Captain Charles Gandy of the famed 92nd Buffalo Division in the US army will be posthumously honored by the town of Lucca, Italy on September 5th, the 63rd anniversary of the town's liberation from the Nazis. Captain Gandy led his Buffalo Division soldiers and Italian partisans in the liberation. Finmeccanica, which helped research the history of Captain Gandy and track down his family members, will help sponsor the event where Captain Gandy will be given honorary citizenship posthumously. His brother David and son Charles Gandy III, will represent Captain Gandy at the ceremony.
One month after the liberation of Lucca, Captain Gandy was killed in action during the battle to secure the towns of Mazza and La Spezia in the mountains north of Lucca. He held his position during the battle under fierce assault from the German army. He was awarded a Silver Star for heroism.
Captain Gandy’s achievements ─ a decorated soldier and one of the few African-American officers of his day, he was the first African-American to take Nazi soldiers prisoner ─ are an important part of American history and help demonstrate the strong, interlinked history between the United States and Italy. Finmeccanica salutes all Americans who have served and continue to serve in the Armed Forces of the United States, protecting liberty for people around the world.