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The United States Navy Memorial

Navy Memorial Honoring the Men & Women of the Sea Services



Ship Designation: 
Date Lost: 
Thursday, June 4, 1942
The Battle of Midway
Hornet dive bombers missed contact, but 15 planes comprising her Torpedo Squadron 8 found the enemy and pressed home their attacks. They were met by overwhelming fighter opposition about eight miles from three enemy carriers and followed all the way in to be shot down one by one. Ens. George H. Gay, USNR, the only surviving pilot, reached the surface as his plane sunk. He hid under a rubber seat cushion to avoid strafing and witness the greatest carrier battle in history. Of 41 torpedo planes launched by the American carriers, only six returned. Their sacrifices drew enemy fighters away from dive bombers of Enterprise and Yorktown who sank three Japanese carriers with an assist from submarine USS Nautilus. The fourth Japanese carrier, Hiryu, was sunk the following day.

Lost At Sea Log

Number of sailors in this log: 50

Name Service Branchsort descending
ENS Harold Ellison USN
Sea 1c Howard Pitt USN
Ens Joseph Hissem USN
EM 3c John Mehltretter USN
Lt(jg) Jeff Woodson USN
Sea 2c Francis Polston USN
Ens George Hill USN
Ens Wm. Abercrombie USN
RM 2c Arthur Osborn USN
Ens Don Griswold USN
ARM 2c Ross Bibb USN
Lt James Owens USN
Ens Stephen Groves USN
ARM 1c Kenneth Bunch USN
Ens Victor Lewis USN
Lt(jg) John Gray USN
ARM 3c Max Calkins USN
ARM 2c Amelio Maffei USN
Ens Oswald Gaynier USN
AM 3c Nelson Carr USN


Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships