FESTUS F. FOSTER, CAPT, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Festus Foster '19

Date of birth: January 18, 1899

Date of death: March 3, 1945

Age: 46

Lucky Bag

From the 1919 Lucky Bag:


Loss & Biography

From Find A Grave:

Captain, USN s/n 37282. Graduated from U S Naval Academy in the class of 1919. Son of Festus R. Foster and Jennie Lillian C. Howe. He was killed in an air crash bringing USO performers from England to France, according to information provided by contributor Dwight "Andy" Anderson. He married Beatrice Michelson, the daughter of physicist Alfred A Michelson, first American to win a Nobel Prize for the sciences. One daughter, Barbara, and one son, Jeremy. Beatrice died in an automobile accident in Hamilton, Loudoun County, Virginia, in December 1972.

Captain Festus F. Foster (NSN: 0-37282), United States Navy, was awarded the Legion of Merit (Posthumously) for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services to the Government of the United States during World War II.

Festus was a passenger on C-47A #43-48223 that was assigned to the 1403rd Base Unit, U.S. Army Air Force.

Service and burial information from USNA Register of Alumni and U.S. Rosters of World War II Dead, 1939-1945.

His wife was listed as next of kin.

Legion of Merit

From Hall of Valor:

(Citation Needed) - SYNOPSIS: Captain Festus F. Foster (NSN: 0-37282), United States Navy, was awarded the Legion of Merit (Posthumously) for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services to the Government of the United States during World War II.

General Orders: American Battle Monuments Commission
Service: Navy
Rank: Captain

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.

January 1919

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS Oklahoma

January 1920

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS Oklahoma

Others at this command: ENS Elmer Kiehl '20 and ENS Frank Conant, II '20.

January 1921

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS Oklahoma

Others at this command: ENS Elmer Kiehl '20 and ENS Frank Conant, II '20.

January 1922

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS Oklahoma

Others at this command: ENS Elmer Kiehl '20.

May 1923

Lieutenant, USS Oklahoma

Others at this command: ENS Merritt Flanders '22.

July 1923

Lieutenant, USS Oklahoma

Others at this command: ENS Merritt Flanders '22 and ENS William Hobby, Jr. '23.

November 1923

Lieutenant, under instruction, Naval Academy

Others at this command: CDR Isaac Kidd '06, LCDR Fred Berry '08, LCDR Franklin Van Valkenburgh '09, LCDR Joseph Murphy '09, LT Harold MacLellan '18, and LT Robert Smith, Jr. '19.

January 1924

Lieutenant, under instruction, Naval Academy

Others at this command: CDR Isaac Kidd '06, LCDR Fred Berry '08, LCDR Franklin Van Valkenburgh '09, LCDR Joseph Murphy '09, LT Harold MacLellan '18, and LT Robert Smith, Jr. '19.

September 1924

Lieutenant, under instruction, University of Chicago

November 1924

Lieutenant, under instruction, University of Chicago

January 1925

Lieutenant, under instruction, University of Chicago

March 1925

Lieutenant, under instruction, University of Chicago

May 1925

Lieutenant, under instruction, University of Chicago

July 1925

Lieutenant, under instruction, Navy Yard, Washington, D.C.

October 1925

Lieutenant, under instruction, Navy Yard, Washington, D.C.

January 1926

Lieutenant, under instruction, Navy Yard, Washington, D.C.

April 1927

Lieutenant, USS New Mexico

Others at this command: ENS Douglas Smith '25, ENS Jack DeShazo '25, ENS Julian Morrison, Jr. '25, ENS Henry G'Sell '26, and ENS Louis Shane, Jr. '26.

October 1927

Lieutenant, USS New Mexico

Others at this command: ENS Julian Morrison, Jr. '25.

Others at or embarked at this command: LT Henry Brandenburger '21 (Observation Plane Squadron (VO) 2B).

January 1928

Lieutenant, USS New Mexico

Others at this command: ENS Gerald Dyson '27.

Others at or embarked at this command: LT Henry Brandenburger '21 (Observation Plane Squadron (VO) 2B).

April 1928

Lieutenant, USS New Mexico

Others at this command: ENS Gerald Dyson '27.

Others at or embarked at this command: LT Henry Brandenburger '21 (Observation Plane Squadron (VO) 2B).

July 1928

Lieutenant, USS New Mexico

Others at this command: ENS Gerald Dyson '27.

October 1928

Lieutenant, USS New Mexico

Others at this command: ENS Gerald Dyson '27 and ENS John Burke '28.

January 1929

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

April 1929

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

July 1929

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

October 1929

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

January 1930

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

April 1930

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

October 1930

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

January 1931

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

April 1931

Lieutenant, Naval Proving Ground, Dahlgren, Virginia

July 1931

Lieutenant, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: CDR Mervyn Bennion '10 and LT Arnold Isbell '21.

October 1931

Lieutenant, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: CDR Mervyn Bennion '10 and LT Arnold Isbell '21.

January 1932

Lieutenant, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: CDR Mervyn Bennion '10 and LT Arnold Isbell '21.

April 1932

Lieutenant, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: CDR Mervyn Bennion '10 and LT Arnold Isbell '21.

October 1932

Lieutenant, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: LT Arnold Isbell '21.

January 1933

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: LT Arnold Isbell '21.

April 1933

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: LT Arnold Isbell '21.

July 1933

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: LT Arnold Isbell '21.

October 1933

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: LT Arnold Isbell '21.

April 1934

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

Others at this command: LT Arnold Isbell '21.

July 1934

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

October 1934

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

January 1935

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

April 1935

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

October 1935

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

January 1936

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

April 1936

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

July 1936

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

January 1937

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

April 1937

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

September 1937

Lieutenant Commander, Bureau of Ordnance, Washington, D.C.

January 1938

Lieutenant Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

July 1938

Lieutenant Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

Others at this command: LCDR George Brooke '21.

January 1939

Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

Others at this command: LCDR George Brooke '21.

October 1939

Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

Others at this command: LCDR George Brooke '21.

June 1940

Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

November 1940

Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

April 1941

Commander, Navy Yard, Mare Island, California


Class of 1919

Festus is one of 11 members of the Class of 1919 on Virtual Memorial Hall.