Lieutenant (Junior Grade) George Howard III, (D)L
United States Naval Reserve, Active, Deceased
Date of Birth:
Next of Kin:
Last Duty Station:
Circumstances of Death:
Lost at sea October 9, 1945 during a typhoon while enroute from Okinawa to Japan.
The following is an except from the web page of the Naval Historical Center in Washington, DC. For more information, you can visit their website at http://www.history.navy.mil
"On 4 October 1945, a typhoon was spotted developing in the Caroline Islands and tracked as it moved on a predictable course to the northwest. Although expected to pass into the East China Sea north of Formosa on 8 October, the storm unexpectedly veered north toward Okinawa. That evening the storm slowed down and, just as it approached Okinawa, began to greatly increase in intensity. The sudden shift of the storm caught many ships and small craft in the constricted waters of Buckner Bay (Nakagusuku Wan) and they were unable to escape to sea. On 9 October, when the storm passed over the island, winds of 80 knots (92 miles per hour) and 30-35 foot waves battered the ships and craft in the bay and tore into the Quonset huts and buildings ashore. A total of 12 ships and craft were sunk, 222 grounded, and 32 severely damaged. Personnel casualties were 36 killed, 47 missing, and 100 seriously injured. Almost all the food, medical supplies and other stores were destroyed, over 80% of all housing and buildings knocked down, and all the military installations on the island were temporarily out of action. Over 60 planes were damaged as well, though most were repairable. Although new supplies had been brought to the island by this time, and emergency mess halls and sleeping quarters built for all hands, the scale of the damage was still very large. If the war had not ended on 2 September, this damage, especially the grounding and damage to 107 amphibious craft (including the wrecking of four tank landing ships, two medium landing ships, a gunboat, and two infantry landing craft) would likely have seriously impacted the planned invasion of Japan (Operation Olympic)."
History of Service:
1942 Jan 23 Enlisted in U.S. Naval Reserve for four years.
1944 Feb 27 Enlistment terminated to accept appointment as Ensign, U.S. Naval Reserve.
1944 Feb 28 Accepted appointment and executed oath of office as Ensign, D-V(G), U.S. Naval Reserve to rank from 28 February 1944. Reported to Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps Unit, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina for temporary active duty.
1944 Feb 28 Detached from Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps Unit, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina and ordered to Sixth Naval District for temporary active duty afloat.
1944 Mar 07 Further reported to Inshore Patrol, Sixth Naval District for temporary active duty afloat. Further ordered to U.S. Section Base, Southport, North Carolina and ordered to Submarine Chaser Training Center, Miami, Florida for temporary active duty under instruction. Reported 22 March.
1944 May 20 Detached from Submarine Chaser Training Center, Miami, Florida and ordered to Fleet Operational Training Command, Pacific Fleet, Subordinate Command, Seattle, Washington and to Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Corporation for temporary duty in connection with fitting out the USS SABEATA at Everett Marine Ways Incorporated and for temporary duty on board when placed in service. Reported 26 May.
1945 Apr 11 Ordered detached from USS SABEATA and to Fourteenth Naval District, Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii for temporary duty pending further assignment. Reported 4 May. Further ordered to Navy Yard, Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii for temporary duty.
1945 May 04 Clarification changed to (D)L in accordance with BuPers Circular Letter 298-44.
1945 May 31 Ordered detached from Navy Yard, Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii and to USS PC 1128 for duty.
1945 Jul 01 Appointed Lieutenant (junior grade), (D)L for temporary service in the U.S. Naval Reserve to rank from 1 July 1945. Al Nav 149-45.
A plaque is mounted at the front entrance of the Naval Armory at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill in memory of LTJG George Howard III.
If you have additional information or material (anecdotes, photos, etc.) about this alumnus, please contact our secretary.