RDML William “Bill” E. Newman

2018-7-10 Newman

Rear Admiral Bill Newman, a 1961 Naval Academy graduate, retired from active duty in 1996, culminating 35 years of commissioned service.

Primarily an aircraft carrier-based naval aviator, he served as attack pilot, experimental test pilot, and flight demonstration pilot as leader of the Navy’s Blue Angels. Bill logged 950 carrier landings and 5200 pilot hours in 53 types of U.S. and British military aircraft. During 1965 combat operations in Vietnam, Bill’s A-4 “Skyhawk” was hit by enemy ground fire on several missions. He was shot down and rescued on a Friday-the-13th–a not-too-unlucky day.

During 1978/79, as Commanding Officer/Flight Leader of the Navy’s Blue Angels, Bill led the team in 200+ air shows throughout the USA and Canada flying the A-4 “Skyhawk II”.
Along the way, Bill had the following sea commands: Attack Squadron-195 flying the A-7 “Corsair II”, the 90 aircraft comprising Carrier Air Wing NINE onboard the aircraft carrier Constellation, and the USS White Plains, a 17,000-ton combat stores ship operating in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

During the last ten years of his career, Bill served in the Naval Air Systems Command as a Materiel Professional. His responsibilities included major acquisition program management, engineering oversight of naval aviation development programs, and flag command of the Naval Air Warfare Centers’ research and test activities performed on 53,000 square miles of test ranges in southern California.

We honor you, William Newman.

(#Repost @Angels and British Photo from: Aloft Magazine)

Lt Neil Armstrong

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The first human to walk on the surface of the moon was studying aeronautical engineering at Purdue University on a U.S. Navy scholarship when in 1949 he began flight training to become a naval aviator. On September 3, 1951—five days after flying his first mission in the Korean War—the 21-year-old Armstrong ejected from his F9F Panther jet after it was struck by anti-aircraft fire on a low bombing run. In nearly one full year of service in Korea, the U.S. Navy pilot flew 78 combat missions and earned three air medals.

We honor you, Neil Armstrong.

(#Repost @ https://www.history.com/news/10-famous-korean-war-veterans)

RM2 Julius Heinrich Otto “Henry” Pieper

2018-6-26 Pieper

Julius (pictured left), born of German immigrant parents, worked together with his twin, Louie, for Burlington Railroad and enlisted together with him in the Navy. Both were radio operators and both were on the same unwieldy flat-bottom boat, Landing Ship Tank Number 523 (LST-523), making the Channel crossing from Falmouth, England, to Utah Beach 13 days after the June 6 D-Day landings.

The LST-523 mission was to deliver supplies at the Normandy beachhead and remove the wounded. It never got there.

The vessel struck an underwater mine and sank off the coast. Of the 145 Navy crew members, 117 were found perished. Survivors’ accounts speak of a major storm on the Channel with pitched waves that tossed the boat mercilessly before the explosion that shattered the vessel.

While his brother Louie’s body was soon found, identified and laid to rest, Julius’ remains were only recovered in 1961 by French salvage divers who found them in the vessel’s radio room. He was interred as an “Unknown” at the Ardennes American Cemetery in Neuville, Belgium, also devoted to the fallen of World War II, in the region that saw the bloody Battle of the Bulge.

Julius’ remains might have stayed among those of 13 other troops from the doomed LST-523 still resting unidentified at the Ardennes cemetery. But in 2017, a U.S. agency that tracks missing combatants using witness accounts and DNA testing identified him.

The Pieper family asked that Louie’s grave in Normandy be relocated to make room for his twin brother at his side.

“They are finally together again, side by side, where they should be,” said their niece, Susan Lawrence, 56, of California.

We honor you, Julius Pieper.

(Submission by: Miah Parry. #Repost @MSN news)

RM2 Ludwig Julius Wilhelm “Louie” Pieper

2018-6-26 Pieper

Louie (pictured left), born of German immigrant parents, worked for Burlington Railroad with his twin brother and enlisted together with him in the Navy. Both were radio operators and both were on the same unwieldy flat-bottom boat, Landing Ship Tank Number 523 (LST-523), making the Channel crossing from Falmouth, England, to Utah Beach 13 days after the June 6 D-Day landings.

The LST-523 mission was to deliver supplies at the Normandy beachhead and remove the wounded. It never got there.

The vessel struck an underwater mine and sank off the coast. Of the 145 Navy crew members, 117 were found perished. Survivors’ accounts speak of a major storm on the Channel with pitched waves that tossed the boat mercilessly before the explosion that shattered the vessel.

Louie’s body was laid to rest in what now is the Normandy American Cemetery.

We honor you, Louie Pieper.

(Submission by: Miah Parry. #Repost @MSN news)

PH1c Paul J Madden

2018-6-13 Madden

Paul J Madden was born in Boston, Massachusetts, in September 1920. He graduated from mechanical Arts High School in Boston, where he first became interested in photography.

Madden enlisted in the US Navy in July 1940. After working for a time as a mechanic, he volunteered to be a photographer’s mate, providing documentation and aerial reconnaissance, predominately aboard the USS Essex in the Pacific Theater. He rose to the rank of Photographer’s Mate, First Class and received numerous naval decorations, including the Purple Heart, prior to his honorable discharge on July 6, 1946.

After the war, Madden entered the plumbing trade and eventually became the business manager of the Plumber’s Union Local 12, Boston, a position he held for many years. He was proud of the time he spent as a Navy photographer and has been generous with his collection. Through the years he has contributed numerous photos to naval reunion groups as a way to honor his fellow veterans.

He died on February 20, 2004. Paul Madden will not only be remembered for his photographs, but for his giving spirit and extraordinary sense of adventure.

We honor you, Paul Madden.

(Submission from Seattle’s Museum of Flight)

HA1c Fred Faulkner Lester

2018-6-12 Lester

Fred Faulkner Lester was born in Downers Grove, Illinois on April 29, 1926. He joined the United States Naval Reserve on November 1, 1943 when he was just 17 years old. He was placed on active service with the United States Navy, trained as a medical corpsman, and assigned to the 1st Battalion, 22nd Marine Regiment, 6th Marine Division.

Seventy years ago today during the Battle of Okinawa, then 19-year-old Lester, now a Hospitalman Apprentice 1st Class, rescued one wounded Marine from under heavy enemy fire, ignored his own grievous wounds, and instructed his comrades in care for the injured until he perished.

As is usual for members of the Naval Service awarded the Medal of Honor, a warship carried the young hero’s name. The USS Lester (DE-1022), a Dealey-class destroyer escort, served with our Navy from June 14, 1957 through December 14, 1973. The vessel was scrapped in 1974.

Lester today rests in peace in the Clarendon Hills Cemetery, Darien, Illinois.

We honor you, Fred Lester.

(#Repost @Their Finest Hour)

Donald Patrick Finn

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War: World War II, 1939-1945
Branch: Navy
Unit: VP-22 (Patrol Squadron), Pacific Fleet
Service Location: Pacific Theater; Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii
Rank: Aviation Chief Machinist’s Mate

By the end of World War II, Donald Patrick Finn, who served in the Navy in the Pacific Theater, could say he nearly saw it all. He was stationed in Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. He would serve as an aviation machinist and a gunner in Australia, Bali, the Dutch East Indies, and in the Aleutian Islands. He kept a diary and wrote letters to his sister in which he recorded detailed descriptions of his travels as well as pointed comments about military life, his comrades, and servicemen from other countries.

We honor you, Donald Finn.

(#Repost @https://www.loc.gov/vets/stories/wwiilist.html)