Thomas J. Gratzek

NAME
Thomas John Gratzek
NICKNAME
Tom
MCSN
O-7506
HOME OF RECORD
1104 Orange Street, St. Paul, MN
NEXT OF KIN
Parents, Dr. Thomas & Theresa Gratzek
DATE OF BIRTH
May 8, 1918
DATE OF ENLISTMENT
January 15, 1941
DATE OF LOSS
June 4, 1942
REGION
Central Pacific
CAMPAIGN / AREA
Midway
CASUALTY TYPE
MIA / Declared Dead
UNIT
VMSB-241
DUTY
Pilot
CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS
On 4 June 1942, Second Lieutenant Gratzek flew a Douglas Dauntless (SBD-2 #2119) in an attack on a Japanese carrier strike force in the battle of Midway. He and his gunner, Sgt. Charles W. Recke, were reported shot down by fighters from the carrier Hiryū. Neither Marine escaped their falling aircraft.
Lieutenant Gratzek’s remains were never found, and he was declared dead on 5 June 1943.
INDIVIDUAL DECORATIONS
Navy Cross, Purple Heart
LAST KNOWN RANK
Second Lieutenant
STATUS OF REMAINS
Not Recovered.
MEMORIALS
National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific

Biography:
Temporarily removed for editing and updating. Contact the webmaster for information on this Marine.


Articles and Records:


Excerpt from the war diary of VMSB-241, June 4 1942. 

Photo Gallery:

Lieutenant Gratzek with the pilots of VMSB-241 on Midway in May, 1942.

4 thoughts on “Thomas J. Gratzek

  1. Comment from Sam Newman
    28 May 2012

    My sons and I read these stories on Memorial day to know the names and stories of those that made the ultimate sacrifice for us.

  2. Comment from Marie Bibus
    5 June 2012

    He was my Dad’s friend and cousin, and we are thinking of him on this 70th anniversary of the Battle of Midway.

  3. Comment from Rob Ault
    3 September 2012

    This is the most information I have found about my Great Uncle. Thanks very much Geoff.
    Blue Skies,
    Rob Ault

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