Copeland, Robert Witcher, RADM

 Service Photo   Service Details
44 kb
View Time Line
Last Rank
Rear Admiral Upper Half
Last Primary NEC
111X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Surface Warfare
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1947-1965, 111X, Naval Reserve Forces Command
Service Years
1935 - 1965
Rear Admiral Upper Half
Rear Admiral Upper Half

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Robert Cox, YNCS to remember Copeland, Robert Witcher, RADM USN(Ret).

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Contact Info
Home Town
Not Specified
Last Address
Tacoma, Washington

Date of Passing
Aug 25, 1973
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

I created this profile of Rear Admiral Copeland as part of my research of the Battle Off Samar.  Copeland was the Commanding Officer of USS Samuel B. Roberts (DE-413).

See for more info.

Please visit my Battle Off Samar profiles:

  • VADM Clifton Sprague
  • VADM Thomas Sprague
  • ADM Felix Stump
  • VADM Ralph Ofstie
  • RADM William Sample
  • RADM Leon Kintberger
  • CDR Ernest Evans

    This profile is about 75% complete.
    Other Comments:
  • Born in Tacoma, Washington, on September 9, 1910.

  • Enlisted in the Naval Reserve in 1929, he was commissioned as a Naval Reserve officer in 1935.

  • Copeland practiced law from 1935 until 1940, when he was ordered to active duty during the Navy's pre-World War II expansion.

  • During the War, he commanded USS Pawtucket (YT-7), USS Black Douglas (PYc-45), USS Wyman (DE-38) and USS Samuel B. Roberts (DE-413).

  • During the Battle off Samar, October 25, 1944, while commanding Samuel B. Roberts, Lieutenant Commander Copeland led his ship and crew in an attack on a greatly superior Japanese battleship and cruiser force. Though his ship was lost, this action helped defeat the Japanese counter-offensive against the Leyte invasion. For this, he was awarded the Navy Cross.

  • Following World War II, Copeland resumed his law career while remaining a member of the Naval Reserve, in which he rose to the rank of Rear Admiral.

  • Robert W. Copeland died at Tacoma, Washington, on August 25, 1973.

  • USS Copeland (FFG-25) was named in honor of Rear Admiral Robert W. Copeland.

     Photo Album   (More...

     Ribbon Bar

     Duty Stations
    Naval Reserve Forces CommandUS NavyNaval War College (Staff)
      1935-1940, 250X, Naval Reserve Forces Command
      1940-1940, 110X, USS Pawtucket (YT-7)
      1941-1942, 000X, USS Black Douglas (PYc-45)
      1943-1943, 111X, USS Wyman (DE-38)
      1944-1944, 111X, USS Samuel B. Roberts (DE-413)
      1945-1945, 111X, Naval War College (Staff)
      1945-1946, 250X, 5th Naval District
      1947-1965, 111X, Naval Reserve Forces Command
     Combat and Non-Combat Operations
      1944-1944 Leyte Campaign (1944)/Battle of Samar2
     Colleges Attended 
    University of Washington
      1929-1935, University of Washington
    Copyright Inc 2003-2011