Baker, Wilder Dupuy, VADM

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Last Rank
Vice Admiral
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1949-1952, 11th Naval District
Service Years
1914 - 1952
Vice Admiral
Vice Admiral

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Steven Loomis (SaigonShipyard), IC3 to remember Baker, Wilder Dupuy, VADM.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Topeka, KS
Last Address
San Diego, CA

Date of Passing
Nov 10, 1975
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

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Last Known Activity

Wilder Baker graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Class of 1914. He retired as a Vice Admiral in the U.S. Navy. Admiral Wilder Baker, namesake of Admiral Baker Field in San Diego. Distinguished Member: Companions of the Naval Order, Insignia No. 03022 - the oldest, exclusively naval, American society...eleven years older than the Navy League.

Captain Wilder Dupuy Baker was the commanding officer of the battleship North Carolina (BB-55) from 5 December 1942 to 27 May 1943. Early in the Second World War he helped create the Antisubmarine Warfare Operational Research Group (ASWORG). He commanded cruiser-destroyer forces in the Aleutians and amphibious forces in the invasion of Saipan. He later was chief of staff of Task Force 38 under McCain. Together with Captain "Jimmy" Thach, McCain's operations officer, they devised tactics for using picket destroyers with combat air patrols to defend against kamikaze attacks. 

In the U.S. Navy, Admiral Baker perhaps was best known as the chief of staff to Admiral John S. McCain.  

Admiral Baker (1890-1975) was among the senior officers in the theatre at the time of Japan's surrender in 1945, having led a task force that attacked the Japanese home islands. Before the U.S. entered World War II, he helped develop tactics for anti-submarine warfare while escorting American convoys to England and dodging German U-boats.  For all the wartime action he saw, it was Admiral Baker's peacetime role as the commandant of the 11th Naval District that resulted in his name being immortalized at the recreational facility located on what had been a portion of Camp Elliot.  When the postwar decision was made to designate a portion of Camp Elliot as Miramar Marine Corps Air Station and to decommission other portions of the camp, Baker urged that a portion of the facility be set aside for the recreational needs of active duty military personnel and retired members of the Armed Services. Over the ensuing decades, Miramar was turned over to the Navy, and then back to the Marine Corps, while decommissioned portions of the huge base eventually were developed into the community of Tierrasanta and left in its natural state as Mission Trails Regional Park.  

Wilder DePuy Baker retired with the rank of Vice Admiral in 1952.

Other Comments:

Navy Cross
Awarded for actions during the World War II 
The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Rear Admiral Wilder DuPuy Baker (NSN: 0-8703), United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commander, Task Force NINETY-FOUR (TF-94), in the Pacific theater of operations from June 1943 to March 1944. During this period, Rear Admiral Baker operated the forces under his command under adverse weather conditions, conducting the first surface bombardment of the Japanese home islands and led the first offensive operations into the Sea of Okhotak. His courage, professional ability and outstanding leadership were responsible for the successful completion of all operations undertaken against the enemy without casualties or damage to his own forces. Rear Admiral Baker's conduct throughout was in keeping with the highest traditions of the Navy of the United States.

General Orders: Commander In Chief Pacific Fleet: Serial 01892 (May 14, 1944)
Action Date: June 1943 - March 1944
Service: Navy
Rank: Rear Admiral
Company: Commander
Division: Task Force 94

Silver Star
Awarded for actions during the World War II
The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Rear Admiral Wilder DuPuy Baker (NSN: 0-8703), United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as Chief of Staff to the Commander of Task Group THIRTY-EIGHT POINT ONE (TG-38.1) during the period 13 through 15 October 1944, off Formosa. Rear Admiral Baker's skillful high speed maneuvering and use of smoke by the Task Group, while interposing itself between two crippled cruisers and the major enemy air threat, enabled their successful withdrawal and eventual salvage. He resolved the problems presented by repeated and persistent air attacks and he maneuvered the Task Group with such skill and exceptional judgment that the enemy was forced to break off his attacks after suffering heavy losses. His courage and disregard for his own safety were at all times in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

Action Date: October 13 - 15, 1944
Service: Navy
Rank: Rear Admiral
Company: Chief of Staff to the Commander
Division: Task Group 38.1

Legion of Merit
Awarded for actions during the World War II
The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Legion of Merit with Combat "V" to Rear Admiral Wilder DuPuy Baker (NSN: 0-8703), United States Navy, for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services to the Government of the United States as Chief of Staff to the Commander, Second Carrier Task Force, Pacific, from 18 August 1944 to 25 January 1945. His complete grasp of the manifold functions involved in connection with operations against the enemy in the Palau Islands, the Philippines, the Nansei Shoto Group, Formosa, and the coast of Indo-China was a vital factor in the highly efficient execution of these missions. His professional skill in maneuvering the ships of the Task Force against sustained enemy aerial attack not only was instrumental in bringing an extremely high percentage of ships unscathed through these actions, but made possible the infliction of tremendous damage on the enemy by the aircraft based on carriers in the Task Force. His diligence, indefatigable energy and devotion to duty were at all times in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. (Rear Admiral Baker is authorized to wear the Combat "V".)

General Orders: Commander 2d Carrier Task Force Pacific: Serial 01223 (February 5, 1945)
Action Date: August 18, 1944 - January 25, 1945
Service: Navy
Rank: Rear Admiral
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Submarine Officer Badge

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
US NavyUSS Fulton (AS-1)NAVSUBASE New London/GrotonCNO - OPNAV
Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV)Naval Attache/Asst Naval Attache, CNO - OPNAVCommander, US Fleet Forces Command (COMUSFLTFORCOM)DESRON 31, COMNAVSURFGRU MIDPAC
Commander-in-Chief, US Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT)Commander in Chief Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT)/Commander Pacific Fleet (COMPACFLT)Commander in Chief Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT)/Commander Pacific Fleet (COMPACFLT)Bureau of Naval Personnel (BUPERS)
Commander, US Fleet Forces Command (COMUSFLTFORCOM)11th Naval District
  1914-1915, USS Florida (BB-30)
  1915-1916, USS Dubuque (PG-17)
  1916-1917, USS Fulton (AS-1)
  1917-1917, NAVSUBASE New London/Groton
  1917-1917, USS F-1 (SS-20)
  1917-1919, USS L-11 (SS-51)
  1919-1920, USS L-3 (SS-42)
  1922-1923, USS S-11 (SS-116)
  1923-1924, USS S-13 (SS-118)
  1925-1926, USS Marcus (DD-321)
  1926-1928, USS Kidder (DD-319)
  1928-1930, CNO - OPNAV
  1930-1933, USS Wyoming (AG-17)
  1934-1935, General Board, Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV)
  1935-1936, Naval Attache Office (NAO) London, Naval Attache/Asst Naval Attache
  1936-1936, Commander, Special Service Squadron, Commander, US Fleet Forces Command (COMUSFLTFORCOM)
  1942-1942, Commander-in-Chief, US Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT)
  1942-1942, Commander in Chief, United States Fleet (CINCUS)
  1942-1943, USS North Carolina (BB-55)
  1943-1944, Commander, Battleships-Cruisers, Pacific Fleet (ComBatCruPac)
  1944-1945, Fast Carrier Task Force
  1945-1946, Bureau of Naval Personnel (BUPERS)
  1946-1947, Boston Navy Yard
  1947-1949, Commander Service Force, Atlantic Fleet, Commander, US Fleet Forces Command (COMUSFLTFORCOM)
  1949-1952, 11th Naval District
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1917-1918 World War I
  1927-1927 US Occupation of Nicaragua
  1942-1942 Guadalcanal-Tulagi landings/Battle of Savo Island
  1942-1942 Guadalcanal Campaign (1942-42)/Battle of the Eastern Solomons
  1945-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Okinawa Gunto Operation
  1945-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Surrender of Japan, End of WWII
  1945-1945 US Occupation of Japan
 Colleges Attended 
United States Naval Academy
  1910-1914, United States Naval Academy
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Wilder Dupuy Baker and Constance North Metcalfe2
  Family stories about Admiral Baker of wartime and golfing fame
  USS Recruit (TDE-1), aka USS Neversail1
  Jun 05, 1914, Commissioned as Ensign
  Jun 06, 1920, Promoted to Lieutenant
  Jun 04, 1925, Promoted to Lieutenant Commander
  Jun 30, 1935, Promoted to Commander
  May 01, 1941, Promoted to Captain
  May 27, 1943, Promoted to Rear Admiral
  May 14, 1944, NAVY CROSS: Wilder DuPuy Baker3
  Aug 30, 2012, General Photos
  Aug 30, 2012, UPDATE information provided by the family1
 Military Associations and Other Affiliations
Naval Order of the United StatesWWII Memorial National RegistryUnited States Navy Memorial
  1945, Naval Order of the United States
  2020, WWII Memorial National Registry
  2020, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
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