Callaghan, William, VADM

Deceased
 
 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Vice Admiral
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1956-1957, Commander, Western Sea Frontier
Service Years
1918 - 1957
Vice Admiral
Vice Admiral

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

79 kb

Home State
California
California
Year of Birth
1897
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Steven Loomis (SaigonShipyard), IC3 to remember Callaghan, William (Bill), VADM.

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Contact Info
Home Town
San Francisco
Last Address
Arlington County, Virginia
Arlington National Cemetery

Date of Passing
Jul 08, 1991
 
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

US Merchant Marine Service US Navy Retired 30


 Unofficial Badges 






 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
William McCombe Callaghan
Vice Admiral, United States Navy


Vice Admiral William McCombe Callaghan (August 8, 1897 - July 8, 1991), born in San Francisco, California, was a U.S. naval officer and the first commander of the USS Missouri (BB-63). 

Callaghan graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1918. After commanding the USS Reuben James (DE-153) in 1936, he joined the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations in 1939.

In 1944, Captain Callaghan was named the first commanding officer of the Missouri, the Navy's newest battleship. 

On April 11, 1945, USS Missouri was struck by a kamikaze off the coast of Okinawa. The damage was minor, and no one died aboard this battleship except the Japanese pilot, Setsuo Ishino, whose body was recovered. Captain Callaghan insisted that the young Japanese airman had done his job to the best of his ability and with honor and deserved a military funeral. The following day, April 12, 1945, the pilot was given a military funeral at sea. 

During the Korean War, Callaghan commanded U.S. naval forces in the Far East. He retired in 1957. 

Senior commands 
In 1946, Callaghan held the rank of Rear Admiral, and in that year gave a presentation to the Naval War College on his experience in the Naval Transportation Service before the war. On October 1, 1949, he was appointed as the first commander of the Military Sea Transportation Service, which would later become the Military Sealift Command. He was promoted from Rear Admiral to Vice Admiral around this time. From 1953 to 1954, during the Korean War, he commanded the Amphibious Force of the US Pacific Fleet. From 1954 to 1956, he served as Commander, US Naval Forces Far East. He then replaced retiring Vice Admiral Francis Low as Commander of the Western Sea Frontier. He retired from the US Navy at the rank of Vice Admiral in 1957.

Admiral Callaghan died July 8, 1991, at Bethesda Naval Hospital after suffering a stroke. 
   
Other Comments:
William M. Callaghan a retired Navy Vice Admiral, 93, who served as Commanding Officer of the USS Missouri in World War II, died July 8, 1991 at Bethesda Naval Hospital after suffering a stroke four weeks ago. 

The California native graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1918 and served aboard a destroyer in World War I. He later assumed command of the USS Reuben James in 1936. After joining the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations in 1939, he was war plans officer for logistics for the commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet. For his performance, was awarded the Legion of Merit. 

In 1944, Admiral Callaghan commissioned the USS Missouri and commanded it in operations against Tokyo, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. 

During the Korean War, he served as commander of Naval forces in the Far East. 

Years of service: 1918–1957
Rank: USN-O9, Vice Admiral
Commands held:
USS Reuben James (DD-245)
USS Missouri (BB-63)
Military Sea Transportation Service
Battles/wars:
World War I
World War II, Battle of Okinawa
Korean War
Awards:
Legion of Merit
Order of the Rising Sun
Order of the White Elephant
Order of Boyaca
Namesake: A transport ship named the GTS Admiral Wm. M. Callaghan (AKR-1001).

   
 Photo Album   (More...



World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Okinawa Gunto Operation
From Month/Year
March / 1945
To Month/Year
June / 1945

Description
The Battle of Okinawa, codenamed Operation Iceberg. was fought on the Ryukyu Islands of Okinawa and was the largest amphibious assault in the Pacific War of World War II. The 82-day-long battle lasted from early April until mid-June 1945. After a long campaign of island hopping, the Allies were approaching Japan, and planned to use Okinawa, a large island only 340 mi (550 km) away from mainland Japan, as a base for air operations on the planned invasion of Japanese mainland (coded Operation Downfall). Four divisions of the U.S. 10th Army (the 7th, 27th, 77th, and 96th) and two Marine Divisions (the 1st and 6th) fought on the island. Their invasion was supported by naval, amphibious, and tactical air forces.

The battle has been referred to as the "typhoon of steel" in English, and tetsu no ame ("rain of steel") or ("violent wind of steel") in Japanese. The nicknames refer to the ferocity of the fighting, the intensity of kamikaze attacks from the Japanese defenders, and to the sheer numbers of Allied ships and armored vehicles that assaulted the island. The battle resulted in the highest number of casualties in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Based on Okinawan government sources, mainland Japan lost 77,166 soldiers, who were either killed or committed suicide, and the Allies suffered 14,009 deaths (with an estimated total of more than 65,000 casualties of all kinds). Simultaneously, 42,000–150,000 local civilians were killed or committed suicide, a significant proportion of the local population. The atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki together with the Soviet invasion of Manchuria caused Japan to surrender less than two months after the end of the fighting on Okinawa.
   
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Month/Year
March / 1945
To Month/Year
June / 1945
 
Last Updated:
Mar 16, 2020
   
Personal Memories

Memories
In 1944, Admiral Callaghan commissioned the USS Missouri and commanded it in operations against Tokyo, Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

   
My Photos From This Battle or Operation
No Available Photos

  983 Also There at This Battle:
  • Abbott, Earl James, Cox, (1943-1946)
  • Adams, Richard W, PO2, (1943-1947)
  • Albanesi, Thomas, PO1, (1943-1946)
  • Bagby, Henry Lawton, CAPT, (1941-1970)
  • Baldwin, Robert B., VADM, (1941-1980)
  • Barr, John Andrew, PO3, (1943-1946)
  • Baruzzini, Joseph Louis, LCDR, (1944-1964)
  • Baylor, Warner, LCDR, (1942-1963)
  • Beam, Joe, MCPO, (1941-2004)
  • Bell, Lloyd, PO3, (1942-1948)
  • Bibb, James, PO2, (1942-1945)
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