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First Name: Lloyd

Last Name: Thomas

Birthplace: Nelsonville, Athens, OH, US

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Home of Record: OH

Date of Birth: 10 March 1912

Date of Death: 05 June 1943 (Presumed)

MIA Date: 04 June 1942

Rank or Rate: Lieutenant (junior grade)

Years Served: 1938-1943

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Lloyd Thomas

Lieutenant Junior Grade, United States Navy

Navy Cross

Lloyd was a son of Perry Rice Thomas and Donna M Fisher who married 30 April 1904 in Hocking County, OH. Lloyd's five siblings were Catherine, George Arthur, Analee R., Marjorie Lorella, and Sarah. Perry and his son George Arthur were coal miners. George was killed in a mine explosion on 5 Nov 1930. Daughter Marjorie enlisted in the US Army in 1945 and was a 1Lt.

Lloyd graduated from Ohio University in Athens, OH in June 1934 with a Bachelor of Science degree. He enlisted in the US Naval Reserve pilot training program (V-5) in early 1938. After he completed elimination flight training he was ordered home to await further orders. He was ordered to active duty in late Sep 1938 and was to proceed to the Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, FL where he was discharged to accept an appointment as an aviation cadet on 4 Oct 1938. He began his training at NAS Pensacola, FL. After almost a year's intensive flight training under instruction, Thomas received his naval aviator designation about Sept 1939. The following month he was commissioned an Ensign, USNR, AV(N), on 26 Oct 1939 with a date of rank of 15 Oct 1939.

According to the Pensacola (FL) News Journal, Wings Over Pensacola section of 05 Nov 1939, Aviation Cadet Lloyd Thomas received his designation as a naval aviator, was commissioned an ensign in the Naval Reserve Force, and was transferred to Torpedo Squadron Six (VT-6) embarked on board the aircraft carrier, U.S.S. Enterprise. He reported for duty to VT-6 on 13 Dec 1939. He was accepted for transfer from the Naval Reserve Force to the Regular Navy (USN) on 4 April 1941. Later that year on 01 Nov 1941, he was promoted to Lieutenant, junior grade (Ltjg).

Lloyd Thomas married Mildred Ida Macklin on 01 Mar 1941 in Yuma, AZ. Mildred was a navy nurse working at the Naval Hospital in San Diego. She was the daughter of Thomas Stewart and Ada (McMahon) Macklin. Thomas Macklin was a naval officer who served during the Spanish-American War, Philippine Insurrection, WWI and WWII. He held a master ship's pilot license for areas on the East and West Coast of the United States. He commanded no fewer than four US Navy vessels. He died in 1976 at age 98.

Then Chief Boatswain Macklin married Adeline Marie "Ada" McMahon in the American Consulate, Santigo de, Cuba on 08 Sep 1914. Ada gave birth to Mildred in the US Naval Station, Guantanamo, Bay, Cuba on 12 Jun 1915. Twelve days later Ada died from a pulmonary embolism. Her remains were returned to her family in New York, NY on board the S.S. Saramacca that departed Cuba on 2 July and arrived in the port of New York on 07 July 1915. Chief Macklin and his infant daughter escorted her mother's remains home. Mildred was raised in New York until she was a young adult by her paternal grandmother, Ida Stewart Macklin. Mildred died on 18 Nov 1994 in California having never remarried.

The Enterprise was commissioned on 12 May 1938. Torpedo Squadron Six (VT-6) was commissioned on 01 July 1938. During 1938-1939, Enterprise and her embarked squadrons conducted shake down cruises and workup exercises at various times in the Atlantic and Caribbean operating areas. While the ship was inport the squadrons were temporarily based ashore at their assigned airfields. In Sep 1939, Enterprise became part of the Hawaiian Detachment of the U.S. Fleet whose homeport was Pearl Harbor. In Jan 1940 Enterprise was engaged in exercises in Hawaiian waters. In early Feb, she steamed for Puget Sound Navy Shipyard for an overhaul after making a brief port call in San Diego. In late May, Enterprise, her overhaul completed, returned to San Diego for about a month. She returned to Pearl Harbor on 2 July 1940. Enterprise conducted exercises from August to early Nov in the Hawaiian area. Then on 09 Nov she steamed to San Diego until 2 Dec when she got underway for the Puget Sound Navy Shipyard in Bremerton, WA.

Enterprise returned to Pearl Harbor on 21 Jan 1941. During 1941 Enterprise made 13 round trips between Hawaii and San Diego from April - Nov conducting exercise cycles and squadron work-ups. During those months she also shuttled Army Air Force P-39s and P-40s, as well as, Navy aircraft from US West Coast ports to Pearl Harbor and beyond. On 28 Nov 1941, Enterprise, now operating in a war-time steaming condition, left San Diego with a cargo of Marine Fighting Squadron 211 (VMF-211) aircraft and pilots destined for Wake Island. The Marine pilots and their planes flew from Enterprise to Wake Island on 02 Dec 1941. Enterprise was scheduled to arrive back in Pearl Harbor on 06 Dec, but was delayed due to inclement weather. Fortunately, she wasn't inport on the morning of 07 Dec, but arrived later that evening.

In the first five months of 1942, Enterprise and her Air Group participated in the attack on Gilbert and Marshall Islands on 01 Feb 1942. During this action VT-6 attacked enemy Japanese forces on Kwajalein. Enterprise also participated in the Wake Island raid 24 Feb 1942. On 4 March, Enterprise’s Air Group attacked enemy installations on the Marcus Islands and on 18 April, she supported the Doolittle raid. In early May, Enterprise and the aircraft carrier USS Hornet (CV-8) were dispatched to the South Pacific to assist the aircraft carriers USS Lexington (CV-2) and USS Yorktown (CV-5) who were engaged in the battle of the Coral Sea. However, before the ships arrived on-scene the battle of the Coral Sea was over. After participating in additional operations in the Central Pacific, Enterprise returned to Pearl Harbor on 26 May and began intensive preparations to meet an expected Japanese thrust at Midway Island. Enterprise got underway from Pearl Harbor on 28 May 1942, and with USS Hornet (CV-8), steamed toward a point Northeast of Midway called "Point Luck." USS Yorktown (CV-5) followed a short time later.


Early on the morning of 4 Jun 1942, pilot Ltjg Lloyd Thomas and his radioman-gunner Aviation Radioman Second Class Harold Francis Littlefield launched in their torpedo plane from Enterprise along with other members of VT-6 and Air Group Six to attack the Japanese striking force that was near Midway. Separated from their covering fighter protection, VT-6 comprised of 14 torpedo planes pressed their attack even though overwhelmed by superior numbers of Japanese fighter aircraft. One by one, the planes of VT-6 were shot down. Of the 14 planes only four returned from their mission. Ltjg Thomas and Petty Officer Littlefield did not return. According to the USS Enterprise after action report for the Battle of Midway dated 8 Jun 1942 for VT-6, Ltjg L. Thomas, USN and ARM2 H.F. Littlefield, USN were listed among the personnel losses. Their remains were unrecoverable. They were considered "missing in action" on 04 Jun 1942. On 05 Jun 1943 they were officially "presumed dead."

Of the 14 Torpedo Bombers from VT-6 that attacked the Japanese Striking Force on 4 Jan 1942 only four returned to Enterprise. Machinist Albert Walter Winchell (NAP), and his gunner, Aviation Radioman 3rd Class Douglas M. Cossitt, made a water landing before sighting Enterprise. They survived 17 days on the open seas in a rubber raft before being rescued by a Patrol Squadron 24 PBY on 21 Jun 1942, some 360 miles northward of Midway. In all, five VT-6 crews survived the morning attack.

Ltjg Thomas was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross, the Purple Heart, the Presidential Unit Citation. American Defense Service Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one bronze battle star, and the World War II Victory Medal.


Those pilots and crew of VT-6 that were killed in action on 04 June 1942 were:

1) Lcdr Eugene Elbert Lindsey (CO VT-6) and his gunner, ARMC Charles Tilden Grenat

2) Lt Arthur Vincent Ely (VT-6 XO) and his gunner, RM3Arthur Richard Lindgren

3) Lt Paul James Riley and his gunner, ARM2 Edwin John Mushinski

4) Ltjg John Thomas Eversole and his gunner, RM2 John Udell Lane

5) Ltjg Randolph Mitchell Holder and his gunner, ARM3 Gregory Joseph Durawa

6) Ltjg Severin Louis Rombach and his gunner, ARM2 Wilburn Forrest Glenn

7) Ltjg Lloyd Thomas and his gunner, ARM2 Harold Francis Littlefield

8) Ensign John Wiley Brock and his gunner, ARM3 John Melville Blundell

9) Ensign Flourenoy Glenn Hodges and his gunner, RM2 John Hail Bates


Combat Action Ribbon (CR) note:

None of the Navy/Marine flight crews in the Battle of Midway were eligible for or were awarded the Combat Action Ribbon (CR). See Navy and Marine Corps Awards Manual (SECNAVINST M-1650.1 of 16 Aug 2019, Appendix 2C.1.c (3) Amplifying Guidance). It reads in part, “The CR will not be awarded in connection with aerial flight, . . . “ The CR was established in 1969 and made retroactive to 07 Dec 1941.


The Marion Star, (Marion, OH) Wednesday, 11 Nov 1942 p. 7

Ohio Naval Officers Given Navy Cross - Among Nine Listed as Missing at Midway

Washington, Nov. 11 -- Nine naval aviation officers, including Lieutenant (JG) Lloyd Thomas, 30, of Nelsonville, O., and Ensign Severin Louis Rombach, 27, of Cleveland; who fought in the battle of Midway and are listed as missing have been awarded the navy cross for extraordinary heroism. The navy announced today that each decoration was accompanied by the same citation praising each officer "for extraordinary heroism . . . [the citation is repeated as below].” Lieutenant Thomas' mother, Mrs Donna M. Thomas, lives at Chuncey, O, and his wife, Mrs. Mildred Macklin Thomas, lives at Oahu avenue, Honolulu. Ensign Rombach is the son of Mrs. C.F.Rombach of Cleveland. His wife, Mrs. Leah Greadwell (sic) Rombach also lives in Cleveland.


Navy Cross Citation reads:

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Lieutenant, Junior Grade Lloyd Thomas, United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism in operations against the enemy while serving as Pilot of a carrier-based Navy Torpedo Plane of Torpedo Squadron SIX, attached to the U.S.S. ENTERPRISE, during the "Air Battle of Midway," against enemy Japanese forces on 4 June 1942. Participating in a vigorous and intensive assault against the Japanese invasion fleet, Lieutenant, Junior Grade, Thomas pressed home his attack with relentless determination in the face of a terrific barrage of anti-aircraft fire. The unprecedented conditions under which his squadron launched its offensive were so exceptional that it is highly improbably the occasion may ever recur where other pilots of the service will be called upon to demonstrate an equal degree of gallantry and fortitude. His extreme disregard of personal safety contributed materially to the success of our forces and his loyal conduct was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

General Orders: Bureau of Naval Personnel Information Bulletin No. 309 (December 1942)


The Presidential Unit Citation awarded to the crew of USS Enterprise and her embarked Air Wing Six. The citation reads: For consistently outstanding performance and distinguished achievement during repeated action against enemy Japanese forces in the Pacific war area, 7 December 1941, to 15 November 1942. Participating in nearly every major carrier engagement in the first year of the war, the Enterprise and her air group, exclusive of far-flung destruction of hostile shore installations throughout the battle area, did sink or damage on her own a total of 35 Japanese vessels and shot down a total of 185 Japanese aircraft. Her aggressive spirit and superb combat efficiency are fitting tribute to the officers and men who so gallantly established her as an ahead bulwark in the defense of the American nation.

Actions of the Enterprise mentioned in the citation include the Gilbert and Marshalls of 01 Feb 1942; Wake Island raid, 24 Feb 1942; Marcus Island raid, 04 Mar 1942; Battle of Midway, 4-6 Jun 1942; Occupation of Guadalcanal, 7-8 Aug 1942; Battle of Stewart Islands, 24 Aug 1942; Battle of Santa Cruz Islands, 26 Oct 1942; and Battle of Solomon Islands, 14-15 Nov 1942.


The first USS Lloyd Thomas (DE-312), a destroyer escort named in his honor was cancelled in 1944 prior to launching.

The second USS Lloyd Thomas (DE-374) a destroyer escort was cancelled in 1944 prior to construction.

The third USS Lloyd Thomas (DD/DDE-764) named in his honor was a Gearing-class destroyer in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War and the Vietnam War. USS Lloyd Thomas (DD-764) was laid down by Bethlehem Steel Corporation, Shipbuilding Division, San Francisco, California, 26 March 1944; launched 5 October 1945; sponsored by Mrs. Lloyd Thomas, widow of Lt(jg.) Thomas; and was commissioned 21 March 1947. She was decommissioned in 1973.


The Presidential commemoration presented to the family of Ltjg Thomas reads: In grateful memory of Lloyd Thomas, who died in the service of his country, SEA, Pacific Area, ATTACHED U.S.S. ENTERPRISE, 5 JUNE 1943 (Presumed). He stands in the unbroken line of patriots who have dared to die that freedom might live and grow and increase its blessings. Freedom lives, and through it, he lives -- in a way that humbles the undertakings of most men.

(Signed) Franklin D. Roosevelt,

President of the United States


Task Force 16 Citation Recognizing its contribution to the Doolittle Raid, 18 April 1942

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Second World War, it is appropriate that we take time to reflect on the unique and daring accomplishments achieved early in the war by Task Force 16. Sailing westward under sealed orders in April 1942, only four months after the devastating raid on Pearl Harbor, Task Force 16, carrying sixteen Army B-25 bombers, proceeded into history. Facing adverse weather and under constant threat of discovery before bombers could be launched to strike the Japanese homeland, the crews of the ships and LTC Doolittle's bombers persevered. On 18 April 1942 at 14:45, perseverance produced success as radio broadcasts from Japan confirmed the success of the raids. These raids were an enormous boost to the morale of the American people in those early and dark days of the war and a harbinger of the future for the Japanese High Command that had so foolishly awakened "The Sleeping Giant." These exploits, which so inspired the service men and women and the nation live on today and are remembered when the necessity of success against all odds is required.

(Signed) John H.Dalton

Secretary of the Navy

15 May 1995


[Bio compiled by GML470]

Honoree ID: 103179   Created by: MHOH




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