Graham, Calvin, SN

Deceased
 
 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Seaman
Last Primary NEC
SN-9700-Seaman - Infantry, Gun Crews, and Seamanship Specialists
Last Rating/NEC Group
Seaman
Primary Unit
1942-1943, USS South Dakota (BB-57)
Service Years
1942 - 1943
Official/Unofficial US Navy Certificates
Decommissioning
SN-Seaman

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

9 kb

Home State
Texas
Texas
Year of Birth
1930
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Kent Weekly (SS/DSV) (DBF), EMCS to remember Graham, Calvin (12 year old sailor), SN.

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.
 
Contact Info
Home Town
Not Specified
Last Address
Born in Canton, Tx, grew up in Crockett, Tx. Died in Fort Worth, TX

Date of Passing
Nov 06, 1992
 
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 




 Unofficial Badges 






 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Calvin Graham, 62, Who Fought in War As a 12-Year-Old 

Published: November 9, 1992

Calvin L. Graham, who gained attention as the boy who lied so he could enlist in the Navy at age 12 during World War II, died Friday in his house in Fort Worth. He was 62 years old.

He died of heart failure, said his stepson, Ronnie O'Donley.

The young Mr. Graham was a gunner on the U.S.S. South Dakota while it was buffeted by the Japanese in the Battle of Guadalcanal in 1942. He was struck in the jaw and mouth by shrapnel while his battleship suffered 47 enemy hits. Though seriously wounded, he helped pull other crew members to safety.

The next year, the Navy discovered Mr. Graham's age. He became known to headline-writers as the "baby vet" after the Navy gave him a dishonorable discharge and revoked his disability benefits and his decorations, including a Purple Heart and Bronze Star. Sought Return of Medals

In later years he struggled to get the decorations and the benefits back and to get an honorable discharge, retroactively. He was aided by political figures like the Senators Lloyd Bentsen, a Democrat, and John G. Tower, a Republican, both of Texas.

In a 1978 interview, Mr. Graham said the discharge program for Vietnam War deserters had given him a hope of getting his discharge at last. He said he "damn sure" deserved one more than a deserter did.

Eventually, he got the discharge, and won back all his decorations, except the Purple Heart. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan signed legislation that granted him disability benefits.

Mr. Graham, the youngest of the six children in a farm family, was born in Canton, Tex., grew up in Crockett, Tex., and quit school there to join the Navy. For years after the war he sold subscriptions to Life, Look and other magazines by telephone.

In addition to Mr. O'Donley, he is survived by his wife of 24 years, the former Mary Winfield O'Donley; a stepdaughter, Lora O'Donley, both also of Fort Worth; a step-granddaughter; and a sister, Eve Lue Sharman of Polk County, Tex.

   
Other Comments:
He enlisted in the US Navy at the age of 12.

If anyone has any other information about Calvin Graham please contact me..
   
 Photo Album   (More...



Guadalcanal Campaign (1942-42)/Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands
Start Year
1942
End Year
1942

Description
The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, 26 October 1942, sometimes referred to as the Battle of Santa Cruz or in Japanese sources as the Battle of the South Pacific, was the fourth carrier battle of the Pacific campaign of World War II and the fourth major naval engagement fought between the United States Navy and the Imperial Japanese Navy during the lengthy and strategically important Guadalcanal campaign. In similar fashion to the battles of Coral Sea, Midway, and the Eastern Solomons, the ships of the two adversaries were rarely in direct visual range of each other. Instead, almost all attacks by both sides were mounted by carrier or land-based aircraft.

In an attempt to drive Allied forces from Guadalcanal and nearby islands and end the stalemate that had existed since September 1942, the Imperial Japanese Army planned a major ground offensive on Guadalcanal for 20–25 October 1942. In support of this offensive, and with the hope of engaging Allied naval forces, Japanese carriers and other large warships moved into a position near the southern Solomon Islands. From this location, the Japanese naval forces hoped to engage and decisively defeat any Allied (primarily U.S.) naval forces, especially carrier forces, that responded to the ground offensive. Allied naval forces also hoped to meet the Japanese naval forces in battle, with the same objectives of breaking the stalemate and decisively defeating their adversary.

The Japanese ground offensive on Guadalcanal was under way in the Battle for Henderson Field while the naval warships and aircraft from the two adversaries confronted each other on the morning of 26 October 1942, just north of the Santa Cruz Islands. After an exchange of carrier air attacks, Allied surface ships were forced to retreat from the battle area with one carrier sunk and another heavily damaged. The participating Japanese carrier forces, however, also retired because of high aircraft and aircrew losses plus significant damage to two carriers. Although a tactical victory for the Japanese in terms of ships sunk and damaged, the loss of many irreplaceable, veteran aircrews would prove to be a long term strategic advantage for the Allies, whose aircrew losses in the battle were relatively low and could be quickly replaced. The high cost of the battle for the Japanese prevented their carrier forces from further significant involvement in the Guadalcanal campaign.
   
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Year
1942
To Year
1942
 
Last Updated:
Jan 14, 2008
   
Personal Memories

Memories
Battle damage to the South Dakota:

One bomb hit on turret No. 1. Some damage to guns of turret No. 2

   
My Photos From This Battle or Operation
USS South Dakota (BB-57) Battle of Santa Cruz Island
USS South Dakota (BB-57) Battle of Santa Cruz Island
  USS South Dakota (BB-57) and Japanese Torpedo Bomber

  71 Also There at This Battle:
 
  • Harp, Edward Blaine, RADM, (1929-1961)
  • Prince, James, PO2, (1940-1946)
  • Rhodes, Raleigh Ernest, CDR, (1940-1961)
  • Siebler, Jerome, S1c, (1942-1942)
  • Snincsak, Theodore Michael, S2c, (1942-1942)
  • Vejtasa, Stanley Winfield, CAPT, (1938-1970)
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