Scanlan, Charles F. (607th)

Charles F. Scanlan 1Charles F. Scanlan

Biography: Charles Francis Scanlan was born on July 13, 1910, in West De Pere, Wisconsin. He was one of two sons and two daughters born to Dennis R. Scanlan and Sarah L. Clorn. In 1910, the family moved to Malden, Washington and in 1913, they moved to Spokane, WA.

He graduated from Lewis and Clark High School in 1928, and continued his education, receiving his bachelor degree from Gonzaga University and then his LLB degree from Gonzaga University Law School, in 1940. While attending law school, he worked as a bank messenger for Old National Bank and Union Trust Company. He was admitted to practice in the State of Washington in February, 1940.

Service Time: Charles entered the Army on March 17, 1942, at Fort Lewis, WA, and was assigned to Company A of the 607th Tank Destroyer Battalion. He was later transferred to Headquarters Company and worked in the Personnel Section.

Arriving at Liverpool, England, on April 21, 1944, they continued training. Part of Headquarters Company and Company A disembarked at Utah Beach on June 17, with the remainder of the battalion arriving on June 23. They supported the advance on Cherbourg, fighting along the Seves River in July. Participating in the drive to Le Mans and envelopment of the Falaise Pocket in August, they advanced to the Moselle River in September and supported operations against Metz through November, converting to a self-propelled battalion equipped with M36 tank destroyers in time for the final assault.

Charles F. Scanlan 2Joining the drive toward the Saar River and capture of Saarlautern followed by the subsequent fight against the Siegfried Line in December. Deployed to the Ardennes sector in January, 1945 and again committed against the Siegfried Line in February in the Schnee Eifel. Supporting the capture of Koblenz in mid-March. they crossed the Rhine River at Boppard on March 25. The unit continued to drive east through Hessen and Thüringen during April and reached the Czechoslovak border near Plauen by mid-April. Thereafter, they remained in defensive positions until VE Day.  On July 12, Charles was transferred to the 602nd Tank Destroyer Battalion but on September 10th, he was transferred back to the 607th and returned home with the unit.  He left the service at the rank of Technician Grade 5.

Charles returned to the U.S. on November 6, 1945. At some point, he married Mary Ann, they didn’t have any children. Charles practiced private law in the Spokane area from 1946 to 1985. He was admitted to practice in the Supreme Court of the United States in 1950 and served as president of the Spokane County Bar Association in 1956. In 1958, he was elected to the board of governors of the Washington State Bar Association for the Fifth Congressional District, serving for seven years.

He was a member of Our Lady of Lourdes Roman Catholic Church Cathedral, a member and past Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus Council 683 and past faithful navigator of the 4th Degree, Spokane Assembly, Knights of Columbus. He served several years on the board of Catholic Charities and had been active with St. Vincent De Paul and the Holy Names Society.

Charles F. Scanlan 3Charles passed away on April 21, 1989 and was buried in the Holy Cross Cemetery, Spokane, WA. We want to thank Stan Pierson III, for providing the photos used in this tribute. Thanks also to Find-a-Grave contributor Jim Lee for the grave marker photo.