January 25, 1921 (Norwalk, CT) – June 9, 1944; 23 years old
Last local address: 27 Cross Street, Norwalk
Service Number: 31247927
Unit: 4th Infantry Division, 8th Infantry Regiment, Medical Corps

Born to Prospero (1882-1953) and Valentine Cantarella D’Avanzo (1892-1955); both born in Italy. Eight brothers Joseph (1913-1993), Louis (1915-1980), Sylvio (1920-1945), Alfred “Frederick” (1922-1989), Victor (1924-2002), Rudolph (1926-2009), Roland (1928-2011), and Albert (1932-). Four sisters, Jeanette D’Avanzo Sala (1914-2011), Nancy D’Avanzo Maruca (1916-1997), Helen D’Avanzo Beebe (1918-1961), and Gloria D’Avanzo Holomakoff (1933-).

Awarded the Bronze Star Medal and Purple Heart Medal.

Photo provided by Wayne D’Avanzo

Killed 3 days after the start of D-Day. Brother of Sylvio, also KIA in the war in the Philippines. 4th oldest of 8 brothers.

Citation to accompany the award of the Bronze Star Medal

Private Prospero N. D’Avanzo, while serving with the Army of the United States, distinguished himself by meritorious service in connection with military operations against an enemy of the United States at Utah Beach, France. Private D’Avanzo landed on D-Day June 6, 1944, with his Battalion medical section. At the time Private D’Avanzo landed, the enemy was still subjecting the beach to heavy concentrations of mortar fire and there were many wounded on the beach. Medical aid at this stage and medical service rendered depended largely on the individual initiative and efforts of the aidman. Private D’Avanzo repeatedly exposed himself to the heavy shellfire in picking up the wounded and carrying them to the comparative safety of the sea wall where aid could be rendered. Private D’Avanzo was killed instantly by shellfire on 9 June 1944. The accomplishment of the duty for which the award is recommended has been completed.

Approved HQ, 8TH INF, APO 4, US Army, 19 September 1944
Signed by Lucian M. Strawn, Captain, Medical Corps, 8th Infantry
Approved by J.S. Rodwell, Colonel, 8th Infantry, Commanding

From The Norwalk Hour July 18, 1944

Private Prospero N. D’Avanzo, 23, U.S. Army Medical Corps, son of Mr. and Mrs. Prospero D’Avanzo of 132 Flax Hill Road, formerly of 27 Cross Street, was killed in action in France on June 9, according to word received last night by his parents from the War Department. His death occurred three days after the invasion of Normandy. Private D’Avanzo on November 17, 1942, enlisted in the U.S. Marines and was trained at Parris Island, SC. Later, however, he was transferred to the Medical Unit of the Army. In the Army, he trained at Camp Forrest, Tennessee; Camp Breckenridge, Kentucky; and Camp Pickett, Virginia. He went overseas in October 1943. D’Avanzo attended the Center Junior High School where he was an outstanding ball player. Previous to joining the Marines, he was employed as a wire cutter by the E.H. Hotchkiss Company. Besides his parents, Pvt D’Avanzo is survived by eight brothers, and four sisters: Albert, Roland, and Alfred, who received a medical discharge from the Merchant Marines, Corporal Victor, who is in the Army; Tech Sgt Sylvio, a paratrooper; Pvt Rudolph, the Marines; Sgt Louis in an Army Tank Destroyer Unit; Corp Joseph who received a medical discharge from the Army; Gloria, Nancy, Mrs. Helen Beebee, and Mrs. Jeanette Sala.

Buried at Normandy American Cemetery, Rte du Cimetiere Americain, 14710 Colleville-sur-Mer, France; Plot F, Row 8, Grave 14.


Published by jeffd1121

USAF retiree. Veteran advocate. Committed to telling the stories of those who died while in the service of the country during wartime.

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