HAROLD J. VON WELLER, LTJG, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall
Harold Von Weller '33

Date of birth: December 29, 1909

Date of death: July 28, 1940

Age: 30

Lucky Bag

From the 1933 Lucky Bag:

1933 Von Weller LB.jpg

HAROLD JOHN Von WELLER

Albany, Georgia

"Von" "Georgia"

Von was born a "snake," a breaker of hearts. He is the delight of doting mammas; patronizing pappas pronounce him a fine young man; and an English instructor once said that he had the most liquid line of loquacity ever known to flow in a Plebe public speaking class. Sunday evenings he sits, chair tilted back, feet on the table, swapping stories and going one better, the wildest tale of any cruise. His power as a raconteur is that of the Ancient Mariner and no one has ever caught him up on one of those tall stories yet. But who wants to? His yarns are too good to doubt.

During his Plebe Year Von made the goal that saved the Navy record of never seeing its Plebe lacrosse team suffer defeat. However, after the "Dago" Department decided that he should leave '32 to join us, athletics have had to yield him up to fields of academic endeavor in which he has risen to a standing well above mediocrity.

Von is a polished gentleman, deeply versed in the art of social intercourse and a loyal and sympathetic friend.

Football 4; Lacrosse 4; Boxing 4; Class Lacrosse 3, 2, 1; Class Supper Committee; Ring Dance Committee; June Ball Committee; Manager Cut Exchange 1; Log Board 1; 2 Stripes

1933 Von Weller LB.jpg

HAROLD JOHN Von WELLER

Albany, Georgia

"Von" "Georgia"

Von was born a "snake," a breaker of hearts. He is the delight of doting mammas; patronizing pappas pronounce him a fine young man; and an English instructor once said that he had the most liquid line of loquacity ever known to flow in a Plebe public speaking class. Sunday evenings he sits, chair tilted back, feet on the table, swapping stories and going one better, the wildest tale of any cruise. His power as a raconteur is that of the Ancient Mariner and no one has ever caught him up on one of those tall stories yet. But who wants to? His yarns are too good to doubt.

During his Plebe Year Von made the goal that saved the Navy record of never seeing its Plebe lacrosse team suffer defeat. However, after the "Dago" Department decided that he should leave '32 to join us, athletics have had to yield him up to fields of academic endeavor in which he has risen to a standing well above mediocrity.

Von is a polished gentleman, deeply versed in the art of social intercourse and a loyal and sympathetic friend.

Football 4; Lacrosse 4; Boxing 4; Class Lacrosse 3, 2, 1; Class Supper Committee; Ring Dance Committee; June Ball Committee; Manager Cut Exchange 1; Log Board 1; 2 Stripes

Biography

1933 Von Weller 1.jpg

From the 1953 edition of the book "Double Three Roundup," published by the class of 1933:

Shortly after graduation Von was commissioned Ensign in the Naval Reserve, and on 19 June 1934, he was transferred to the regular Navy. He served a year in the MINNEAPOLIS, and then a short period in the GREER before being ordered to Pensacola for flight training. He was designated Naval Aviator on 16 June 1937, and in that same year he married Virginia Clifford Pace of Pensacola.

From 1937 to 1939 he had duty as a pilot first with Patrol Squadron 14 and then Patrol Squadron 52. In July 1940 he reported for duty as a flight instructor at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola. A few days thereafter, while instructing a student, he was involved in an airplane accident. He died on 26 July 1940 at the Naval Hospital in Pensacola.

Virginia and Von had no children. She has since married A. J. Connell and is now living at 7 N. Kensington Road, Asheville, North Carolina.

The other officer aboard was seriously injured.

Harold is buried in Florida.

Career

He earned his wings as naval aviator #5248 on June 16, 1937. (Note he is listed as "USN" and his name is spelled "VONWELLER".)

Memorial Hall Error

Harold is listed in Memorial Hall as a ENS, USNR; he was a LTjg and not a member of the reserves when he was lost.

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.

July 1934
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
October 1934
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
January 1935
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
April 1935
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
October 1935
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
January 1936
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
April 1936
Ensign, USS Minneapolis

Others at this command:
September 1937
Lieutenant (j.g.), Patrol Squadron (VP) 14
January 1938
Lieutenant (j.g.), Patrol Squadron (VP) 14
July 1938
Lieutenant (j.g.), Patrol Squadron (VP) 14
January 1939
Lieutenant (j.g.), Patrol Squadron (VP) 14, Norfolk, Virginia
October 1939
Lieutenant (j.g.), Patrol Squadron (VP) 52, Norfolk, Virginia

June 1940
Lieutenant (j.g.), Patrol Squadron (VP) 52, Norfolk, Virginia

Others at this command:


Class of 1933

Harold is one of 38 members of the Class of 1933 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.