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|7k||Jean Carter Witter, born in San Francisco, Cal. on 31 January 1921, matriculated at the University of California at Berkeley in September 1938. He was a member of the national fraternity Zeta Psi. He graduated in the spring of 1942 and was commissioned an ensign in the United States Naval Reserve on 13 May 1942 as a result of his completion of the NROTC program at the university. On 25 May, he reported to the Commandant, 12th Naval District for temporary duty while awaiting transportation to permanent duty in USS San Francisco (CA 38) then active in the Pacific. Once on board the heavy cruiser, Ens. Witter participated in the assault on Guadalcanal and Tulagi early in August. He was present when Wasp (CV 7) was torpedoed, and he fought in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. Ens. Witter was killed during the brutal night action off Cape Esperance on the night of 12 and 13 November 1942 as a result of one of the more than 45 shell hits suffered by his ship. He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart having been killed in action as a direct result of wounds received in action with the enemy of the United States. His other awards received posthumously included the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal; American Defense Service Medal; and the World War II Victory Medal.
USS Witter (DE 636) (1943-1945) was the first ship to be named in his honor.
(Photo from the University of California Berkeley yearbook; Blue and Gold, Class of 1942.)
|66k||January 1944: starboard bow view, underway on shakedown off the coast of California.
(National Archive #19-N-62176)
|61k||January 1944: starboard stern view, underway on shakedown off the coast of California.|
(National Archive #19-N-62177)
|68k||January 1944: port broadside view, underway on shakedown off the coast of California.|
(National Archive #19-N-62175)
|474k||08 March 1944: San Francisco, Cal. - A port broadside view of Witter taken in waters off the Bethlehem Steel Shipyard in San Francisco.
(U.S. Navy photos #CP-DE-636 19-N-62175 from the National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md.; courtesy of Chris Wright)
|247k||09 April 1945: Kerama Retto, Tokashiki, Japan - USS Rodman (DMS 21) and USS Witter
(DE 636) receiving repairs at Kerama Retto. Both had been hit by kamikaze attacks on 06 April off Okinawa.
(U.S. Naval Historical Center photo #NH 69111 from the Naval History and Heritage Command)
Port Angeles, Wash.
|64k||May 1945: docked off Okinawa - After being hit by "Kamikaze" on 6 April 1945.
(Philadelphia Navy Yard #1621-45)
|116k||May 1945: docked off Okinawa - Engineering Officer Bruno Naczkowski inspects damage after being hit by "Kamikaze" on 6 April 1945.|
|View the USS Witter (DE 636) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.|
|Witter's Commanding Officers
Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler
|Dates of Command||Commanding Officers|
|1.) 29 Dec. 1943 - 06 Jul. 1944||Cmdr. Alan C. Davis, USNR|
|2.) 06 Jul. 1944 - 29 Oct. 1945 -||Lt. George Herrman III, USNR|
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
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Page Last Updated: 19 June 2019