|Born||26 Jan 1887|
|Died||3 Feb 1947|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseMarc Andrew Mitscher was born in Hillsboro, Wisconsin, United States, but moved to Washington, DC when he was fairly young. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland in 1910. In the next few years he served aboard cruisers, gunboats, destroyers, as well as holding on-shore posts. In Sep 1915 he was assigned to aviation training aboard the battleship North Carolina and officially became an aviator in Jun 1916 and transferred to Pensacola, Florida. In May 1919, he participated in the trans-Atlantic flight attempt; his plane, NC-3, landed in heavy fog near the Azores, thus failing to achieve the flight like NC-4 had. Nevertheless, he received the Navy Cross for his attempt. In the 1920s, he served at various posts, including seeing through that the carrier Saratoga received proper funding. He also served as officer aboard the carriers Langley and Saratoga, commanded the seaplane tender Wright, and led the Patrol Wing 1 of the Navy. Immediately before United States entered WW2, he served as the Assistant Chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics.
ww2dbaseIn Oct 1941 Mitscher became the commanding officer of USS Hornet. In Apr 1942, about five months after the United States entered WW2, carrier Hornet was charged with launching James Doolittle's raiders against Tokyo and other targets. Two months later, Hornet participated in the Battle of Midway, though her pilots' battle record for this event was less than desired. He was taken away from the carrier on 30 Jun 1942, instead assigned to lead Patrol Wing 2 and other naval air units in the South Pacific as a rear admiral. In this role, he commanded naval air units during the Guadalcanal and Solomons campaigns. After commanding Carrier Division 3 during the Marshalls campaign, Mitscher was promoted vice admiral on 21 Mar 1944 and commanded the fast carriers of Task Force 58 (also known as TF 38). With the crushing air power in hand, he was responsible for strikes across remaining Japanese defenses all across the Pacific, including attack on the Japanese home islands near the end of the war. The war ended with Mitscher in the role of Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Air. He received two Gold Stars to his Navy Cross and the Distinguished Service Medal with two Gold Stars.
ww2dbaseAfter the war, he first became the commander of the 8th Fleet then served as the Commander-in-Chief of United States Atlantic Fleet. He passed away from a heart attack in Feb 1947 at Norfolk, Virginia, United States while still in uniform. Arleigh Burke who served under Mitscher during WW2 recalled:
ww2dbaseSources: Naval Historical Center, Wikipedia.
Last Major Revision: Jan 2006
Marc Mitscher Timeline
|26 Jan 1887||Marc Mitscher was born.|
|25 Jul 1943||US Army Major General Nathan Twining replaced US Navy Rear Admiral Marc Mitscher as Commander, Aircraft, Solomons.|
|6 Jan 1944||The Fast Carrier Task Force 50 was renumbered TF 58 and put under the command of Rear Admiral Marc A. Mitscher, one of the US Navy's most skilled aviators. With new carriers coming forward in such numbers it was now possible to provide the Task Force with six fleet carriers and six light fleet carriers with over 700 aircraft. Screened by six battleships and six cruisers it was the most powerful fleet in the world.|
|3 Feb 1947||Marc Mitscher passed away.|
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Lt. Gen. Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller, at Guadalcanal