Adams, Thomas Mullen, LT

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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
132X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Naval Flight Officer
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
2002-2003, 132X, 849 Squadron RN
Service Years
1997 - 2003
Official/Unofficial US Navy Certificates
Order of the Golden Dragon

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Justin Shoger (Shogun), CDR to remember Adams, Thomas Mullen (Tom), LT.

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
La Mesa, California
Last Address
Persian Gulf

Casualty Date
Mar 22, 2003
Hostile, Died
Air Loss, Crash - Sea
Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
Location of Interment
Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery - San Diego, California
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Section A-E, Site 1282-A

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
GWOT Fallen
  2003, GWOT Fallen [Verified]

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar
Naval Aviator Wings

 Duty Stations
USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63)849 Squadron RN
  2002-2002, 132X, USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63)
  2002-2003, 132X, 849 Squadron RN
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  2003-2010 Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
 Colleges Attended 
United States Naval Academy
  1993-1997, United States Naval Academy
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Navy Lt. Adams was assigned as an exchange officer with the British Royal Navy's 849 Squadron in October 2002, based att RNAS Culdrose in Cornwal, Great Britainl.  During the 2003 invasion of Iraq, he was stationed with this unit aboard the HMS Ark Royal.

Adams was killed when two British Sea King Helicopters collided in air above the Persian Gulf. He was the first Navy officer to die in the war against Iraq.

From the time he was a boy, Thomas wanted to know all he could about ships and planes. He was born into a family of privilege but he grew up to be selfless and ready to serve his country. His grandfather served on the rebuilding boards of the Old Globe and the Aerospace Museum when both were destroyed by arson. He was also a descendant of U.S. presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams.

As a teenager, he joined the Civil Air Patrol and celebrated his 18th birthday by skydiving. Thomas graduated from Grossmont High School in 1993 where he was a National Merit Scholar and valedictorian. He graduated in 1997 from the Naval Academy with honors and was a radar operator whose job it was to detect low flying aircraft and skimming missiles as well as direct fighter aircraft.

Thomas was passionate about soccer and in 2002 he volunteered to go with the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk to Japan where he knew the World Cup finals would be played. He also had an amazing outlook on life with a great sense of humor.

While stationed in England, he decided he would buy a top of the line BMW. Most people would think a bit before deciding, but not Tom. He just went out and bought it and brought it home. That's when he found out the car wouldn't fit in the garage. He couldn't open the car doors to get out – it was that tight. Instead, he continued to park it in the garage and would climb in and out thru the trunk.

Thomas is buried on a hillside that looks toward Mount Helix where he grew up. The words on his headstone define Navy Lt. Thomas Mullen Adams – etched on the white stone is "He's Just Pining". It comes from his favorite Monty Python skit, "The Dead Parrot Sketch".

At his funeral he was honored with a rifle volley and a lone bugler played "Taps". Then two S-3 Vikings screamed overhead and Navy personnel folded an American flag and a British flag for his parents. (edited)
The men who died were all from 849 Squadron based at RNAS Culdrose near Helston, Cornwall, United Kingdom:

Lt Philip Green, 30, Caythorpe, Lincolnshire
Lt Anthony King, 35, Helston, Cornwall
Lt Marc Lawrence, 26, Westgate-on-Sea, Kent
Lt Philip West, 32, Budock Water, Cornwall
Lt James Williams, 28, Falmouth, Cornwall
Lt Andrew Wilson, 36, Exeter, Devon
Lt Thomas Mullen Adams, 27, US Navy


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