b. 1842 Ireland. d. 29/08/1899 Whitefield, Maine.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 05/08/1864 Mobile Bay, Alabama.
Born in 1842 in Ireland, O'Connell immigrated to the United States and was living in New York when he joined the U.S. Navy. He served during the Civil War as a coal heaver on Admiral David Farragut's flagship, the USS Hartford. At the Battle of Mobile Bay on August 5, 1864, he manned the shell whip (a device used to lift ammunition up to the gun deck) despite being ill, until losing his right hand to a Confederate artillery shell. For this action, he was awarded the Medal of Honor four months later, on December 31, 1864.
On board the flagship USS Hartford, during successful attacks against Fort Morgan, rebel gunboats, and the ram Tennessee in Mobile Bay, 5 August 1864. Although a patient in the sick bay, O'Connell voluntarily reported at his station at the shell whip and continued to perform his duties with zeal and courage until his right hand was severed by an enemy shellburst.
BURIAL LOCATION: RESTHAVEN CEMETERY, WINDSOR, MAINE.
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