounded. He also fought in the Oise-Aisne and Meuse-Argonne offensives.

When the war ended, Thomsen continued to serve in the Army of occupation until returning to the United States in June 1919. On June, 27, 1919 Charles received his Honorable Discharge at the rank of first lieutenant.  In his Officer’s Record Book, other officers wrote that Thomsen’s “work has always been eminently satisfactory.”

Thomsen passed away in 1921 at the age of 28.

We honor his service.


Nominate a Veteran for #VeteranOfTheDay

Do you want to light up the face of a special Veteran? Have you been wondering how to tell your Veteran they are special to you? VA’s #VeteranOfTheDay social media feature is an opportunity to highlight your Veteran and his/her service.

It’s easy to nominate a Veteran. All it takes is an email to newmedia@va.gov with as much information as you can put together, along with some good photos. Visit our blog post about nominating to learn how to create the best submission.

Veterans History Project

This #VeteranOfTheDay profile was created with interviews submitted to the Veterans History Project. The project collects, preserves, and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war Veterans so that future generations may hear directly from Veterans and better understand the realities of war. Find out more at http://www.loc.gov/vets/.


Contributors

Editor: Ashley Levi

Fact checker: Vivian Hurney

Graphic artist: Deanna Cannon

Author

Nathan Giacalone

Nathan Giacalone is a senior at the University of Massachusetts Amherst majoring in history and political science with a certificate in international relations. He is a writing intern with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Comments

  1. Senior Veterans Care Network    

    We honor the service of Charles James Thomsen.

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