Arthur Hamilton Sweeney, Jr. – Major General, United States Army

Major General Arthur H. Sweeney, the 11th Commander of White Sands Proving Ground/Missile Range, was born in Charleston, West Virginia, November 9, 1920, and graduated from Parkersburg High School, Parkersburg, West Virginia, in 1938. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Ordnance Corps upon graduation on April 27, 1942.

Following assignments at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey, in the Southwest Pacific area at various locations in New Guinea and the Philippines, and Washington, D.C., General Sweeney, then a captain, reverted to inactive status.
While attending the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration in 1947, General Sweeney was commissioned a first lieutenant in the Regular Army with temporary rank of Captain.

Following his graduation with a Master’s in Business Administration, he served in several interim assignments, including training in industry with the DuPont Corporation and as an instructor at The Ordnance School.

Between 1950 and 1952 he served in the Management Office, Office of the Chief of Ordnance. In October 1953 he was named Assistant Military Attaché in Berne, Switzerland, remaining there until his as assignment in July 1956 to the U.S. Army Ballistics Missile Agency, Huntsville, Alabama. In his capacity as Assistant Director, Industrial Operation Division, General Sweeney (then major) worked in planning the production of Redstone and Jupiter ballistic missile systems.

In July 1958, following his promotion to Lieutenant Colonel, he assumed command of the 701st Ordnance Battalion, 1st Infantry Division, and remained in that capacity until his assignment in January 1961 as chief of the Ordnance Section, Military Advisory and Assistance Group, Cambodia.

Upon returning to the U.S. from Cambodia in April 1963, he was designated a military member of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency where his work included planning the first US inspection of international bases in the Antarctic and research in inspection methods applicable to International Arms Control Agreement.

In September 1965, following his graduation from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and promotion to colonel, he assumed command of Springfield Armory, Springfield, Massachusetts, and remained there until his assignment on November 1, 1967, as commander, Watervliet Arsenal, New York.

In September 1968, following his nomination for promotion to brigadier general, he was assigned as the deputy commander of the US Army Weapons Command, Rock Island, Illinois. Following nomination for promotion to major general in May 1970, he assumed command of the US Army Support Command in Qui Nhon, Vietnam. In November 1970 General Sweeney was reassigned as the commanding general of the US Army Support Command, Da Nang, where he remained until phase out of that command in April 1972. He returned to the Continental United States in May 1972 and assumed duties as commanding general of the White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.

General Sweeney is also a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College, The Ordnance School, the Strategic Intelligence School and the Army Language School. General Sweeney has been the recipient of the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Air Medal, the Joint Services Commendation Medal and the Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters. His foreign awards include the National Order of Vietnam, the Army Distinguished Service Order (Vietnam) and the Order of Military Merit (Korea).

He was married to the former Veronica Donovan of Sidney, Australia.


  • DATE OF BIRTH: 11/09/1920
  • DATE OF DEATH: 05/17/1999


  • DATE OF BIRTH: 04/06/1909
  • DATE OF DEATH: 04/14/2001


Major General Arthur Hamilton Sweeney Jr.
Born November 9, 1920 in Charleston, West Virginia
Died 1999

Second Lieutenant (Reserve) 1942
Brigadier General August 1, 1969
Major General June 1, 1971

Served in WWII & Vietnam
Commanding Officer, Springfield Armory 1965-67
Commanding Officer, Watervlet Arsenal 1967-68
Deputy Commanding General, US.Army Weapons Command, Rock Island 1968-70
Commanding General, Danang Support Command, Vietnam 1970-72
Commanding General, White Sands Missile Range 1972-74
Commanding General, Army Materiel Management Agency, Europe 1974-76
Deputy Chief of Staff (Logistics), Army Forces Command 1976-78
DSM – Legion of Merit



Veronica Donovan Sweeney passed away at her Richmond, Virginia, home on April 14, 2001. She was predeceased by her beloved husband of 47 years, Major General Arthur Hamilton Sweeney, Jr., retired Army officer (of Parkersubrg, West Virginia), a highly decorated veteran of World War II and Vietnam.

Veronica, born in Sudney, Australia, the daughter of the late James O’Donovan and Catherine Carmody O’Donovan of Limerick, Irelick, was a member of St. Edward the Confessor Catholic Church in  Richmond. She was preceded in death by her brother, James Donovan and sisters, Kathleen Donovan, May Brophy and Doris Anthony of Sydney, Australia.

Mrs. Sweeney had an illustrious career with the United States Army during World War II in the Pacific with the Commanding General, Army Base Headquarters in Sydney and later in Japan with the Commanding General of 8th US Army of Occupation under General Douglas MacArthur. She also served with UNRRA in Shanghai, China and Manila, The Phillipines.

On her arrival in the United States in 1948, Mrs. Sweeney settled in Washington, D.C. and served on the staff of the Indian Embassy; the Pakistan Embassy; and the British Embassy. Following this, she was employed at the White House as an administrative officer of the military aides to the President. This employment continued until her marriage to Major General (then Major) Arthur H. Sweeney in 1952. During her years as a military wife, Mrs. Sweeney accompanied her husband throughout his career assignments as attache to the American Embassy in Switzerland and to further overseas assignments in Cambodia, Germany abnd Vietnam, as well as assignments in the United States until his retirement at Fort McPherson, Georgia in 1978.

Following military retirement, they relocated to Richmond, Virginia, where General Sweeney was appointed as personal assistant to Louis Reynolds, and later as Vice President of Reynolds Metals International.

The Mass of the Resurrection will be celebrated for Mrs. Sweeney at St. Edward’s Chuch on Dolfield Road at 11 a.m. on April 23, 2001. Her remains will be available for visitation at 10 a.m. Interment will follow at Arlington National Cemetery at 11 a.m. on April 24, 2001. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Paralyzed Veterans of America, Virginia Mid-Atlantic Chapter, 11620 Busy St., Richmond, Virginia 23236, for application to Mrs. Sweeney’s ongoing project at the McGuire Veterans Hospital.

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