- William Sample
William Dodge Sample (
9 March 1898– 2 October 1945) was a Rear Admiralin the United States Navyand an Escort Carrier Division commander in World War II. Sample was born in Buffalo, New Yorkand attended the United States Naval Academyat Annapolis, Marylandin June 1918.
World War I and early career
World War Ihe served aboard USS Henderson (AP-1). For meritorious service during a fire on board that ship he received a letter of commendation from the Secretary of the Navy. Detached in August 1918, he served on several destroyers based at Queenstown, Ireland. He remained in the European Waters Detachment after the end of World War I.
In December 1921 Sample was transferred to the gunboat
USS Pampanga (PG-39)in the United States Asiatic Fleet.
Sample attended flight training at
Naval Air Station Pensacola, Floridaand was designated a Naval Flight Officeron 23 June 1923. Shortly thereafter he served as Commanding Officer of Scouting Squadron VS-1. In the 1920s he successively served in the Aviation Departments of USS Raleigh (CL-7), USS Richmond (CL-9), USS Arizona (BB-39), and USS New York (BB-34).
Sample served on board the carriers
USS Saratoga (CV-3)and USS Lexington (CV-2), commanding Fighter Squadron VF-5 on the latter from 1932 to 1934. Promoted to Lieutenant Commander, Sample saw duty at the Bureau of Aeronauticsfrom 1935 to 1937 followed by duty as Navigator in the aircraft carrier USS Ranger (CV-4)in 1938. In 1939 Sample was assigned as Air Operations Officer in USS Yorktown (CV-5). His last duty before World War II was as Supervisor of Aviation Training at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida.
World War II
At the outbreak of
World War II, he assisted in the conversion of the oil tanker Santee into an escort carrier, later designated USS Santee (CVE-29). Shortly thereafter he was promoted to Commander. Assuming command of that escort carrier on its commissioning, he was awarded a letter of commendation for service during Operation Torch; the invasion of North Africa.
Captain Sample assumed command of the large aircraft carrier
USS Intrepid (CV-11)on 19 April 19 1944. In May 1944 he was transferred to serve as Commanding Officer of USS Hornet (CV-12)and in the ensuing months participated in the Battle of the Philippine Seaand a strike against the Volcano Islands.
In late summer 1944 he was promoted to Rear Admiral. Sample's flag was in
USS Marcus Island (CVE-77)as Commander Carrier Division 27 for the invasion of Palau. In October 1944 at the Battle of Leyte Gulfhis Carrier Division 27 was part of Task Unit 77.4.2 (Taffy II) at the Battle off Samarunder Rear Admiral Felix B. Stump. In early 1945 Commander Carrier Division 27 and USS Marcus Island (CVE-77)supported the Invasion of Lingayen Gulf, Philippines. For the Invasion of OkinawaSample moved his flag to Carrier Division 22 and USS Suwannee (CVE-27).
Shortly after the war ended Sample was tragically listed as missing on
2 October 1945after his plane failed to return from a familiarization flight near Wakayama, Wakayama, Japan. Rear Admiral Sample was officially declared dead on 3 October 1946.
William Dodge Sample was the youngest rear admiral in the
Pacific Ocean theater of World War II.
USS Sample (FF-1048)was commissioned on 23 March 1968.
last = Cox
first = Robert Jon
year = 2006
title = The Battle Off Samar - Taffy III at Leyte Gulf
publisher = Ivy Alba Press
location = Murrieta, CA
last = Morison
first = Samuel E.
year = 1958
title = History of United States Naval Operations in World War II, Leyte, June 1944 - January 1945, Volume XII
publisher = Castle Books
location = Edison, New Jersey
id = ISBN 0-7858-1313-6
last = Y'Blood
first = William T.
year = 1987
title = The Little Giants: U.S. Escort Carriers Against Japan
publisher = Naval Institute Press
location = Annapolis, Maryland
id = ISBN 0870212753
* [http://www.bosamar.com The Battle Off Samar - Taffy III at Leyte Gulf] by Robert Jon Cox
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
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