Blessman, Edward Martin, LT

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 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
1939-1942, USS Marblehead (CL-12)
Service Years
1931 - 1942

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
North Dakota
North Dakota
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Kent Weekly (SS/DSV) (DBF), EMCS to remember Blessman, Edward Martin, LT.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Appleton, WI
Last Address
Appleson, WI

Casualty Date
Feb 04, 1942
Hostile, Died
Other Explosive Device
World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/East Indies Campaign (1941-42)/Battle of Java Sea
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
WW II Memorial National RegistryWorld War II FallenUnited States Navy Memorial The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2015, WW II Memorial National Registry
  2015, World War II Fallen
  2015, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2015, The National Gold Star Family Registry

 Ribbon Bar
Naval Aviator Wings

 Duty Stations
USS Maryland (BB-46)US NavyNAS PensacolaSchool Assignments - Staff
USS Saratoga (CV-3)VS-2NAS Anacostia
  1931-1933, USS Maryland (BB-46)
  1933-1933, USS Hale (DD-133)
  1933-1934, NAS Pensacola
  1933-1934, Naval Flight Training
  1934-1935, Commander Aircraft Battle Force
  1934-1936, USS Saratoga (CV-3)
  1935-1936, VS-2
  1936-1937, VP-17F Mad Foxes/Blind Foxes
  1936-1937, USS Thrush (AM-18)
  1937-1939, NAS Anacostia
  1939-1939, NAS Anacostia
  1939-1939, 16th Naval District
  1939-1942, USS Marblehead (CL-12)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1945 World War II
  1942-1942 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater
  1942-1942 East Indies Campaign (1941-42)/Battle of Java Sea
  1942-1942 East Indies Campaign (1941-42)/Battle of Balikpapan (Makassar Strait)
 Colleges Attended 
United States Naval Academy
  1927-1931, United States Naval Academy1
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Jun 21, 1927, Appointed Midshipman
  Jun 04, 1931, Commissioned Ensign
  Jan 12, 1939, Promoted to LT
  Feb 11, 1942, Obituary - Appleton Post Crescent
  Mar 17, 1943, Obituary - Appleton Post Cresent
  Sep 19, 1943, Namesake _ USS Blessman (DE-69)
  Feb 04, 2015, General Photos
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Blessman was born in Nott, North Dakota. He was appointed midshipman from the 9th District of Wisconsin on 21 June 1927 and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy on 4 June 1931. Service at sea in the battleship Maryland (BB-46) and the destroyer Hale (DD-133) preceded flight training at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, in Florida, after which he served in VS-2B in the aircraft carrier Lexington (CV-2) and VP-17F, based on the seaplane tender Thrush (AVP-3). Following a two-year tour at the NAS Anacostia, Blessman — promoted to lieutenant in January 1939 — joined Marblehead (CL-12), then with the U.S. Asiatic Fleet, on 10 December 1939. He was still serving in her when Japan launched its onslaught in the Far East in December 1941.

On 4 February 1942, Marblehead stood out of Surabaya, Java, as part of a mixed American-Dutch cruiser-destroyer force under Rear Admiral Karel W. F. M. Doorman, RNN. Japanese flying boats from the Toko kokutai (Toko Air Group), however, spotted the force as it attempted to transit the Madoera Strait to attack the Japanese invasion fleet bound for Borneo. Thus forewarned, Japanese naval land attack planes bombed the allied force. At 10:27, a stick of seven bombs from a Mitsubishi G4M1 "Betty" bomber of Kanoya  kokutai straddled Marblehead. The first of the two bombs to hit the ship penetrated the main deck and exploded near “wardroom country,” the blast ripping through the light sheet metal bulkheads that comprised the boundaries of the compartment. Blessman, who, as the ship’s senior aviator had no air defense station and was in the wardroom at the time, was killed instantly by the concussion.
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