Called to Serve, Volunteered to Deploy

Cardinal Edwin Frederick O’Brien


Cardinal Edwin Frederick O’Brien was called to be a Catholic Priest at a young age and was ordained when he was 26. His first assignment was as a civilian Priest at the United States Military Academy. After serving at West Point for 5 years during the height of the Vietnam War, he felt compelled to volunteer for duty as an Army Chaplain. After being commissioned, he was first stationed at Fort Bragg with the 82nd Airborne Division, before deploying with the 173rd Airborne Brigade. In Vietnam, he once again volunteered, this time to extend his tour and was reassigned to the 1st Cavalry Division. Upon returning from Vietnam, he was assigned to Fort Gordon, Georgia. Currently Cardinal O’Brien is the Cardinal-Deacon of San Sebastiano al Palatino in Rome Italy, and Grand Master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem.


conflicts Vietnam War Iraq War
topics Camaraderie Faith and Religion Morale West Point History
interviewer David Siry
date 29 September 2015


name Cardinal Edwin Frederick O’Brien
institution St. Joseph Seminary
graduation year 1965
service Chaplain
unit 82nd Airborne Division , 173rd Airborne Brigade, & 3rd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division
service dates 1965