WENDELL G. SWITZER, JR., LTJG, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall
Wendell Switzer, Jr. '53

Date of birth: April 11, 1930

Date of death: September 1, 1955

Age: 25

Lucky Bag

From the 1953 Lucky Bag:

1953 Switzer LB.jpg

WENDELL GRAY SWITZER, JR.

Pensacola, Florida

Born the son of an Academy graduate, Windy was pre-destined to end up at the Academy. His secondary education was picked up all over, ending at Woodberry Forest. Being a loyal alumnus, he still looks forward to that Woodberry Oracle that comes twice a month. In spite of occasional differences of opinion with the Executive Department, Gray's love for dear old Bancroft was shown by the numerous weekends he spent within its walls. When he wasn't getting more than his share of rack-time, he managed to lend his talents to the LOG, Spanish Club, and Glee Club. An avid reader of the classics, he never missed an episode of Mike Hammer, his idol.

1953 Switzer LB.jpg

WENDELL GRAY SWITZER, JR.

Pensacola, Florida

Born the son of an Academy graduate, Windy was pre-destined to end up at the Academy. His secondary education was picked up all over, ending at Woodberry Forest. Being a loyal alumnus, he still looks forward to that Woodberry Oracle that comes twice a month. In spite of occasional differences of opinion with the Executive Department, Gray's love for dear old Bancroft was shown by the numerous weekends he spent within its walls. When he wasn't getting more than his share of rack-time, he managed to lend his talents to the LOG, Spanish Club, and Glee Club. An avid reader of the classics, he never missed an episode of Mike Hammer, his idol.

Loss

From Find A Grave:

Ensign W. G, Switzer, USN, a designated Naval Aviator, graduated U.S. Naval Academy, Class of 1953. Died in the crash of his AD Skyraider aircraft near Norfolk, VA. Was a member of Attack Squadron (VA) Forty-Two and was unmarried.

Other Information

From researcher Kathy Franz:

He graduated from Woodberry Forest School in Virginia in 1948. Fir Tree Board yearbook; Managing Editor, Oracle Board; German Club; Dramatic Club; Book Club; W. Club; Choir; Sub Precentor; Monitor Board; Varsity Football; J-V Basketball; Letterman, Football. Gifted with an aggressive yet taciturn will to get things done, Wendell has shown in three years at Woodberry Forest the attributes of a well-rounded student. After two seasons on the Blackshirts, Switz earned his letter at end this year, but he was not confined in his activities to athletics, for he held high positions on the Oracle Board and in the Choir. Wendell plans to don the Navy Gold and Blue in completing his scholastic career.

He was survived by his parents, his sister, and an older brother. The older brother, John Switzer '47, was later killed in a A4D accident at NAS Patuxent River in 1959. His father was a 1921 graduate who commanded two aircraft carriers in World War II and retired a Vice Admiral. His mother was the first woman named to the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation Board, in 1992.

Wendell is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Photographs

Related Articles

His older brother, John Switzer '47, was also lost in a Naval Aviation accident.


Class of 1953

Wendell is one of 62 members of the Class of 1953 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.