ALBEN C. ROBERTSON, LTCOL, USMC

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Alben Robertson '37

Date of birth: January 1, 1915

Date of death: December 10, 1946

Age: 31

Lucky Bag

From the 1937 Lucky Bag:

Loss

From Find A Grave:

Captain A. C. Robertson, USMC, was designated Naval Aviator #16403 in 1942. Graduated U.S. Naval Academy, Class of 1937.

Lt. Col. Robertson was the co-pilot of a Curtis R5C Commando transport plane, on a flight from SanDiego to Seattle, which crashed during bad weather on 10 December 1946 into Mount Rainier, killing all 32 U.S. Marines aboard.

His body along with the others who lost their lives on that flight all remain entombed in ice on Mount Rainier.

Recovery efforts were called off when it was decided that it would be nearly impossible to recover the bodies and the risk for the rescuers was too high.

Career

From naval aviation historian Richard Leonard:

6/3/1940 - 1LT USMC - Date of rank from 1 July 1941 Register
1/20/1942 - 1LT USMC - NAS Pensacola designated Naval Aviator # 16403
2/2/1942 - CPT USMC - Date of rank 1942 Register
8/7/1942 - MAJ USMC - Date of rank 1943 Register
8/9/1943 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 / redesignated from VMSB-134 (2d CO) MCAS Santa Barbara
10/18/1943 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) in transit
11/1/1943 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) MCAF Espiritu Santo New Hebrides
11/25/1943 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) Munda New Georgia
12/31/1943 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) MCAF Espiritu Santo New Hebrides
2/13/1944 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) Torokina Bougainville
2/17/1944 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) Torokina Bougainville. Shipping attack Keravia Bay this date: Led first forward-firing rocket mission in SoPac Theater; Robertson reported, ". . . two shorts, two hits, and two longs on an AK, two solid hits at the waterline, two HE on the side of the vessel, and two overshot."
3/15/1944 - MAJ USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) Ocean Airfield Nissan Green Islands
5/5/1944 - LTC USMC - Date of rank 1944 Register
5/8/1944 - LTC USMC - VMTB-134 (CO) MCAF Espiritu Santo New Hebrides
7/1/1944 - LTC USMC - VMTB-134 detached transf FA ComMarFAirWest Coast
10/18/1944 - LTC USMC - MBDAG-48 (CO) MCAS Santa Barbara
11/5/1944 - LTC USMC - MASG-48 (CO) MCAS Santa Barbara (redesignated from MBDAG-48)

Distinguished Flying Cross

From Hall of Valor:

Alben C. Robertson (MCSN: 0-5564), United States Marine Corps, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism and extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight, in actions against enemy Japanese forces in the Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II.

General Orders: Heroes U.S. Marine Corps 1861 - 1955 (Jane Blakeney)
Action Date: World War II
Service: Marine Corps


Class of 1937

Alben is one of 45 members of the Class of 1937 in Memorial Hall.