Manierre, Jr, Cyrus “Cy” Edson, born on 30-08-1919 in Chicago, Illinois, a city where his family had deep and lasting roots. He was the son of Cyrus Edson and Edith Harrison Manierre. His maternal grandfather, Carter Henry Harrison, served as Mayor of Chicago for five terms, as did his great-grandfather. Cy’s early years were spent in Lake Forest where he attended the Bell School, and then The Hill School in Pottsdown, PA.
After entering the U.S. Military Academy in 1938, Cy spent a bright and cheery four years as a Cadet, never actively seeking recognition by either the Tactical or the Academic Department. He was still one of only thirty-five of the class of 1942 selected to be a Cadet instructor his First Class year, introducing Plebes to the mysteries of the French language while continuing his own academic pursuits, thanks to supplemental night classes.
There was never any question about Cy’s choice of branch upon graduation in 1942— it was Cavalry all the way, reflecting Cy’s deep affection for horses and equitation, as well as his unfailing search for action and challenge. He first attended a preflight course and then the Parachute School, earning his jump qualification at a time when the Office of Strategic Services was recruiting prospects to help pave the way for the still distant invasion. Such an assignment was a natural for Cy; so he became a member of the Jedburgh Team, destination France. Operation Jedburgh was a clandestine operation during World War II, in which personnel of the British Special Operations Executive, the U.S. Office of Strategic Services, the Free French Bureau Central de Renseignements et d’Action (“Intelligence and operations central bureau”) and the Dutch and Belgian Armies were dropped by parachute into Nazi-occupied France, Holland and Belgium to conduct sabotage and guerilla warfare, and to lead the local resistance forces in actions against the Germans.
In June 1944 he parachuted into France and spent two successful months with the Maquis, blowing up troop trains and power plants. However, he was captured out of uniform by the Gestapo and threatened with death as a spy. Persuasiveness and a lot of luck saved Cy; he was able to convince his captors that he was a pilot who was trying to escape after being shot down.The Germans sent him off to Stalag Luft I in Barth where one of the first men he met was his younger brother, a pilot who really had been shot down. They spent ten months together in camp before being liberated by the Russians. Cy returned to the states in June 1945, attended the Command and General Staff College, and was assigned to the Pentagon.
On 20-06-1946, Cy married Nancy Redmond at The Plains, VA. During the next twenty-eight years, Nancy’s personality, wit and wisdom brought strength, life and substance to a happy marriage.
Beckoned to civilian life by attractive postwar prospects, Cy left active duty as a Lieutenant Colonel, Military Intelligence. During the first years of Cy’s civilian career, he worked for the Continental Illinois Bank and Trust Company in Chicago, but in 1950 he moved to Virginia where he bought a farm and an interest in a horse-vanning business.
With the onset of the Korean War, Cy resumed his service to his country by joining the Central Intelligence Agency and working in Frankfurt for eighteen months. Upon his return to Virginia, he transferred from the Army Reserve to the Marine Corps Reserve, with the rank of major.
Cy then spent some time with the American Security Bank and Trust Company in Washington, but his first and true vocation was his farm in Virginia. An active fox-hunter and race rider, he enjoyed many happy hours and much success afield. He retired the prestigious Rokeby Bowl on horses he trained and rode, and his fine horse. Uncle Pierre, won a number of races, notably the Virginia Gold Cup in 1955. Aside from his interest in thoroughbreds, Cy was an active, dedicated participant in many community affairs; this included helpful service on many local Boards as well as partnership in a local nursing home.
Death and burial ground of Manierre, Jr, Cyru “Cy” Edson.
Cyrus “Cy” Edson Manierre Jr. died on 22-04-1974, age 54, in The Plains, VA. He is buried at Emmanuel Cemetery in Middleburgh, CA. He was survived by his wife Nancy, born Redmond and two sons, Carter Harrison Manierre of Boston and Redmond F. Manierre of The Plains.