Fletcher L. Brown, Jr.

NAME
Fletcher Locke Brown, Jr.
NICKNAME
SERVICE NUMBER
O-5613
UNIT
VMSB-232
Pilot
Executive Officer
HOME OF RECORD
Jacksonville Beach, FL
NEXT OF KIN
Wife, Mrs. Elynor Foster Brown
at the home of Dr. Fletcher L. Brown, Senior
DATE OF BIRTH
October 9, 1914
ENTERED SERVICE
July 28, 1937
DATE OF LOSS
September 6, 1942
REGION
Solomon Islands
CAMPAIGN / AREA
Gizo Harbor
CASUALTY TYPE
Missing In Action
Declared Dead September 7, 1943
CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS
Major Fletcher L. Brown, Jr. was a Marine dive bomber pilot. He served as the executive officer of VMSB-232, part of the Cactus Air Force, during the campaign for Guadalcanal and the Solomon Islands.

On 7 September 1942, Major Brown led a division of dive bombers in a strike on Japanese installations at Gizo Harbor. No aircraft were lost in the attack, but a heavy storm blew in on the return flight, causing the formation to scatter and downing two bombers. Major Brown’s aircraft (SBD-3 BuNo 03356) was last seen falling out of control towards the sea.

Neither Brown nor his gunner, Corporal Robert S. Russell, were seen again. Both men were declared dead on 7 September 1943.

INDIVIDUAL DECORATIONS
Navy Cross, Purple Heart
LAST KNOWN RANK
Major
STATUS OF REMAINS
Missing in action
MEMORIALS
Manila American Cemetery

Biography:
Coming soon. Contact the webmaster for more information about this Marine.

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Major Fletcher L. Brown, Jr. (MCSN: 0-5613), United States Marine Corps, for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession while serving as a Pilot in Marine Scout-Bombing Squadron TWO HUNDRED THIRTY-TWO (VMSB-232), Marine Air Group TWENTY-THREE (MAG-23), FIRST Marine Aircraft Wing, in action against enemy Japanese forces in Solomons Islands Area on 28 and 30 August 1942, and on 6 September 1942. On 28 August Major Brown led a section of scout bombers in a courageous attack which resulted in the destruction of three hostile destroyers north of Romos Island. On the night of 30 August, despite poor visibility, he located an enemy naval force attempting to land troops and supplies at Tasimboko. Pressing home vigorous attacks in the face of tremendous anti-aircraft fire, he scored several near misses, then dove his plane to a perilously low altitude and strafed the Japanese vessels until his ammunition was exhausted. His bold determination and fearless aggressiveness compelled the enemy to retire before an appreciable number of troops or amount of equipment could be disembarked. On 6 September, as leader of one division of a striking group, Major Brown raided hostile shore installations on Gizo Island, but failed to return from this mission. He gallantly gave his life for his country.


Articles & Records:


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