Remembering Local Men Killed at Pearl Harbor

This year marks the 81st anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.  It is estimated there are fewer than 1200 Pearl Harbor survivors alive.  The attack killed 2,403 service members and wounded 1,178 more. Six U.S. ships were sunk. Additionally, 169 U.S. Navy and Army Air Corps planes were destroyed. Civilians were also in danger. There were 34 men from St. Louis, St. Louis County and St. Charles County killed in action.  Nineteen of them were on the USS Arizona.  There were two from St. Charles County killed in action.  In all approximately 64 men were killed from Missouri.

St. Charles County Men Killed in Action

Noble Burnice Harris was born on July 9-JUL 1918. St Charles is listed as his hometown.  Noble enlisted 9-JAN 1940 in the Navy.  Noble was a Coxswain.  Noble was officially assigned to the USS Arizona (BB-39) beginning 26-MAR 1940.  The USS Arizona was a Pennsylvania Class Battleship built for the US Navy in the 1910’s and launched in 1915.  Noble Burnice Harris was killed on the Arizona during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor 7-DEC 1941.  Noble, along with 1101 of his shipmates remain entombed on the USS Arizona today.  Noble had a cousin who also died on the U.S.S. Arizona.  Fireman First Class James W. Harris was aboard the Arizona on the day of the Pearl Harbor attack.  James William Harris was born on 21-NOV 1921. His remains have not been recovered.

Joseph Gillespie Smartt was born on 19-MAR 1917 in Texas.  Joseph Smartt was in the US Navy Reserve.  Ensign Smartt completed his flight training at NRAB (Naval Reserve Aviation Base), in St. Charles Missouri just outside of St. Louis. Joseph Gillespie Smartt was killed in action on 7-DEC 1941 at Pearl Harbor.  He was stationed at Naval Station Ford Island, assigned to Patrol Squadron 11 Kaneohe Naval Air Station.  Ensign Joseph Gillespie Smartt was among those cited by CinCPacFlt, “For prompt and efficient action and utter disregard of personal danger in the effort to repel the attack on the Naval Air Station.”  It is likely Smartt was one of the first casualties at Pearl Harbor and World War II.  The airport facility in St. Charles MO. was later renamed Smartt Field in honor of Ensign Joseph Smartt.

Men from St. Louis Area Killed in Action at Pearl Harbor

  1. Atchison, John Calvin. Marine, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  2. Bazetti, Michael Louis. Navy, USS California, Louis
  3. Belt, Everett Ray Jr. Marine, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  4. Boemer, Paul Louis Navy. USS Oklahoma St. Louis
  5. Bosley, Kenneth Leroy. Navy, Hickham Field, St. Louis
  6. Boswell, Frank G. Army, Hickham Field, St. Louis
  7. Brune, James William. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  8. Cannon, George Ham. Marine, Shore Battery, Webster Groves
  9. Funk, Frank Francis. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  10. Grant, Lawrence Everett. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  11. George, Themistocles George. Navy, USS Oklahoma, St. Louis
  12. HARDIN, Charles Eugene. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  13. Hoard, Herbert John. Navy, USS Oklahoma, Desoto
  14. Harrington, Keith Homer. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  15. Harris, Noble Burnice, Navy, USS Arizona, St. Charles
  16. Hyde, William Hughes. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  17. Kaiser, Robert Oscar. Navy, USS Arizona, University City
  18. Kirkchoff, Wilbur Albert. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  19. Kirkpatrick, Thomas Larcy. Navy, USS Arizona, Webster Groves
  20. Manges, Howard Ellis. Navy, USS California, St. Louis
  21. Marshall, John Andrew. Navy, USS Downes, Overland
  22. McAbee, William E. Army, Hickham Field, St. Louis
  23. Monroe, Donald. Navy, USS Arizona, Webster Groves
  24. Peckham, Howard William. Navy, USS Arizona, Wellston
  25. Pedrotti, Francis James. Marine, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  26. Pummill, Nolan Eugene. Navy, USS Downes, Eureka
  27. Sanford, Thomas Steger. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  28. Smartt, Joseph Gillespie. Navy, Kaneohe Bay, St. Charles
  29. Smith, Earl Jr. Navy, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  30. Stout, Robert Thomas. Navy, USS Oklahoma, St. Louis
  31. Torti, Natale Ignatius. Navy, USS Oklahoma, Louis
  32. Windish, Robert James. Marine, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  33. Windish, Robert James. Marine, USS Arizona, St. Louis
  34. Wise, Clarence Alvin. Navy, USS Chew, St. Louis

As reported by the St. Louis Star Times (a now defunct local newspaper) on 5-MAY 1942, “The Navy’s casualty list contained 2991, 2495 of which were missing and 907 wounded. Several St. Louis families still did not know the status of their loved ones as late as May of 1942.”

Pearl Harbor united Americans like no other time in history.  May be never forget their sacrifices.

Please contact the St. Charles County Veterans Museum Oral History project at sccvetsmuseum@gmail.com or call 636-294-2657 for more information and lets’ talk. We want to hear from you because we know…Every Veteran has a story.