The memorial includes inscriptions on four sides.Richard Gunter Crommelin
Lieutenant Commander U.S. Navy
January 8, 1917 - July 14, 1945
Young fighter pilot on U.S.S. Yorktown CV-5. Shot
down two Japanese Zeros in Battle of Coral Sea
and another at Midway. One of very first to get
a kill in dog fights with Zeros - Awarded two Navy
He analyzed accurately two weaknesses of Zero
pilots - first, inability to make a high speed tight turn
second, their lack of training in deflection shooting.
This information with ideas of two ex-enlisted navy
pilots led to the formation tactic "The Enterprise
Scissors" which used teamwork to counter the superior
mechanical performance of the Zero. Japanese began
the war shooting down our Navy planes on a three to
one basis whereas later on we were shooting them down
eighteen to one by our pilots trained on "The
Enterprise Scissors". Richard as Squadron Commander of
VF-88 on new U.S.S. Yorktown-CV-10 went down at sea while
flying cover for heavy carrier bombers raiding industrial
plants on Hokkaido.
Exactly one month later Japan surrendered.
Commander. U.S. Navy
March 16, 1909 - March 27, 1945
Remembrance of him has been a continued inspiration to those privileged
to serve with him on
the Yorktown. They recognized his superb technical skill as a pilot: his capacity for leadership
which won the loyalty of all in his command. And
his personal charm which cemented the ties which
bound him to his men. But above all they pay tribute
to the qualities of his spirit. His devotion to duty was
an example to men of every rank: his courage was a
challenge that stimulated all to emulation.
These were the qualities that prompted him although
entitled by previous service and severe wounds to a role
of comparative safety. To gallantly insist on returning
to a post of danger and eventually give his life for the
cause in which he believed.
His friends of the Yorktown believe that these qualities have
enduring value. They particularly recognize their importance in this time of world crisis. They believe that in paying
tribute to the memory of Charles Crommelin they are
strengthening those essential human values which alone will
preserve our freedom. Commander Charles Crommelin went
down at sea while attacking Okinawa. - The above was presented
to the Crommelin family by officers and men of the U.S.S. Yorktown CV-10
Vice Admiral. U.S. Navy
August 11, 1904 - March 2, 1971
A star man academically in the class of 1925 U.S.
Naval Academy. Prior to World War II served in
battleships and destroyers
and as aide to Commander Battle Force. In the bloody Battle of Tarawa led his Destroyer Division 50 inside the uncharted lagoon and unloaded his ammunition through the muzzle on the Japanese defenses caught
by complete surprise. For his gallantry he was
awarded the Silver Star and later was awarded the
Bronze Star for action off Guam in 1944. After the war
he commanded the cruiser Des Moines and was later
Commander of the last active battleship division.
He retired to his Sugarberry Hill home in Wetumpka, AL.
Quentin Claiborne Crommelin
Captain U.S. Navy
September 26, 1918 - April 28, 1997
Graduated Annapolis as Ensign Feb. 7, 1941. Reported to U.S.S.
Saratoga CV-3 as anti-aircraft control for raid on Wake Island
and capture of Guadalcanal. Won his Wings in 1943 result of
excellent flight training record retained as instructor for
student pilots. Returned in early 1945 to western Pacific in U.S.S.
Antietam CV-36 as fighter pilot in Squadron 89 and elected up to
Squadron Commander until end of World War II. Decorations Legion
of Merit Air Medal and Campaign Stars after war was Commander
Air Group 12 and U.S.S. Lexington CV-16. Retired as Captain U.S.N. 1970
John Geraerdt Crommelin III
Rear Admiral U.S. Navy
October 2, 1902 - November 2, 1996
God Almighty has been good to me and thank
for giving me the privilege of serving
my country in times of great national peril. As Air
and Executive Officer of the greatest fighting ship
in all of the annals of recorded history, the U.S.S.
Enterprise-CV-6. "The Big E" a key factor in turning
the tide at Midway and winning the war at Guadalcanal.
A war correspondent on "The Big E" during several
crucial battles dedicated his historical book "Then
There Was One", to John Crommelin and his breed of
men. The classic history of U.S.S Enterprise, CV-6 states
"The Big E" under the blows of Yamamoto's dive bombers
around the Solomons aligned her own individuality with
the dominant aggressive personality of Crommelin. When
men think of Enterprise they most often think of John
Crommelin. The pilots' pilot.