From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

William Rogers '69

Date of birth: July 17, 1947

Date of death: September 27, 1973

Age: 26

Lucky Bag

From the 1969 Lucky Bag:

1969 Drum and Bugle Corps


From the March 1974 issue of Shipmate:

Capt. William Clifford Rogers, USMC, died on 27 September in Naples, Italy.

Capt. Rogers, born in Camp Lejeune, N.C. graduated from the Naval Academy in 1969. His first duty assignment after graduation was to the Marine Corps Basic Officer School in Quantico, Va. Upon completion of the Basic course he reported for Air Force flight training at Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, Tex., where he was awarded his Air Force Wings. He then reported to Cherry Point, N.C., for Marine Aviation transition training and then for further training in the F-4 Phantom. At the time of the aircraft accident which caused his death he was attached to VMFA 251, but was serving temporary duty with VMFA 333.

He is survived by his widow, Sandra, 469 Dogwood Ave., Laurel Bay, SC 29902; and his parents, LCol. and Mrs. Harry J. Rogers, Jr.

He was a a 1965 graduate of Hughesville HS, Pennsylvania.

He is buried in Picture Rocks Cemetery, Pennsylvania.

From Howard Bacharach '69 on January 4, 2019:

Following graduation, Bill reported to The Basic School in Quantico, Virginia with Class 2-70 in August 1969. Upon graduation from TBS in January 1970, Bill proceeded to Air Force flight school at Laughlin Air Force Base, Del Rio, Texas, one of the Marine Corps jet training options at that time. Upon graduation from flight school in 1971, Bill reported to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 251 (VMFA-251), Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina, for transition to the F-4 Phantom II. In 1973 Bill reported to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 333 (VMFA-333), Marine Corps Air Station, Beaufort, South Carolina. He died along with his Radar Intercept Officer (RIO) in a landing accident on 27 September 1974 while deployed to Naples, Italy.


From "The Legacy of the Class of 1969":

Following graduation and nearly two months of leave, Bill reported to The Basic School in Quantico, Virginia, where he was a member of Bravo Company, TBS 2-70.

Bill, desirous of jets, worked hard in the classroom, and with his native skills in the field from years of hunting, fishing and camping, achieved an admirable class standing that allowed him to choose the Air Force jet training program.

Weekends were spent in Manassas, Virginia at the drag strip, pushing his 1953 Hudson Hornet closer and closer to the speed of sound.

Finishing Quantico in January 1970, Bill reported to Laughlin Air Force Base, Del Rio, Texas.

By eye witness accounts, his weekends were spent shooting rabbits with nights drinking beer from the nearby border cantina. Sandee, his ever patient and supportive wife, could only sit back and smile.

After flight school, Bill reported to Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina. By this time Bill had swapped his Hudson Hornet for a drag-ready light blue 1970 Chevrolet Camaro.

Bill was killed along with his Radar Intercept Officer in an F-4 operational accident in Naples, Italy on September 27, 1974. Sandee was pregnant with their daughter Billee at the time.

Class of 1969

William is one of 17 members of the Class of 1969 on Virtual Memorial Hall.

The "category" links below lead to lists of related Honorees; use them to explore further the service and sacrifice of the alumni in Memorial Hall.