Gay, George Henry, Jr., LCDR

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Last Rank
Lieutenant Commander
Last Primary NEC
131X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Pilot
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1945-1954, 154X, Naval Reserve Forces Command
Service Years
1941 - 1954
Lieutenant Commander
Lieutenant Commander

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by William Eldard (Bill), CDR to remember Gay, George Henry, Jr. (Tex), LCDR USN(Ret).

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Contact Info
Home Town
Last Address
Marietta, GA

Date of Passing
Oct 21, 1994
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

US Army Honorable Discharge Cold War Veteran Cold War Veteran

 Military Association Memberships
USS Hornet Association
  1994, USS Hornet Association [Verified]

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Following his death, Gay was cremated and his ashes were reportedly spread over the Pacific in the same place his squadron launched its ill-fated attack.  After over 50 years, Tex rejoined the squadron formation.
Other Comments:

ENS George Gay, USNR was the sole survivor of VT-8's fifteen TBD attack on the Japanese carrier force at Midway.  When he took off from the deck of USS Hornet (CV 8) on the fateful morning of 4 Jun 42, it was the first time that he and the other ensigns in the squadron had even SEEN a TBD take off from a carrier with a torpedo onboard, let alone do it themselves.  Twenty-nine of the 30 pilots and tail-gunners perished.  He was rescued after the battle by a Navy PBY, and went on to serve with VT-11 in the Pacific campaigns.

His Navy Cross Citation reads:

For extraordinary heroism and distinguished service beyond the call of duty as a pilot of Torpedo Squadron EIGHT in the "Air Battle of Midway," against enemy Japanese forces on June 4, 1942. Grimly aware of the hazardous consequences of flying without fighter protection, and with insufficient fuel to return to his carrier, Ensign Gay, resolutely, and with no thought of his own life, delivered an effective torpedo attack against violent assaults of enemy Japanese aircraft and against an almost solid barrage of anti-aircraft fire. Although shot down while retiring from the torpedo attack, Ensign Gay, by his courage, skill and resourcefulness, survived and was subsequently able to provide valuable information concerning the action. His unflinching and conscientious devotion to the fulfillment of his mission was a determining factor in the defeat of the enemy forces and was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.
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 Ribbon Bar
Naval Aviator Wings

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
Army National Guard (ARNG)VT-8USS Hornet (CV-8)VT-11 Saufley's Satans
NAS Miami, FLNaval Reserve Forces Command
  1935-1935, Army National Guard (ARNG)
  1941-1942, 000X, VT-8
  1941-1942, 000X, USS Hornet (CV-8)
  1942-1943, 131X, VT-11 Saufley's Satans
  1943-1945, NAS Miami, FL
  1945-1954, 154X, Naval Reserve Forces Command
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1942-1942 Pacific Air Offensive (1942-45)/Doolittle B-25 Attack on Tokyo
  1942-1942 Central Pacific Campaign (1941-43)/Battle of Midway
 Colleges Attended 
Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas
  1936-1940, Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas
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