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  Texas : Features : World War II

NAVY ENSIGN JACK HILL CAMP

1916-1942
Port Arthur, Texas
Navy ensign Jack Hill Camp
A photo of Jack Hill Camp taken during training at Naval Air Station, Jacksonville, Florida
Photo Courtesy Museum of the Gulf Coast
Jack Camp had only recently graduated with a law degree from the University of Texas when WWII was declared. Being in the Naval Reserve, Ensign Camp reported to active duty. He was assigned to PBY Squadron 44 stationed on Midway Island.

While piloting his Catalina seaplane on a scouting patrol, the American plane spotted the Japanese aircraft carrier group that was steaming toward the American held island. The slow-moving Catalina was shot down by enemy fire, but not before relaying critical data to American forces.

Camp was wounded in the attack that brought down his plane, and while he was helped into a life raft by surviving crewmates, the raft was then strafed by the enemy - killing him.

He was buried at sea June, 7th 1944.

A display in the Museum of the Gulf Coast in Jack Camp's hometown of Port Arthur was sponsored by his High School Graduating Class of 1934.


May 2003
John Troesser

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