CHARLES H. SAWERS, LCDR, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall
Charles Sawers '40

Date of birth: December 14, 1916

Date of death: July 24, 1945

Age: 28

Lucky Bag

From the 1940 Lucky Bag:

1940 Sawers LB.jpg

CHARLES H. SAWERS

Columbia, Missouri

Charlie

Anybody who isn't stone deaf has heard Good Old Charlie rending the atmosphere with the mellifluous tones of his fishhorn. His mean games of billiards and bridge give mute evidence of a carefree college life in Missouri's halls of higher learning. Always ready with a humorous slant on any predicament, his motto dictates that as long as he is happy no one can hurt him. Any afternoon in the spring or fall finds him with a can of brightwork polish in hand, applying his youngster cruise education to the brass on the Crocodile, and any week-end finds him pursuing higher seamanship on the waters of Chesapeake Bay.

N.A. Ten 4; Boat Club 3, 2, 1; Sailing 1; M.P.O.

1940 Sawers LB.jpg

CHARLES H. SAWERS

Columbia, Missouri

Charlie

Anybody who isn't stone deaf has heard Good Old Charlie rending the atmosphere with the mellifluous tones of his fishhorn. His mean games of billiards and bridge give mute evidence of a carefree college life in Missouri's halls of higher learning. Always ready with a humorous slant on any predicament, his motto dictates that as long as he is happy no one can hurt him. Any afternoon in the spring or fall finds him with a can of brightwork polish in hand, applying his youngster cruise education to the brass on the Crocodile, and any week-end finds him pursuing higher seamanship on the waters of Chesapeake Bay.

N.A. Ten 4; Boat Club 3, 2, 1; Sailing 1; M.P.O.

Loss

Charlie was lost on July 25, 1945 while conducting an attack on the remnants of the Imperial Japanese Navy during the Bombing of Kure. He was the executive officer of Bomber Fighting Squadron (VBF) 16.

Other Information

From researcher Kathy Franz:

At the University of Missouri interscholastic music meet for class A schools in May 1935, Charles was voted rank 2 for trumpet. He graduated from Hickman High School in 1935. Orchestra, ’33-’34-’35; Franklin Club, ’34-’35; Latin Club, '33; Thalian Guild, ’34; Senior Play, ’35; Hi-Y, ’35; Torch Club, ’35. If you don’t toot your own horn, nobody will toot it for you.

He was nominated to the Naval Academy by Congressman William L. Nelson. In the inauguration of President Roosevelt in January 1937, Charles (of Columbia, Missouri) marched with other Naval Academy midshipmen in the parade.

His wife was listed as next of kin. Charlie has a memory marker in Tennessee.

Photographs

Distinguished Flying Cross

From Hall of Valor:

(Citation Needed) - SYNOPSIS: Lieutenant Commander Charles Sawers (NSN: 0-85263), United States Navy, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (Posthumously) for extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight as a Fighter Pilot embarked in U.S.S. RANDOLPH over Kure, Honshu, Japan, on 24 July 1945.

General Orders: Bureau of Naval Personnel Information Bulletin No. 352 (July 1946)
Action Date: July 24, 1945
Rank: Lieutenant Commander
Division: U.S.S. Randolph


Navy Directories & Officer Registers

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.

June 1940
Ensign, USS New Orleans

Others at this command:

Others at or embarked at this command:
LT Eugene Lytle, Jr. '31 (Cruiser Scouting Squadron (VCS) 6)
November 1940
Ensign, USS New Orleans

Others at this command:
April 1941
Ensign, USS New Orleans


Class of 1940

Charles is one of 91 members of the Class of 1940 on Virtual Memorial Hall.

The "category" links below lead to lists of related Honorees; use them to explore further the service and sacrifice of alumni in Memorial Hall.