Near our house here in Connecticut lies a hero. Medal of Honor recepient Patrick Scanlon is buried in St. Mary's Cemetery overlooking the Farmington River. I came upon his grave this morning, appropriately Memorial Day, near the end of an early morning bike ride.
Scanlon, born in Ireland, served with the 4th Massaschusetts Calvary after enlisting in December 1863. A bootmaker from Spencer, Mass., Scanlon was among a group of soldiers who rescued stranded comrades on the steamship Boston on the Ashepoo River in South Carolina on May 24. 1864. Nearly 400 soldiers on the Boston, under heavy fire from a Confederate battery, were rescued. Scanlon was among five soldiers who were awarded the Medal of Honor for their bravery in this action.
Scanlon, whose name on the Medal of Honor marker is spelled Scanlan, died in Farmington, Conn., on Sept. 5, 1903. He was 64.