Mystic - Col. Daniel J. Sweeney (Ret.), 81, of Mystic, died on Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013.
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Born in Fall River, Mass., April 22, 1931, Mr. Sweeney earned a bachelor's degree from Providence College in 1953, and attended Georgetown Law School. He married Eleanor Lynch in 1956. A patriot to his core, Mr. Sweeney served his country in both a military and civilian capacity. In 1955, he was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Army Counterintelligence Corps. He went on to serve the U.S. Army Reserves for nearly four decades, during which he graduated from the U.S. Army War College, and retired as colonel.
As a civilian, Mr. Sweeney joined the Office of Naval Intelligence (subsequently known as Naval Investigative Service (NIS)) in 1957. He served as special agent in charge at posts in Newport, R.I., Naples, Italy, New London, and in 1974 he was transferred to Honolulu as deputy regional director of NIS Operations throughout the Pacific. In 1980, Mr. Sweeney was promoted to assistant director at NIS headquarters in Washington, D.C., and he subsequently served as inspector general for NIS operations worldwide. In his last tour of duty, Mr. Sweeney was assigned as regional director at NIS Subic Bay, Philippines, and received many accolades for his leadership at a time of great unrest in the country. Following his retirement from NIS in 1986, Mr. Sweeney served as assistant inspector general of the State of Connecticut.
Mr. Sweeney was devoted to his family, and despite a demanding career, always made time to attend sporting events and family activities. He will be remembered for his terrific wit and great storytelling abilities. Never idle, he nurtured many passions and hobbies, from golf and tennisâ€¦to reading and writingâ€¦to cheering the UCONN ladies basketball team and his beloved Red Sox. Above all, he was an avid sailor; most at home on the waters of Narragansett Bay.
Mr. Sweeney is survived by his wife of 56 years, Eleanor (Lynch) Sweeney and their three daughters, Shannon (Sweeney) Saunders and her husband, Dave, of Hope, R.I., Maureen Walsh and her husband, Jim, of East Greenwich, R.I., and Kerry (Sweeney) Harris and her husband, Jim, of Franklin, Mass. He is also survived by his four grandchildren, Christopher Bradshaw, Megan Bradshaw, Hannah Harris and Callan Harris.
He was predeceased by his parents, John and Julia Sweeney; siblings, John Sweeney, Mary Sweeney and Peg Resnick; and his two sons, Daniel J. Sweeney Jr. and John T. Sweeney.
Visiting hours will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1, at the Mystic Funeral Home, Route 1, Mystic. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, at St. Patrick Roman Catholic Church, 32 East Main St., Mystic. Burial will be private at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va.
Please visit www.mysticfuneralhome.com to leave an online message of condolence and for directions to the funeral home.
Published in The Day on Jan. 31, 2013