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Chief Gunners Mate Corregidor Navy Bronze Star Medal


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I have had this Bronze Star in my collection for some time, I just recently started researching the recipient. Here is whats I have put together before receiving his records from the archives.

 

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United States Navy Captain Carl Anian Carlson Jr. (service #81852) was born April 7th 1910 in Youngstown, Ohio.

Carlson enlisted in the Navy in deep sea diving Aug. 18th 1938 and served on the ill fated Cruiser U.S.S. Indianapolis, he rose quickly through the ranks to Chief Gunners Mate.

CGM Carlson was serving on the Minesweeper/Submarine Tender U.S.S. Pigeon with Submarine Squadron 20, in the Philippines Islands when the Japanese invaded. The Pigeon & its crew fought valiantly for days at the island fortress of Corregidor while being under constant enemy attack on shore during the day and onboard the Pigeon at night. The Gunners on the Pigeon scored 4 aerial victories against Japanese planes in the Corregidor channel before she was hit & sunk by a Japanese dive bomber on May 4th 1942. The bomb ripped through her starboard quarter & she sank in eight minutes, in less than 50ft of water. The Pigeon was the first U.S. Navy ship to be awarded the Presidential Unit Citation, which she was awarded twice.

Chief Gunner Carlson & the crew of the Pigeon remained on shore fighting as members of the Corregidor Beach Defense May 5th & 6th 1942. Most of the crew was captured by Japanese forces, which in many cases was a fate worse than death. Approximately 16 crew members of the Pigeon were killed in action during the fighting on Corregidor, or Japanese Prisoner of War camps.

The Chief Gunner survived & was detained as a Prisoner of War at Shinjuku Tokyo Bay Area, 35-140 P.O.W. camp for 40 months. He was awarded this Bronze Star w/ Combat V for actions on Corregidor & the Purple Heart Medal for being wounded 4 times in the Philippines in 1942. CGM Carlson was liberated and returned to the United States. He was commissioned as a Lieutenant J.G. In 1946 and continued his career in the navy serving on the Essex Class Aircraft Carrier U.S.S. Valley Forge & at the Naval Ammunition Depot, Mare Island, CA until he Retired in Oct. 1957 as a Captain.

Mr. Carlson served as an active member & President of the Retired Officers Association on Mare Island. He was also a longtime member of the Vallejo Elks Lodge #559.

United States Navy Captain Carl Anian Carlson Jr. passed away March 29th 2000 in Fairfield, CA at 89 years old. His services were held at 10 a.m. Thursday at Vaca Hills Chapel. He is buried at the Arroyo Grande Cemetery, Arroyo Grande, San Luis Obispo County, California.

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Great research!! Fantastic addition!

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Always looking for quality WWI and WWII USMC items. Particularly 4th Marine Brigade related items, medals, uniforms helmets ephemera, Also WWII USMC items including uniforms, medals, etc. to combat veterans especially Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Iwo Jima. Let me know what you have. Semper Fi


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Nice Find! I love it when there reasesrch out well.

 

Kurt

!!!! WANTED !!!!

WWII Prisoner of War items : Medals, Mail, Diaries, Photos, Documents, Scrapbooks + More

WWII Naval Aviation Groupings : Medals, Documents, Scrapbooks, Photos, Flight Logs, Flight Jackets + More

 


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  • 1 month later...

That's cool! I have a chiefs jacket (MDV, 1st class diver at the time)that I believe may have belonged to George Mcculough who is on your survivors list. Many of the divers were forced by the Japanese to bring up the silver that was dumped in the bay before they were sent to internment in Japan. There's a good book about it, the title escapes me at the moment, but I think it was called something like " The Silver secret of Caballo bay" that book may provide more insights on your guy.

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That's cool! I have a chiefs jacket (MDV, 1st class diver at the time)that I believe may have belonged to George Mcculough who is on your survivors list. Many of the divers were forced by the Japanese to bring up the silver that was dumped in the bay before they were sent to internment in Japan. There's a good book about it, the title escapes me at the moment, but I think it was called something like " The Silver secret of Caballo bay" that book may provide more insights on your guy.

 

 

I remember that uniform from eBay I think; the rate was not the right one for that McCullough as I recall.

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*

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I think it might still be him, it was a converted wwii jacket to 6 button from 8. I believe it has a recruiters lozenge under the crow and a master diver speciality on the right sleeve. Under the crow on the right sleeve you can see where there used to be a diver speciality. I think that may have been a first class badge. Its speculation but I do know he became a master diver after he got back and I believe he went on to set some depth records. It just has the last name inside and spelled correctly unlike I just did, lol. I can't find any other Mcculough that was a master diver during that time period just post war. If I'm wrong and you or anyone has info on who it might be I'd be interested in any info. I would think maybe they gave him recruiting duty after getting back from being a POW. They didn't have a lot of master divers just post war.

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That's cool! I have a chiefs jacket (MDV, 1st class diver at the time)that I believe may have belonged to George Mcculough who is on your survivors list. Many of the divers were forced by the Japanese to bring up the silver that was dumped in the bay before they were sent to internment in Japan. There's a good book about it, the title escapes me at the moment, but I think it was called something like " The Silver secret of Caballo bay" that book may provide more insights on your guy.

Thanks!

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That's cool! I have a chiefs jacket (MDV, 1st class diver at the time)that I believe may have belonged to George Mcculough who is on your survivors list. Many of the divers were forced by the Japanese to bring up the silver that was dumped in the bay before they were sent to internment in Japan. There's a good book about it, the title escapes me at the moment, but I think it was called something like " The Silver secret of Caballo bay" that book may provide more insights on your guy.

Here are the names of the 6 divers that retrieved the silver from the bay.

 

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