Wedemeyer, Albert Dunbar, CPT

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Last Rank
Last Service Branch
Last Primary MOS
1542-Infantry Unit Commander
Last MOS Group
Infantry (Officer)
Primary Unit
1950-1953, 1542, HHC, 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry
Service Years
1946 - 1954



Two Overseas Service Bars

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
District Of Columbia
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by the Site Administrator to remember Wedemeyer, Albert Dunbar, CPT.
Contact Info
Home Town
Washington, DC
Last Address
Vienna, Virginia

Date of Passing
May 05, 2006
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Plot: Sec: 30, Site: 582 RH

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 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Albert Dunbar Wedemeyer was born at Walter Reed Hospital, the son of LT and Mrs. Albert C. Wedemeyer of nearby Ft. Washington, MD, and Al spent most of his boyhood on Army posts in the U.S. and abroad. Like many “Army brats,” he eagerly considered going to West Point and serving in the Army.

Following graduation from Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, DC, Al entered West Point on 1 Jul 1943. He had relatively few problems with the military and disciplinary aspects of West Point, but he struggled with many of the math-heavy courses and was well down in class ranking. At graduation, he selected Infantry. After the Infantry Officers Basic Course, he reported to Germany for his first assignment: platoon leader in the 18th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division. The best result from this assignment was meeting Dorothy Davenport, the daughter of COL and Mrs. Harold A. Davenport. Dorothy later became Al’s wife.

After three years in Germany, Al was assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division at Ft. Benning, GA. By this time, the Korean War had broken out, and the 3rd Division was supplying replacements for U.S. units in Korea. Arriving at Camp Fuji, Japan, Al was assigned as a platoon leader in the 17th Regiment, 7th Infantry Division, which took part in the Inchon Landing. The 17th Infantry then moved across Korea against the remnants of the fleeing North Korean Army. The 17th was once again placed in LSTs (Landing Ship, Tank) in Pusan and sent northward to land in Iwon, North Korea. Moving further north, they encountered bit­ter cold weather but limited enemy resistance. In late November 1950, the regiment became the only major Allied unit to reach the Yalu River. GEN MacArthurs plane flew over the regiment and dipped its wings to acknowl­edge their accomplishment.

Shortly thereafter, Chinese Communist forces entered North Korea, and the 17th Infantry retreated southward to the Hungnam-Hamhung perimeter and took part in the subsequent evacuation of U.N. forces. The regiment disembarked at Pusan, was refitted, and went back to the front lines. The regiment also acquired a dynamic new commander—COL William Quinn—who added luster to the regiment’s history. During this period, Al served as an assistant battal­ion S-3 and as the battalion S-2. He became a rifle company commander shortly before the Chinese launched their offensive in the spring of 1951. The 17th Regiment partici­pated in many major actions, which resulted in Al’s being awarded both a Silver Star and a Bronze Star for Valor.

Al then attended the Infantry Officers Advanced Course before serving in the G-2 Office in the Pentagon, working on Soviet order of battle. On 27 Dec 1952, Al and Dottie married and later had two sons and a daughter. In 1954, Al decided to try some­thing different and resigned his commission.

In early 1958, Al joined the Central Intelligence Agency and trained to become a case officer in the Directorate of Operations. During his first three years there, he was involved in psychological warfare opera­tions against Eastern European nations. He was then drafted into the Latin American Division and during 1963—66 was assigned in Caracas, Venezuela, operating against the Communist-led Armed Forces National Liberation (FALN). In his operations, Al obtained some lucky breaks that led to the capture of two top terrorist leaders, for which he was awarded the Intelligence Medal of Merit.

From 1966—69 he worked in Santiago, Chile, against a different type of enemy: a communist/socialist alliance that sought to elect a leftist president. Al’s efforts against this leftist coalition also were successful. After re­turning from Chile, Al was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and treated at the National Institutes of Health. As he recovered from his radiation treatments, Al spent the next five years at CIA Headquarters, working in positions of increasing responsibility in the Latin American Division.

As the Panama Canal Treaty negotia­tions began, Al was selected to be the Chief of Station there. The station was credited with making a real contribution during these successful negotiations. One of the less pleas­ant aspects of his work in Panama was deal­ing with Panama’s G-2 at the time—COL Manuel Noriega! Returning from Panama in 1977, Al served on the Intelligence Community Staff before becoming deputy chief of the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff.

In 1982, Al served as the Deputy Division Chief of the Latin American Division, which was expanding again due to the Nicaraguan/Central American insurgency. In his memoirs, Duane Clarridge, Chief of the Latin American Division, described Al as “knowledgeable and unflappable...a gentleman.” Clarridge credited Al for “great professional and personal service,” saying “I concentrated on Central America, and he handled most of the rest.” Al was rewarded in 1983 by being made the Chief of Station in Mexico—the most prestigious assignment in Latin America. It was the high point of his career. In 1986, he returned to the U.S. and retired, although he continued working on part-time trouble­shooting assignments. In November 1990, Al was asked to serve as an ombudsman on the CIA’s Iraqi Task Force and did so until May 1991. Al said this assignment was truly his “last hurrah!”

Al had moved out to a family property in Boyds, MD, that he and Dottie had both enjoyed. Unfortunately, in July 1992, Dottie died of cardiac arrest. Three years later, Al was introduced by a mutual friend to a Foreign Service widow named Irma Springer. Six months later, they were married and spent ten happy years together.

Al is survived by his wife Irma; sons Albert S. and William K. Wedemeyer and daugh­ter Carol W. Humphries; brother Robert Wedemeyer of Nuevo Colombia, Paraguay; seven granddaughters; and a grandson. His family, friends, and classmates are sustained by their fond and enduring memories of Al, a dear and special person who greatly enriched their lives with much joy and happiness.
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 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 1st Award

 Unit Assignments
1st Battalion, 17th Infantry
  1950-1953, 1542, HHC, 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1946-1949 US Occupation of Germany (WWII)
  1950-1953 Korean War
 Colleges Attended 
United States Military Academy
  1942-1946, United States Military Academy
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