Skip to main content

Henry Knute Swanson

T/3 in Signal Co, Special : Radio HQ

Military occupational specialty: 648 (radio repairman)


Born 1909 in Sweden, Died 1986

County of residence at enlistment: Solano County, CA
United States Army, European Theatre of Operations
Occupation before the war: semiskilled mechanics and repairmen, n.e.c.
Source: Unit Shipment 10143-D, 23d HQ, from le Havre 23 June 1945;

Henry Swanson was born on November 26, 1909 in Sweden. His family emigrated to the US in 1913 when he was four years old. He completed two or three years of high school and went to work in the oil industry in southern California, employed by Standard Oil.

On November 21, 1929 he married Texas-born Alberta Marie Mourfield, just a month after her 18th birthday, and the young couple took up residence in Fullerton, CA.

In 1932, the Swansons moved to the Marysville/Yuba City area and Henry went to work as a mechanic for the Clyde Williams Chevrolet dealership in Marysville. Marie eventually got a job as a "beauty operator" in a beauty shop.

Henry registered for the draft on October 16, 1940, and enlisted on December 3, 1942. He was assigned to the Signal Company Special as a radio repairman, and served in the European theatre with the unit.

He was discharged on September 26, 1945 with the rank of T/3 and returned to Yuba City. There he returned briefly to Clyde Williams Chevrolet, before parlaying his wartime radio repair experience into a radio repair business in 1947. He and his partner opened Olympic Radio Shop in Marysville which served the residents of the area through at least 1960. By 1953, Clyde was the sole proprietor of Olympic Radio and Television Shop, with seven employees and two shops--one in Marysville and one in Yuba City. The business serviced home and car radios, sold radios and TVs, and installed and serviced TVs. By 1959 the enterprise was known as "Swanson's Olympic Radio."

At the same time he served as commander of the Bishop Langenbach post of the VFW, and Marie had been elected president of the VFW Auxiliary. Henry was also president of the Gas & Electrical Appliances Association.

By 1963, Henry was working as a radio and TV technician at Sears, a job he held through at least 1969. Marie worked as a clerk in a market.

Henry died on August 21, 1986 and he is buried at Sierra View Memorial Park in Olivehurst, CA.


1929 marriage record

1930 census

1931 Orange city directory

1940 census

1940 draft record

1942 enlistment record

1947 Yuba City directory

1948 ad in Independent-Herald (Yuba City CA) re his radio shop

1949 Yuba City directory

1953 article in Independent-Herald (Yuba City CA) re his radio shop business

1963 Yuba City directory

1986 VA death record

1986 Find a Grave record

1986 California death index

Please Support Our Ongoing Efforts

The soldiers of The Ghost Army used inflatable tanks, sound effects, and imagination to fool the Germans on the battlefields of Europe. The Ghost Army Legacy Project is ensuring that these men and their accomplishments are never forgotten.

Give via credit card by clicking the yellow “Donate” button.

Or, send a check to:

Ghost Army Legacy Project
1305 S. Michigan Ave. #1104
Chicago, IL 60605

All donations are tax-deductible!