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Birthdate & Date of Loss

Date of birth: March 1, 1920
Date of death: July 4, 1952
Age: 32

Lucky Bag

1944 Griffith LB.jpg

From the 1944 Lucky Bag:

Jack Walter Griffith

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Tall, dark and vociferous, Griffith was easy to know and everybody's friend. He was champion of the plebes, making it his duty to see that they were not unduly trod upon. Except for a shot at battalion swimming plebe year, he didn't go in for sports or other extracurricular activities to any great extent. Instead, he spent most of his time trying to beat the Executive Department, which, recognising his efforts in this field, bestowed the coveted "Black N" as a reward during youngster year. "Jungle Jim" was a hard worker, with only occasional lapses, blessed with a mind which he didn't fail to use and seldom failed to speak.

The Class of 1944 was graduated in June 1943 due to World War II. The entirety of 2nd class (junior) year was removed from the curriculum.


From Find A Grave:

USNA Class of 1944, Lieutenant Griffith was as the pilot of a F9F-2 Pantherjet fighter with Fighter Squadron 24 aboard the USS BOXER (CV-21). On July 4, 1952, while serving as a photographic escort south of Wonsan, Korea, his aircraft was struck by anti-aircraft fire, crashed and exploded. He was listed as Missing in Action and was presumed dead on May 25, 1954.

For his leadership and valor, Lieutenant Griffith was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Purple Heart, the Combat Service Ribbon, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal and the Korean War Service Medal.

Distinguished Flying Cross

From Hall of Valor:

SYNOPSIS: Lieutenant Jack Walter Griffith (NSN: 0-283413), United States Navy, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (Posthumously) for extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight while serving with Fighter Squadron TWENTY-FOUR (VF-24), embarked in U.S.S. BOXER (CV-21), on 16 June 1952.

General Orders: All Hands (February 1953)
Action Date: June 16, 1952
Service: Navy
Rank: Lieutenant
Company: Fighter Squadron 24 (VF-24)
Division: U.S.S. Boxer (CV-21)


A different Find A Grave page has his date of birth as April 1.

Class Navigation

Class of 1944
Jack is one of 66 members of the Class of 1944 in Memorial Hall.
<< William Collett, III '44 Lindley Osborne '44 >>