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|45k||John Joseph Cofer was born on 30 November 1919 in Louisville, Ga., the son of Charles Randolph and Mary Jane (Tucker) Cofer. He enlisted in the Navy on 27 October 1941,
and reported for duty in USS Aaron Ward (DD 483) on 04 March 1942. Seaman First Class Cofer was killed in action on 13 November 1942 during the naval battle off Guadalcanal.
He was posthumously awarded the Silver Star for his gallant and intrepid conduct as spotter and rangefinder operator during the action.
His Silver Star Citation reads: "The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Seaman First Class John Joseph Cofer, United States Navy, for gallantry in action as range-finger operator and spotter on board the U.S.S. Aaron Ward (DD-483) during action against Japanese naval forces off Guadalcanal on the night of 30 November - 01 December 1942. He manned his station with exceptional coolness and skill and assisted the main battery in scoring numerous hits on the enemy with the result that one Japanese ship was sunk. Mortally wounded by shrapnel that riddles his body, his last words were, "I can range no longer." His gallant actions and dedicated devotion to duty, without regard for his own life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Naval Service".
USS Cofer (DE 208 / APD 62) (1944-1946) was the first ship to be named in his honor.
(U.S. Navy photo #NH 102398 from the Naval History and Heritage Command)
DE / FF / LCS Archive
|141k||THE COFERS OF THE COFER - Two brothers of the fighting Cofer family of Louisville, Ga. are going back to sea soon to put a very personal punch in their Uncle Sam's war
against the Axis. And they're going to sea on a brand new ship - a destroyer escort - which will bear the name of their brother, Seaman First Class John Joseph Cofer, who died heroically
in the battle against the Japs off Guadalcanal. Pictured on the forecastle of the USS Cofer are Lieutenant C. H. Cofer (left) and Radioman Third Class S. R. Cofer. Their mother, Mrs. Mary
Jane Cofer, of Louisville, will christen the ship in her son's name Wednesday at the Charleston Navy Yard.|
(U. S. Navy Photo: from the Atlanta Constitution, Monday, 17 January 1944, page 5)
|73k||undated wartime image
(Photo: © Ken Herrin 1945)
|481k||undated wartime image||Ed Zajkowski|
|186k||undated wartime image of Cofer's first wardroom.
(Photo donated to the Slater Museum by Alvin Chester, Cofer's first CO)
DE Historical Museum
USS Slater at Albany, N.Y.
|View the USS Cofer (DE 208 / APD 62) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.|
|Cofer's Commanding Officers
Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves
|Dates of Command||Commanding Officers|
|1.) 19 Jan. 1944 - 18 Dec. 1944||Lcdr. Alvin Paul Chester (Comm. CO) (NYMMA '35) (New York, N.Y.)|
|2.) 18 Dec. 1944 - 16 Dec. 1945||Lcdr. Herbert Calvin McClees, USNR|
|3.) 16 Dec. 1945 - 28 Jun. 1946||Lt. James Raymond Morrow (Decomm. CO)|
Contact information is compiled from various sources over a period of time and may, or may not, be correct. Every effort has
been made to list the newest contact. However, our entry is only as good as the latest information that's been sent to us. We list
only a contact for the ship if one has been sent to us. We do NOT have crew lists, rosters, or deck logs available. Please see the
Frequently Asked Questions section on NavSource's Main Page for that information.
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Page Last Updated: 08 March 2023