Stole, Gerald James, F1c

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Fireman First Class
Last Primary NEC
F1c-0000-Fireman 1st Class
Last Rating/NEC Group
Fireman First Class
Primary Unit
1944-1945, F1c-0000, USS Aaron Ward (DM-34)
Service Years
1942 - 1945
Fireman First Class

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Sheila Rae Myers, HM3 to remember Stole, Gerald James, F1c.

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.
Casualty Info
Home Town
Crookston, MN
Last Address
5301 Lockley Ave
Oakland, CA

Casualty Date
May 05, 1945
Hostile, Died of Wounds
World War II
Location of Interment
Lincoln Memorial Park Cemetery - Portland, Oregon
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Veterans' Lawn

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Associations and Other Affiliations
World War II FallenWWII Memorial National RegistryUnited States Navy Memorial The National Gold Star Family Registry
  1945, World War II Fallen
  2020, WWII Memorial National Registry
  2020, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2020, The National Gold Star Family Registry

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
US Navy
  1943-1944, F1c-0000, USS California (BB-44)
  1944-1945, F1c-0000, USS Aaron Ward (DM-34)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1945-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Okinawa Gunto Operation
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Jan 01, 1944, Promoted to F1c
  May 11, 1944, Deck Court
  Mar 26, 1949, Services Set For War Hero
  Apr 01, 2020, General Photos1
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

On 3 May 1945, USS Aaron Ward (DM-34) came under heavy attack from Japanese kamikazes. Most of the details are related in the citation for the Presidential Unit Citation her crew earned for this action. Through the night, her crew fought to save the ship. At 2106, USS Shannon arrived and took Aaron Ward in tow. Early on the morning of 4 May, she arrived at Kerama Retto where she began temporary repairs.

F1c Stole escaped from the damaged portion of the ship, but in returning to the engine room to attempt the rescue of an officer suffered burns that caused his death two days later aboard a hospital ship.
Service number: 6557132

Silver Star
Awarded for Actions During World War II
Service: Navy
Division: U.S.S. Aaron Ward (DM-34)
GENERAL ORDERS: Bureau of Naval Personnel Information Bulletin No. 354 (September 1946)
Citation: Synopsis: Fireman First Class Gerald James Stole, United States Navy, was awarded the Silver Star (Posthumously) for gallantry in action while serving aboard the U.S.S. AARON WARD (DM-34) off
Okinawa on 3 May 1945. His gallant actions and dedicated devotion to duty, without regard for his own life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Naval Service.

Presidential Unit Citation
For extraordinary heroism in action as a Picket Ship on Radar Picket Station during a coordinated attack by approximately twenty-five Japanese aircraft near Okinawa on May 3, 1945. Shooting down two Kamikazes which approached in determined suicide dives, the U.S.S. AARON WARD was struck by a bomb from a third suicide plane as she fought to destroy this attacker before it crashed into her superstructure and sprayed the entire area with flaming gasoline. Instantly flooded in her after engineroom and fir room, she battled against flames and exploding ammunition on deck and, maneuvering in a tight circle because of damage to her steering gear, countered another coordinated suicide attack and destroyed three Kamikazes in rapid succession. Still smoking heavily and maneuvering radically, she lost all power when her forward fireroom flooded under a seventh suicide plane which dropped a bomb close aboard and dived in flames into the main deck. Unable to recover from this blow before an eighth bomber crashed into her superstructure bulkhead only a few seconds later, she attempted to shoot down a ninth Kamikaze diving toward her at high speed and, despite the destruction of nearly all her gun mounts aft when this plane struck her, took under fire the tenth bomb-laden plane, which penetrated the dense smoke to crash on board with a devastating explosion. With fires raging uncontrolled, ammunition exploding and all engine spaces except the forward engineroom flooded as she settled in the water and listed to port, she began a nightlong battle to remain afloat and, with the assistance of a towing vessel, finally reached port the following morning. By her superb fighting spirit and the courage and determination of her entire company, the AARON WARD upheld the finest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

The information contained within this profile was compiled from various internet sources.
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