Nelson, Robert Kolden, ENS

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
131X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Pilot
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1943-1944, 131X, VF-20 Fighting 20
Service Years
1942 - 1944

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Michael D. Withers (Mike), OSCS to remember Nelson, Robert Kolden, ENS.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Everett, WA
Last Address
Bellingham, WA

Casualty Date
Nov 19, 1944
Hostile-Body Not Recovered
Air Loss, Crash - Sea
World War II
Location of Interment
Manila American Cemetery and Memorial - Manila, Philippines
Wall/Plot Coordinates

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

ENS Nelson was a member of VF-20 aboard the USS Enterprise. His plane was shot down on November 19, 1944. His body was not recovered and he was later declared dead.

Service number: 305688

Navy Cross

Awarded for actions during World War II
Service: Navy
Battalion: Fighting Squadron 20 (VF-20)
Division: U.S.S. Enterprise (CV-6)
General Orders: Commander 1st Carrier Task Force Pacific: Serial 046 (January 31, 1945)
Citation: The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Ensign Robert Kolden Nelson (NSN: 0-305688), United States Naval Reserve, for extraordinary heroism in operations against the enemy while serving as Pilot of a carrier-based Navy Fighter Plane in Fighting Squadron TWENTY (VF-20), attached to the U.S.S. ENTERPRISE (CV-6), during action against enemy Japanese forces in the Battle for Leyte Gulf, on 25 October 1944. Fearless and determined under a terrific barrage from Japanese guns as he launched a daring attach against an enemy Fleet Task Group, Ensign Nelson plunged through a fierce hail of anti-aircraft fire to press home his relentless thrusts and, fighting his plane gallantly, succeeded in scoring a direct bomb hit on a light cruiser. By his superb airmanship and indomitable courage in the face of formidable odds, Ensign Nelson contributed materially to the accomplishment of his squadron's mission and thereby to the ultimate success of our aerial offensive in this vital theater of war. His unswerving devotion to duty throughout this and numerous other hazardous operations was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

 Ribbon Bar
Naval Aviator Wings

 Duty Stations
VF-20 Fighting 20USS Enterprise (CV-6)
  1943-1944, 131X, VF-20 Fighting 20
  1944-1944, 131X, USS Enterprise (CV-6)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1944-1944 Asiatic-Pacific Specified Raids (1944)/Formosa Air Battle
  1944-1944 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Leyte Campaign (1944)
  1944-1944 Mariana and Palau Islands Campaign (1944)/Battle of Philippine Sea
  1944-1944 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Luzon Campaign (1944-45)
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Sep 30, 2018, General Photos1
 Military Association Memberships
World War II FallenThe National Gold Star Family RegistryUnited States Navy Memorial WW II Memorial National Registry
  1944, World War II Fallen [Verified]
  2018, The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2018, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2018, WW II Memorial National Registry
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