JOHN M. ENNIS, LCDR, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

John Ennis '35

Date of birth: January 23, 1913

Date of death: July 15, 1943

Age: 30

Lucky Bag

From the 1935 Lucky Bag:


Life & Loss

John was lost on July 15, 1943 when his plane crashed "thirteen miles from NAS, Hollister, California." (Information from September 1946 issue of Shipmate.)

John was born in Washington and entered the Naval Academy from Iowa. John is listed in the 1937 Register of Commissioned Officers as serving on USS Gilmer. He was promoted to LTjg June 6, 1938. In the April 1, 1941 Navy Directory he's listed as a LTjg under instruction at NAS Pensacola. He was promoted to Lieutenant January 1, 1942 and LCDR on May 1, 1943.

He is buried in Washington.

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 1936

Ensign, USS California

Others at this command: LT Norman Ives '20, ENS John McMahon '34, ENS Robert Brinker '34, ENS Royal Ingersoll, II '34, ENS Thomas Hine '34, ENS David Taylor, Jr. '35, ENS Dewitt Harrell '35, ENS Henry Gearing, III '35, ENS Mark Eslick, Jr. '35, and ENS Ralph Beacham '35.

Others at or embarked at this command: LCDR Francis Maile, Jr. '15 (Battle Force), LTjg Eugene Davis '27 (Observation Plane Squadron (VO) 4B), and ENS Frederick Purdy '33 (Battle Force).

July 1936

Ensign, USS Gilmer

January 1937

Ensign, USS Gilmer

April 1937

Ensign, communications officer, USS Gilmer

September 1937

Ensign, communications officer, USS Gilmer

January 1938

Ensign, communications officer, USS Gilmer

October 1939

Lieutenant (j.g.), Bombing Squadron (VB) 3, USS Saratoga

Others at this command: LCDR Richard Moss '24 and LT Harrington Drake '31.

Others at or embarked at USS Saratoga: LTjg John Spiers '32 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), LTjg George Nicol '34 (Scouting Squadron (VS) 3), ENS Raymond Vogel, Jr. '36 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), ENS William Mason, Jr. '37 (USS Saratoga), ENS John Smith '38 (USS Saratoga), ENS John Black '38 (USS Saratoga), ENS Keene Hammond '38 (USS Saratoga), ENS Claude Goodman, Jr. '39 (USS Saratoga), ENS Lenard Reichel '39 (USS Saratoga), and ENS Norman White '39 (USS Saratoga).

June 1940

Lieutenant (j.g.), Bombing Squadron (VB) 3, USS Saratoga

Others at this command: LCDR Richard Moss '24 and LT Harrington Drake '31.

Others at or embarked at USS Saratoga: LT William Hank '25 (USS Saratoga), LT William Sisko '31 (Scouting Squadron (VS) 3), LT John Spiers '32 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), LTjg George Nicol '34 (Scouting Squadron (VS) 3), LTjg Raymond Vogel, Jr. '36 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), ENS Edward O'Hare '37 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), ENS Keene Hammond '38 (USS Saratoga), and ENS Norman White '39 (USS Saratoga).

November 1940

Lieutenant (j.g.), Bombing Squadron (VB) 3, USS Saratoga

Others at this command: LTjg Francis Maher, Jr. '35, LTjg Jack Ferguson '35, and LTjg Howard Nester, Jr. '37.

Others at or embarked at USS Saratoga: LCDR William Hank '25 (USS Saratoga), LT William Sisko '31 (Scouting Squadron (VS) 3), LTjg Raymond Vogel, Jr. '36 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), LTjg Edward O'Hare '37 (Fighting Squadron (VF) 3), LTjg Harold Shrider '37 (Scouting Squadron (VS) 3), LTjg Macdonald Thompson '37 (Torpedo Squadron (VT) 3), LTjg Patrick Hart '37 (Torpedo Squadron (VT) 3), and ENS Norman White '39 (USS Saratoga).


Class of 1935

John is one of 56 members of the Class of 1935 on Virtual Memorial Hall.