Anthony J. L. Morency

Private 1st Class

U.S. Army

Tank and Tractor Driver

East Base

Anthony Morency Portrait




Born Antoine Joseph Leo Morency, Anthony Morency sailed to Antarctica on the USMS North Star and proved to be helpful beyond his intended role as tank and tractor driver.  The North Star made a number of stops along the journey to Antarctica.  Upon anchoring at Pitcairn Island expedition members and the ships’ crew became acquainted with direct descendants of the HMS Bounty’s Fletcher Christian. Personnel provided medical assistance and basic food supplies to the islanders.  The next stop was Rapa Island, a thousand miles WSW of Pitcairn. 


The islanders were French-speaking and no one on the North Star spoke French---except Anthony Morency, who knew a few French words---very few, actually.  Because none of the island’s radios were in working order, the governor of this French colony was unaware that his country was at war.   Several months had passed since a ship had stopped at Rapa Island, resulting in a lack of news and mail. With Morency’s limited French vocabulary, he and the governor exchanged information by waving their arms, pointing, and performing all manner of gesticulations.


Later, in Antarctica, Morency tried skiing for the first time.  He fell several times but kept trying.  On what would be his final attempt, Morency gathered too much speed, took a hard fall, and was carried into Dr. Sims’ clinic.   His left fibula was fractured.  Dr. Sims, with the company of several onlookers, placed Morency’s left leg in a cast.   As all incidents of this nature had to be reported to the Executive Committee in Washington, base commander Richard Black filed his report. As a thoughtful son, Morency requested that his mother, Mrs. Virginia Morency, not be notified of his injury.


Anthony J. L. Morency was born in Manville, Rhode Island, on June 28, 1906.   Morency’s parents were Leon and Eugenie Morency, French-Canadian immigrants to the U.S.  Leon Morency was a store clerk who later became a stonemason. After their move to the US, Eugenie Morency changed her first name to Virginia.



Antarctic Service Medal Gold


Geographical Feature: Morency Island








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