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First Name: Benjamin

Last Name: Custer

Birthplace: Atlanta, GA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Middle Name: Scott

Date of Birth: 05 March 1905

Date of Death: 11 March 2002

Rank or Rate: Rear Admiral

Years Served:
Benjamin Scott Custer

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)
•  Korean War (1950 - 1953)


Benjamin Scott Custer
Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy

Benjamin Scott Custer was born on 5 March 1905 in Atlanta, GA.

Custer graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1926. During World War II, he was a Naval Aviator and served on the Battleship USS Texas, Cruiser USS Houston, Aircraft Carrier USS Lexington, Battleship USS California and Escort Carrier USS Croatan. He won two combat decorations for action in the North Atlantic and at Okinawa.

While Executive Officer of the Croatan, it was credited with destroying nine submarines and capturing the crew of one of them. In October of 1945, he was assigned as Commanding Officer of the Destroyer USS Shields and remained as Commander until 14 June 1946. He later served as Chief Flight Instructor at Pensacola, FL, Naval Air Station and as Director of Flight Safety and Accident Research in Washington, DC, as well as Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station, Floyd Bennett Field. While at Floyd Bennett Field, he supervised the training of thirty-two naval reserve squadrons during the Korean War.

While in Washington, he acquired a doctorate in American history from Georgetown University. Later he became the Director of Air Safety in the U.S. Navy's Bureau of Aeronautics as well as U.S. Naval Attaché to Canada. During a tour as naval attaché in Ottawa, Custer made a forced landing in Northern Saskatchewan. He and the other four in his crew were rescued after a 14-day combined U.S. and Canadian search. Custer's last active duty assignment was as Commandant of the Naval ROTC at Princeton University and he retired in 1957.

In Retirement

Custer served as Assistant to the President of Columbia University.

Death and Burial

Rear Admiral Benjamin Scott Custer died on 11 March 2002 in Rye, NY. He is buried at the U.S. Naval Academy Cemetery in Annapolis, MD.

Honoree ID: 2403   Created by: MHOH




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