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|10k||Jack Winton Wilke was born in Covina, Calif. on 13 June 1919, and enlisted in the Naval Reserve 13 January 1941. After undergoing flight training, he was commissioned
Ensign on 01 November 1941. Wilke was first assigned to a patrol squadron, but later reported to Torpedo Squadron 8 on board Hornet in the Pacific. In the pivotal Battle of Midway, 04
and 05 June 1942, he joined his squadron in attacking the Japanese invasion force without air cover, and "pressed home his attack in the face of withering fire from enemy Japanese fighters
and antiaircraft batteries." All the planes and all the flyers but one, Ens. George H. Gay, of this gallant squadron were lost; but their attack had diverted Japanese fighters from dive
bombing attacks which might have prevented the eventual U.S. Navy victory. Ens. Wilke received the Navy Cross posthumously for his heroism.
USS Jack W. Wilke (DE 800) (1944-1960) was the first ship to be named in his honor.
(Photo from the web site Find A Grave)
|60k||circa 1950: Key West, Fla. - USS Jack W. Wilke (DE 800) at the pier in Key West.
(Photo #MM00008483x from the Key West Art and Historical Society Collection, courtesy of the Florida Keys Public Libraries)
England, United Kingdom
|71k||20 June 1952: as trials ship for the Operational Development Force|
|269k||1955: Key West, Fla. - USS Jack W. Wilke (DE 800) moored to a pier at the Key West Naval Station in Florida. During the 1950's, the ship operated as a
trials ship for the Operational Development Force.
(U.S. Naval Historical Center photo #L45-142.04.02 from the Naval History and Heritage Command)
Port Angeles, Wash.
|43k||February 1960: Key West, Florida||Fred Weiss|
|104k||undated post-war image||Nick Tiberio|
|136k||undated post-war image||Bob Hurst|
England, United Kingdom
|171k||undated post-war image||Tim Rizzuto|
USS Slater Memorial
|Jack W. Wilke History|
|View the USS Jack W. Wilke (DE 800) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.|
Contact information is compiled from various sources over a period of time and may, or may not, be correct. Every effort has
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Page Last Updated: 28 January 2019