ALVIN D. BLACKMAN, LT, USN
Alvin Blackman '41
Date of birth: December 30, 1917
Date of death: October 26, 1944
From the 1941 Lucky Bag:
Alvin was lost when his F4U-1 Corsair crashed near Coyle Airfield, New Jersey on October 26, 1944 during a training flight.
He is buried in New York.
From researcher Kathy Franz:
Alvin was born in San Francisco. His father was Leon, mother Virginia, sister Helen. In 1920 Leon was an electrical engineer with a commerce company in San Francisco, in 1930 he was director "con" engineering for the Postal Telegraph Company in Chicago, and in 1940 he was a cable engineer with the Army in Brooklyn, New York. Alvin traveled with his family in September 1933 from Balboa, Canal Zone to San Francisco. His mother lived in Panama in 1935, while the rest of the family lived in California. Alvin's next of kin was Mrs. Jean Settle Blackman of Dallas, Texas (perhaps, his wife.) Alvin's mother was proud of her son as attested to by her headstone, which reads "Virginia Mae Blackman, mother of Alvin D. Blackman, U.S. Navy."
The "Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps" was published annually from 1815 through at least the 1970s; it provided rank, command or station, and occasionally billet until the beginning of World War II when command/station was no longer included. Scanned copies were reviewed and data entered from the mid-1840s through 1922, when more-frequent Navy Directories were available.
The Navy Directory was a publication that provided information on the command, billet, and rank of every active and retired naval officer. Single editions have been found online from January 1915 and March 1918, and then from three to six editions per year from 1923 through 1940; the final edition is from April 1941.
The entries in both series of documents are sometimes cryptic and confusing. They are often inconsistent, even within an edition, with the name of commands; this is especially true for aviation squadrons in the 1920s and early 1930s.
Alumni listed at the same command may or may not have had significant interactions; they could have shared a stateroom or workspace, stood many hours of watch together… or, especially at the larger commands, they might not have known each other at all. The information provides the opportunity to draw connections that are otherwise invisible, though, and gives a fuller view of the professional experiences of these alumni in Memorial Hall.
Ensign, USS Tucker