STANTON F. KALK, LTJG, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Stanton Kalk '16

Date of birth: October 14, 1894

Date of death: December 6, 1917

Age: 23

Lucky Bag

From the 1916 Lucky Bag:


Loss

Painting by F. Luis Mora, depicting Lt(JG) Kalk assisting survivors of USS Jacob Jones (Destroyer # 61) after she was sunk by the German submarine U-53 off the Scilly Isles on 6 December 1917. A plaque accompanying this painting read: The Jacob Jones was sunk by an enemy torpedo between Brest and Queenstown. Lieutenant (jg) S.F. Kalk rendered conspicuous and gallant services after the ship sank by helping men from one raft to another so as to equalize the weight on the rafts. He died of exposure and exhaustion in order to save others. Lieutenant (jg) Kalk was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal posthumously. U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Stanton was lost when USS Jacob Jones (Destroyer No. 61) was torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine between Brest, France, and Ireland. He was the officer of the deck, and "though stunned by the explosion and weakened by his action after the ship went down, Kalk swam from one raft to another in an attempt to equalize weight on them. Displaying "extraordinary heroism," he disregarded his own condition while endeavoring to save the lives of his men. Game to the last, Kalk overtaxed his own strength; he died from exposure and exhaustion."

His name is listed at the Brookwood American Military Cemetery in England and on a memorial marker in Arlington National Cemetery.

Career

Stanton began his career aboard the battleship USS Florida; he reported to Jacob Jones in September 1917.

Navy Distinguished Service Medal

From Hall of Valor:

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Distinguished Service Medal (Posthumously) to Lieutenant Stanton Frederick Kalk, United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession on the occasion of the destruction of the U.S.S. JACOB JONES by a submarine, on 6 December 1917. Lieutenant Kalk, as Officer of the Deck, when the submarine was sighted, took prompt and correct measures in maneuvering to avoid the torpedo, and later showed extraordinary heroism in sacrificing himself by giving up his place on a life raft to make room for others, as a result of which splendid self-sacrifice, he lost his life.

General Orders: Authority: Navy Book of Distinguished Service (Stringer)
Service: Navy
Division: U.S.S. Jacob Jones
Rank: Lieutenant

Namesake

USS Kalk (DD 170) and USS Kalk (DD 611) were named for Stanton; the ships were both sponsored by his mother.

Related Articles

Norman Scott '11 was the executive officer of Jacob Jones when she was torpedoed.


Class of 1916

Stanton is one of 16 members of the Class of 1916 in Memorial Hall.