ARTHUR H. PAGE, JR., CAPT, USMC

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Arthur Page, Jr. '18

Date of birth: September 17, 1895

Date of death: September 1, 1930

Age: 34

Lucky Bag

From the 1918 Lucky Bag:

The Class of 1918 was graduated on June 28, 1917 due to World War I.

Loss

From Find A Grave:

Second Lieutenant A. H. Page, USMC, was designated Naval Aviator #536 on 14 March 1918. Later assigned #775 by the Marine Corps. Graduated U.S. Naval Academy in 1917, Class of 1918 (one year early due to the World War).

Awarded the DFC (posthumous) for completing the longest recorded blind flight, from Omaha, Neb. to Anacostia, WDC on 21 July 1930.

Died as the result of his sacrificial crash during the Thompson Trophy Race at the National Air Races, in Chicago.

Page Field at MCB Parris Is., SC was named in his honor on 19 Sept. 1938.

Was the son of Arthur Senior and the former Miss Mina Smith. Had married Miss Florence I. Shaw in 1917.

His wife remarried another Marine (who was later killed in action at Guadalcanal); she then remarried again to a third Marine, Brigadier General Charles Sanderson. He was also survived by a son, Arthur H. Page, III.

Career

Arthur was earlier commanding officer of the "4th Air Squadron" in 1921.

Distinguished Flying Cross

From Hall of Valor:

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Flying Cross to Captain Arthur H. Page, Jr. (MCSN: 0-730), United States Marine Corps, for extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight on 21 July 1930. Captain Page successfully completed the longest recorded blind flight as pilot in an 2U-1 airplane from Omaha, Nebraska, to Anacostia, D.C., a distance of approximately one thousand miles, flying blind the entire distance, at time through rain storms and clouds and negotiating the entire flight in one day. Captain Page's pioneering, scientific study and successful accomplishments in the art of blind flying have contributed much towards the advancement of aeronautics.

General Orders: CITATION:
Service: Marine Corps
Rank: Captain

His widow is pictured with the Commandant of the Marine Corps and the Assistant Secretary of the Navy in 1930.

Other

From A modeling kit description:

The Curtiss “Page Racer” is one of the more mysterious speed machines of the Golden Age of air racing, and Army / Navy rivalry in the Pulitzer and Thompson races. Built under false fighter designation, from borrowed and “appropriated” components, the XF6C-6 began life as a fairly common Curtiss Hawk and went from an ungainly biplane to a sleek parasol monoplane in relative secrecy. In every sense this plane was a true Hot Rod. Unlike the service Hawk, the racer had a supercharged Curtiss Conqueror engine, and used nearly flush mounted corrugated brass surface radiators for cooling., and streamlining was taken to extremes with fillets at all strut junctions and no zippered servicing patches in the covering of the fuselage. A beautifully shaped cowl and spinner covered the V-12 engine, with hooded exhausts barely protruding into the airstream. The pilot's head was faired into the fuselage fore and aft in an effort to reduce drag.

In the 1930 Thompson race, the XF6C-6 tragically crashed on it’s 17th lap when Captain Page was overcome by carbon monoxide fumes trapped in the fuselage. When the facts concerning the construction of the racer became known, there was quite a scandal and a number of Courts-Martial were held and careers ruined. One is left wondering how differently things might have played out had the Page Racer won the race as it was obviously capable of and had Captain Page survived to bring glory to the Navy and Marines.


Class of 1918

Arthur is one of 14 members of the Class of 1918 in Memorial Hall.