ALEXANDER, Nicholas KOLYA@PCOM.NET "...I was in the original VPM-1 Squadron which was then renamed VPW-1. Went out for the first season returned and then went back for the second season in the south Pacific. Was a Radioman - great times. It's nice to have these memories and contacts from those times..." [02MAY2000]
PHOM3 John G. Graf - In Memorium - CDR John G. Graf
Circa 1952 "...ANDERSON, CAPTAIN F. P...Regret to report death of my father, Capt. F.P. Anderson, USN (Ret.), CO VP/VPB-33, on 2 January 2005 at age 89. 27 AUG 1915 - 2 JAN 2005 - Fernald P. (Flip) Anderson, 89, a decorated Navy captain whose flying squadron amassed a distinguished World War II record, died January 2 of cardiac arrest at his home in Arlington. Deployed to the Southwest Pacific from September 1943 to February 1944, Capt. Anderson held several leadership positions in VPB-33, a squadron that flew PBY-5 Catalina seaplanes referred to as "Black Cats" for their black non-reflective paint and the ability to attack Japanese strongholds and ships at night deep behind enemy lines. During September 1944 while Capt. Anderson was the Commanding Officer, VPB-33 sank or destroyed 103,500 tons of valuable enemy shipping and damaged an additional 53,000 tons. This was the highest one-month total achieved by any WW II flying unit. For this feat, the squadron received the Presidential Unit Citation and Capt. Anderson was awarded the Legion of Merit with Combat "V". It was also during this period that Captain Anderson earned personally the Distinguished Flying Cross for attacking and sinking a Japanese tanker and its escort despite intense antiaircraft fire damaging his aircraft. A longtime Arlington resident, Fernald Philip Anderson was born in New Sweden, Maine. He was the first young man from this Swedish community in northern Maine to attend the U.S. Naval Academy graduating in 1939. For the next two years, Capt. Anderson served in the surface Navy as a gunnery officer. In September 1941, he was detached from the battleship, USS ARKANSAS, with orders to report to NAS Pensacola, Florida, for flight training. Designated a Naval Aviator on May 8, 1942, Capt. Anderson was assigned to VP-33 as it was forming in NAS Norfolk, Virginia. In August 1942, VP-33 was ordered to the Panama Canal Zone and participated in anti-submarine operations protecting the Panama Canal. For his conduct during this deployment, Capt. Anderson was awarded the Cross of Boyaca by the Government of Columbia. Now re-designated VPB-33, the squadron deployed to the Southwest Pacific via Hawaii and Australia in August 1943. The squadron participated in every campaign in this combat theater of operations until February 1945 following the liberation of the Philippines. In addition to the combat sorties deep into enemy territory, these operations included regular daytime patrols and rescue missions As reported in the 1992 book, Black Cats with Wings of Gold by A. J. Mueller, VPB-33 "became the most highly decorated squadron in the Pacific Area of Operations". The exploits of VPB-33 were the subject of a 1999 Birds of a Feather video production entitled "Black Cats" that has been aired on various cable television channels. Following his return to the United States in March 1945, Capt. Anderson served in several aviation training assignments, most notably as Executive Officer, NAS Brunswick, Maine. In February 1948 he reported for duty at Air (sic) Early Warning Squadron One (VPW-1), NAS North Island, San Diego, California, as the Executive Officer. VPW-1 was the Navy's first dedicated land-based airborne early warning (AEW) squadron flying the Navy's variant of the Army Air Forces radar-equipped EB-17G or PB-1W. After a tour of shore duty at the Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, D.C., as Program Officer and Atomic Energy Commission Liaison, Capt. Anderson returned to flying in June 1952 when he became the first Commanding Officer of the new AEW Squadron One (VW-1). During Capt. Anderson's tour, VW-1 participated in combat operations in Korea and transitioned from the PB-1W to the Lockheed Constellation (WV-2) in December 1952. Capt. Anderson returned to Washington, D. C., in July 1954 and was assigned to the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations. From August 1956 to July 1957, he was a student at the National War College, Fort Leslie J. McNair. After tours in Norfolk, Virginia, on the staff of the Commander, Naval Air Force, Atlantic Fleet, and Commander-in-Chief, NATO's Atlantic Command, Capt. Anderson returned to Washington when he was appointed the Director of the Navy's Astronautics Operations Division serving as the Navy's liaison with NASA's Project Mercury and the original 7 astronauts.. This office was instrumental in the early days of the U.S. space program. From 1962 to 1965, Capt. Anderson served on the staff of the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff. On July 1, 1965, he retired from the Navy after 26 years commissioned service. Effective September 1, 1970, after working as a research and systems analyst with a defense contractor, Capt. Anderson was recalled to active duty as Director, Navy Council of Personnel Boards. In this position, he served also as the President, Navy Discharge Review Board and Navy Clemency and Parole Board. His duties were expanded in 1975 to include Director, Office of Naval Disability Evaluation. Retiring for the second time in 1976, Capt. Anderson was awarded his second Legion of Merit for his performance of duty during this period. In retirement, finally, Capt. Anderson remained in Arlington, Virginia, where he was active in community and business affairs for many years. He was a deacon in the Memorial Baptist Church and was church clerk for 36 years. Capt. Anderson also was a member of the church choir and served as the interim choir director for a period during the 1970's. An active member of the Arlington Host Lions Club, he was also the secretary of U.S. Naval Academy Class of 1939 and served as class president from 1980 to 1986. Beginning in 1976, Capt. Anderson was a tax consultant affiliated with the Executive Tax Service of H&R Block. In 1981, he was appointed the Director of H&R Block's Premium Tax Service for Arlington, a post he held until 2002. Capt. Anderson was very proud of his Swedish heritage. In 1959, he was awarded the Royal Order of the Sword (Knight Commander) by the King of Sweden in appreciation of services rendered as escort officer for Admiral Stig Ericsson, Commander-in-Chief, Royal Swedish Navy, during a visit to the United States in 1958. In addition, Capt. Anderson was deeply touched and honored when the citizen's committee from New Sweden, Maine, asked him to be the Grand Marshall in the community's centennial parade in 1970 as his grandfather was one of the founders of the town. Survivors include his wife of 62 years, Carolyn R. Anderson, of Arlington; two sons, Philip R. Anderson M.D., of South Berwick, Maine, and Colonel William T. Anderson USMC (Ret.), of Casteau, Belgium; a sister, Enid Olivenbaum, of Clermont, Florida; and five grandchildren...Earlier, Dad and Mom were interviewed for video, Birds of a Feather, by Wings Production Group, a couple of years ago. Dad and spouse were interviewed for video, Birds of a Feather, by Wings Production Group, a couple of years ago. Colonel Bill Anderson, Retired firstname.lastname@example.org..." [PIX Added 19SEP2007 | Memorial Listing 17FEB2005 | 11MAY2003]
"...GRAF, CDR John G..."
November 15th, 1969
"Shot Down And Captured"
"The Incredible Naval Career of Jack Graf"
Contributed by Ray Parsons email@example.com
Researched by Ted Shireman firstname.lastname@example.org
Boot camp and Naval School of Photography
Weather Reconnaisance Squadron One (VPW-1) at Camp Kearny (Miramar), CA and Agana, Guam. Advanced to Photo Mate Third Class
In San Diego as PHOM1. Enrolled in the LDO program
In Hutchinson, KS as PHC. Had just been selected as LDO
Relieved Larsen as Chief Photo Mate of Deep Freeze II. Commissioned Ensign (LDO) at Little America in 1958
1962 or 1963
Completed Bombardier/Navigator training and was flying as a B/N on a A3D squadron at Sanford, FL as a LTjg
In Sanford, FL as a LT. Assigned to an electronic recon outfit at Rota, Spain
In Vietnam with an intelligence operation. Pilot killed by ground fire. Jack brought the plane back to base. Received an award, possibly the DFC
Naval Photo Interpretation School. Suitland, MD as LT. On deer hunt with friends, 1965
Designated a Naval Flight Officer. In Vietnam for a second tour
Shot down and captured. Defended himself with his sidearm as long as possible
Escaped from POW Camp! Believed drowned while trying to cross a river. The official word, tends to explain his continued MIA status
Unknown Date Unverified Rumor (?) Seen "in country" as a full CDR. Disappeared from street in Saigon
Name seen on Vietnam Memorial
Wife, Anne, believed living in Kaneone, HI. Also reported living in Virginia and near Chicago
"The San Diego Union-Tribune - Saturday, May 1, 1993"
By A. J. Plunkett, Newport News Daily Press"
On Nov. 15, 1969, about 20 miles south of Vung Tau, White's Army OV-1 Mohawk surveillance plane was hit by ground fire
He and a Navy observer, Lt. Cmdr John Graf, ejected, Sailors aboard a Navy ship reported seeing the parachutes
That was the last official knowledge of White and Graf for 3 1/2 years. Neither man's name showed up on official lists of prisoners provided to U. S. officials, according to news reports at the time. White's wife was told only that he was missing. Pentagon records still list Graf as missing
All I can say is he was alive when he hit the ground. White said. The pair was captured almost immediately
White said he suffered a compression fracture in his back when he ejected. And just before we were captured, I took hand-grenade shrapnel to the back of the head, White said
His wounds were never treated, White said, and he doesn't know if Graf was inured. Graf was taken away a few weeks later, and that was the last White saw of him, he said.
HALL, Albert Thomas Jr. email@example.com "...Plank Owner VPW-1 March 1946. Transpac Kearney Kaneohe, April 28th, arrived Guam May 5th Typhoon Charlotte May 14, 1946. Transferred to VPW-2 June 16 1946. Typhoon contact June 21. Worked Caveti Samar and Okinawa. Looking to hear from any PB4Y2 era Pilots and Crew from VPW-1 or VPW-2 Group. I was transferred out of W-2 in April of 1947..." [09AUG99]
MARTIN, George Tworoadrunners@aol.com "...I was ARM in PB4Y2 Crew 165 at NAAS Muni #1, Jax. After training, we became Crew 5; VPB-101 and xferred to NAS North Island, San Diego, California, then to NAAS Crow's Landing. In April, 1945 we went to NAAS Camp Kearney with VPB-197. In October, 1945 VPW-1 was commissioned and I joined Crew 1 as ARM, PPC- Commander Dennis Szabo...I went to ARM school at Mainside Jacksonville; gunnery at Yellowwater, FL. and then on USS Mission Bay (CVE59) until assigned to Crew 165 for training. PC was Lt. E. R. Telling, co-pilots were Ensigns T.C. Moe and Richard N. Amluxen. Plane Capt. was AMM1/c Ralph Maggio. Rounding out the crew were AMM3/c Royal C. Main, Jr., ARM3/c Richard H. Pearson, ARM3/c Pierce E. Dissinger, AOM3/c Walter J. (Joe) Forney, S1/c(AMM) Walter J. (Jay) Dunaway, AOM3/c Stanley P. (Danny) Napora, ARM3/c Thomas E. McCoy and self. After training we went to NAS North Island, San Diego, California, for a very short time and then joined VPB-101 and later VPB-197 at Crow's Landing NAAS, CA.. After training completed there 197 was transferred to NAAS Camp Kearney, San Diego, where it was dissolved in August, 1945. I was then assigned to Lt. Cdr. Dennis M. Szabo who was about to form the Navy's first all-weather squadron and from then until I was separated in May, 1946, I flew in Crew 1 with promoted Cmdr. Szabo. I remember how pleased I was when he got the "scrambled eggs" on his cap, especially so because I was promoted at the same time" [E-Mail Updated 05OCT99 | BIO Updated 04AUG98 | 31JUL98]
MILLER, Frank ...02AUG47... firstname.lastname@example.org"...I was in VPW-1 and VPM-1 1946 and 1947. Flew Typhoons in the South Pacific at of Agana, Guam NAS. I flew with ray Parsons and Ted Shireman who are also listed here. I believe we were the first Navy all weather squadron..."
MORSE, Robert R. (Snuffy) email@example.com "...I was in the original VPW-1 during WWII from 1944 to 1946. Is anybody out there (I mean, still alive)? I was stationed in Miami, FL, NAS Jacksonville, Florida, NAS Hutchinson, Kansas and NAS North Island, San Diego, California..." [14APR2005]
O'NEIL, Bill [AB4FK- HAM RADIO Call] firstname.lastname@example.org "...Retired ATC-ex RM, ARM, ALC, etc. Served with VP-73, VP-84, VPB-102, VJ-2, VX-2, VW-4, VPW-1, VPW-2, VW-11, VS-36, NADU, FAETULANT, VP-34, etc..." WebSite: Flying Boat Amateur Radio Society http://www.qsl.net/ab4fk/fbars/[Updated 24JAN98]
PARSONS, Ray Circa 02AUG47 email@example.com "...I'm searching for members of VPW-1, VPW-2, VPM-1 & VM-1 during the period of 1945 to 1948, when the squadrons were disestablished. A dozen members have been located thus far..." [E-Mail Updated 22SEP2007 | E-Mail Updated 27NOV2001 | 00XXX97]
PIOTRASCH, ARM3 James firstname.lastname@example.org "...I served with VPW-1 (11/1945-03/1946). My Pilot was LT Raymond S. Long..." [14DEC2011]
SHIREMAN, ATC (X-PHC) Ted Retired Circa 02AUG1947 email@example.com "...Was a photo-mate first in VPW-2 at NS Sangley Point, Philippines and then VPM-1 at NAS Agana, Guam (1946 through 1947). Would like to hear from all sqdn members. Later (1959-1962) was in the Barrier Squadron out of NAS Barbers Point, Hawaii as an ATC (don't ask) flying Radar equipped Connies. Retired in 1962..."
SZABO, CDR Dennis M. Retired Submitted by Nick Selk (CDR Szabo is Nick's Uncle) firstname.lastname@example.org "...Served with VPW-1...Cdr Szabo received a DFC for (I think) service in the Philippines...He was an AVCAD with VP-13 in the late 30's (around '39)...He was an Ensign with VP-26 in '40 w/ LCDR (then) A. N. Perkins as CO and LT A. D. Gray as Flight Officer...J.J. Hyland, also a recipient of the DFC, was with VP-26 at the same time..." [05APR98]
WITT, Hubert "Bud" c/o Ed Witt email@example.com "...My Dad, Hubert "Bud" Witt, served with VPW-1. He and his crew recieved a commendation for their performance of duty June 20, 1946 for reonnaissance of a recent typhoon. My dad is a life and well. He is extremely proud of his contributions. Dad would love to hear from any former Shipmates..." [25APR2009]
"VPW-1 Summary Page"