My Cousin’s DNA

My mother sent this to me and of course I had to post it.  I am related to Charles Barkley (I’m his 3rd cousin once removed), and last night on Lopez tonight they revealed his ethnic ancestry from  a DNA test.   Turns out he is:

  • 0% Asian
  • 14% Native American
  • 11% European
  • 75% Sub Suharan African

This came about as the result of a question as to who is “blacker” – he or Snoop Dogg 🙂 Well, I’m they don’t say which lineage of his they tested and he’s such a distant cousin I’m sure this is not relevant for me, but it was interesting anyway. 

Please note: Charles Barkley + George Lopez – not always politically correct…..

mtDNA Testing in My Family’s Near Future?

This evening, as I was just finishing wrapping the final presents for the kids, I received an email about a distant cousin of mine.  I was contacted by a woman (we’ll call her Ms. C.) who is part of a project to identify remains of Korean War soldiers who died during the war.

Ms. C  contacted me in regards to my 2nd cousin, John Clinton Blount Jr. John Jr. was born in 1932 in Washington County, North Carolina to John Clinton Blount Sr. and wife, Alice V. McNair.  John was a member of Company L, 3rd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. He was listed as Missing in Action while fighting the enemy in North Korea on November 27, 1950. He was presumed dead on December 31, 1953.  His mom Alice McNair is part of my extended McNair family tree, the McNairs being my maternal grandmother’s family who, coincidentally enough is also named Alice).

When I received the email, I went back to my McNair family tree to look at John Jr.’s family structure.   I was hoping to reassess it for clues for how to proceed with doing more searching for his immediate family members since all I had was his name and the names of his siblings; nothing beyond that.

But then, as I looked at his mom Alice’s  record, I saw that her mom, Mary, was  Bullock by birth and I had a note in Mary Bullock McNair’s record that I suspected her to be the sister of my great-grandmother, Gracy Bullock McNair.  This would mean that John Jr. is a double cousin of mine.   And thus, if they were sisters, maybe there would be someone in the branch of the McNair family that I do know that may be a candidate for comparison testing.

Alas, I didn’t have enough documentation though that Gracy & Mary were sisters.  My research of census records and family information led me to believe that they both were the daughters of Lawrence & Chaney Bullock.   How could I determine for sure if the two ladies were sisters?  Well, I went back to Mary’s record and realized that though she died in 1950 in North Carolina I did not have her death certificate as a source.  So, off to Ancestry’s 1909-1975 NC death certificate database I went to look for it and found it within seconds.  Sure enough, her father is listed as Lawrence Bullock.

death certificate of Mary Bullock McNair

Now armed with this, I began to get really excited as this, combined with my other information, confirms for me that Gracy & Mary were indeed sisters.   So, I went back to the family tree and figured out who in our line would be of direct maternal descent who could have their mtDNA tested for comparison with remains (though, I’m not even absolutely sure right now that there are remains or if they want to have some on file in case there are remains found).

At first,  I guess I got overzealous for I thought I would qualify, but then realize that I descend from Gracy through her son, therefore, he would not have passed on anymore of her mtDNA.  But, she did have a daughter named Mary Della McNair, who had only one daughter, Gertrude.   Here is how Gertrude and John Jr. are related (this graph shows one relationship, through John’s father, but the Gracy & Mary shown as wives to the McNair men are the sisters I’m referring to)

Cousin Gertrude and my own grandmother were extremely close friends and my mother remains in constant contact with Cousin Gertrude and family.   I am going to hope that if Ms. C. is able to use mtDNA testing, that Gertrude’s daughter may agree to do it. Gertrude also has a granddaughter through one of her deceased daughters that may also agree to it.

Now, how did Ms. C find me?  I have my McNair family tree linked from the Washington County NCGenWeb pages and she found me that way.  Even though I am now the county coordinator for that site, I had my link added about three years ago.  Lesson learned? Share your data! You never know who it can lead to you.

Hmm… more to come as events warrant, but what an interesting thing to think about this Christmas Eve.

Family History in San Francisco

Have you ever been on an aircraft carrier??

I had a chance to visit one this past week during a recent trip to San Francisco.  I was in the city for academic reasons (attending the American Medical Informatics Association annual conference), but since I’d found out in May that the USS Hornet was now a naval museum in Alameda, CA, it was high on my priority list to visit.

One of my maternal grandmother’s brothers, Lorenza McNair, served on the USS Hornet for 13 months.  As a “ship’s company” member on the carrier from the day it was commissioned in November 1943 until early December 1944,  Lorenza experienced many battles during the Pacific campaigns in World War II.

In May, I blogged about my visit to Pearl Harbor, where Lorenza missed being present during the attack by only a few days. The ship he was stationed on at that time, the USS Portland, had left the base enroute to Midway.  After that visit, when looking at the ships he’d served on during his entire time in the Navy, I learned that the USS Hornet was outside San Fran.

Lorenza joined the ship the day it was commissioned, November 29, 1943. I found this picture in an online photo archive of the ship right about this time, in December 1943.

During his 13 months on the ship, the USS Hornet  participated in close to 30 air strikes in the Marshall Islands, Marianas Islands, Caroline Islands, the Phillipines and all throughout the Pacific Ocean battles.  Every time I review the historical record, I’m amazed at the ship’s extensive battle history and that my great-uncle experienced it all.


My friend went with me to visit the ship and we spent about 4 hours on board touring the various parts of the ship.

Never having seen an aircraft carrier before, I’d not realized how large the ship would be!  We started our time on the ship with a tour of the engine area of the ship.  The docent who did the tour was very knowledgeable and it was interesting to learn about how the engines operated.  Here is one of the steam engines in the ship.

They would convert the saltwater to steam in order to power the ship. Now, the ships have jet engines, but the steam engine rooms would get incredibly hot – up to 120-130 degrees or so depending on how high the ambient air temperature was outside.

Lorenza was a cook in the Navy – here is the main mess deck of the ship where he would have spent a majority of his time.  Of course, during active battles, men would be pulled from all parts of the ship to help out, so I imagine he helped during these times as well.

I have more pictures of the ship in my photo album, but I was so glad I was able to tour the ship.   So that I can contiue to learn more about what his life would have been like, I purchased a couple of books on the history of the ship from the gift shop onboard.  I also plan to contact the curator to find out what information they have on crew members from the first year of the ship in hopes of possibly finding something relevant to Lorenza.

As I’ve blogged before, Lorenza never talked about his military service, but I feel as if I’ve been able to have another glimpse into it this week.

Lorenza McNair (1921-2005) during the 1940s.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – My 16

I’m going to take Randy up on his Saturday Night Genealogy Fun for August 8, 2009.  Not because of the intent to document my ethnicity for that is very easy – to the best of my current knowledge, all (with the exception of 1) of my ancestors as far as I can trace have been black and former slaves. But for the intent of serving as a great way for others to find me should we have any shared ancestry I think this is an excellent idea!

My 16 great-great grandparents are:

1.  Unknown? – I am not exactly sure who the father is of my great-grandfather Barfield Koonce. No name is given on his death certificate, and I’ve only found Barfield enumerated with grandparents. Maybe if we had the 1890 census I’d know more, but this is one of my genealogy brickwalls.  Whomever it is, he would have likely been born around the 1850s in Craven County, North Carolina.

2.  Caroline KOONCE was the daughter of James & Isaih Koonce. Caroline was born around January 1851 in either Jones or Craven County, North Carolina.  After having my great-grandfather and at least one other child, Caroline married George C. West on March 18, 1891 in Craven County.  She died August 12, 1928 in Dover, Craven County, North Carolina.

3.  Thomas HOLLOWAY Jr. was born around 1853 in Wayne County, North Carolina.  He was the son of Thomas & Phillis HOLLOWAY.  He married Polly Hood around the late 1870s.  The family lived in Wayne County in 1880 and I do not know when he died.

4. Polly HOOD was born abt. 1860 likely in Wayne County, North Carolina.  Her mother’s name was Caroline.  Polly died in Ft. Barnwell, Craven County July 16, 1916.

5. Samuel Becton LAWHORN was born abt. 1871 in Craven County, North Carolina.  He was the son of Valentine & Harriett Lawhorn.  He married Cora Cox on May 28, 1899 and according to the Lawhorn Family Bible died April 11, 1917.

6. Cora COX was born March 3, 1876 in Craven County, North Carolina.  She was the daughter of Robert & Amanda Cox. Cora’s first husband was Samuel Becton Lawhorn whom she married May 28, 1899. After his death, she married neighbor Willie Morton on December 23, 1924.  She died November 26, 1949 in Craven County, North Carolina.

7. Randolph KILPATRICK was born September 2, 1885 in Craven County, North Carolina.  He was the son of Edward Kilpatrick & Violetta DONALD.  In 1905 Randolph married Mary Maggie HARVEY.  He died September 24, 1966 in Craven County, North Carolina.   (His mother Violetta is reported by family to be half Native American, and her grandson told me a few years ago that she had hair all the way down her back, a trait that was carried down to all of her daughters.  He remembers her from when she lived with him and his family and she died when he was about 15 years old.  So, this would make Randolph 25% Native American.)

8. Mary Maggie HARVEY was born August 4, 1889.  Her exact parentage is not exactly known, but according to family information, she was the daughter of two individuals that were both married to other people.  Her father was Clayton HARVEY and her mother is said to be a DAWSON, but I’m unsure if that was her mother’s married name or maiden name.  Mary died August 21, 1940, likely in Craven County, North Carolina.

9. William ROBINSON was born in September of 1830, likely in Columbus County, North Carolina.  He may have been the son of Bob & Hagar Robinson.  In 1855 he married Rebecca Toon. His date of death is unknown.

10.  Rebecca TOON was born in May 1841, likely in Columbus County, North Carolina. Her parentage is unknown as is her date of death.

11. John LENNON was born approximately in 1854, likely in Columbus County, North Carolina.  Another researcher has informed me that his parents were Josh & Barbary Lennon.  John married Etta Lennon March 30, 1882 in Columbus County, North Carolina.  His date of death is unknown.

12. Etta LENNON was born approximately in 1862, likely in Columbus County, North Carolina.  The current thought on her parentage is that she was the daughter of Council & Elizabeth Abigail Lennon though I am not 100% sure on this.  She married John Lennon in 1882 and married Isaac ROBINSON May 25, 1905.  Her date of death is unknown.

13. Andrew D. MCNAIR was born May 5, 1866 in Edgecombe County, North Carolina. He was the son of Rufus Tannahill McNair and Mariah Wimberly.  Andrew married Gracy Bullock around 1893, then after her death, married Bennie Slade.  Andrew died February 10, 1930 in Washington County, North Carolina.

14. Gracy BULLOCK was born in March 1874 in Edgecombe County, North Carolina.  She was the daughter of Lawrence & Chanie Bullock.  Gracy’s date of death is unknown, but it was prior to 1910.

15. Anthony WALKER was born in May 1850, likely in Washington County, North Carolina.  He was the son of Prince Walker & Lovey Boston.  Anthony married Martha Jane Baker on December 29, 1881.  He married Winnie Walker between 1910 & 1920.  Anthony died January 10, 1921.

16. Martha Jane BAKER was born in August 1853, likely in Washington County, North Carolina.  She was the duaghter of Daniel & Frances Baker.  Martha died between 1900-1910.

Are We Related?

Last night I received an email from a woman descended from an Annie McNair Dancy McCriddic.  She has found from Annie’s death certificate that her father was named William McNair.  William was born in North Carolina, and Annie was born specifically in Tarboro, Edgecombe County.   Today I called her and we had a great conversation about her quest for learning more about this McNair family.  She found my website and emailed me b/c of my McNair connections.

I’ve just spent some time going over the family structure and still haven’t found a conclusive relationship to my McNair line, but that does not mean there is not one.  Annie moved from North Carolina and was living in Texas by 1900, where she is living with the family of Powell Battle.   Powell was also from Edgecombe County and I believe associated with the same Battle plantation my own ancestors belonged to.

This will be fun to work with the researcher to try to figure this out.

This is Why I Never Go To Bed

I knew it was a mistake to get back on the computer after I *said* I was going to bed.  But, I had to check the email and feed readers “one last time.”  Well, now it’s going to cause me to be up long enough to do this blog post, but I couldn’t wait because what I found was too exciting!

Last week I learned of a new resources, a new website of NC  Maps.  I only had an opportunity to briefly consult it, planning to investigate it more in-depth this week.  Well, a researcher today shared the link with the Edgecombe County mailing list and pointed out in her post that the maps allow you to see the locations of properties. She specifically shared the link to at 1905 map.

So, off I go to look at this map and was elated to see my two surnames of interest EXACTLY just like I figured they were — the Wimberly property right next to the McNair property, and those two properties just south of the Battle property! 

I’ve been posting with some frequency lately on my McNair, Wimberly, Battle connections and this is just too perfect.   My 3rd great-grandfather, Rufus Tannahill McNair was likely the slave of Dr. Augustus Harvey McNair.  Rufus married Mariah Wimberly, whose mother was the slave of Kemp Plummer Battle and whose father was probably the slave of Robert Diggs Wimberly.  

I knew from census records that the white McNair, Wimberley and Battle families lived in proximity, but to have this visual is wonderful! Admittedly, I’ve not delved into land records very much for my research – this type of discovery definitely picques my interest.  Thanks so much to the North Carolina State Archives, the Outer Banks History Center, and the University of NC @ Chapel Hill for this wonderful resource!   This is truly made my day. 🙂

In Memoriam: Clifton E. Johnson Sr.

Tonight, my mother called me to inform me about the death of our cousin, Clifton E. Johnson Sr. Cousin Clif was my grandmother’s half-first cousin. Clifton represents my McNair family branch of Martin County, NC (which was one of the reasons I adopted that county for the NCGenWeb project). The closest ancestor that I share with Clifton is my 2nd great-grandfather Andrew D. McNair. Andrew was his grandfather. Clifton, born December 9, 1941, died yesterday, June 25, 2009 while on a trip to Asheville, NC.  He was the son of Charlie Mack Johnson & Wille Ann (McNair) Johnson. Clifton was an accomplished lawyer and held several “firsts” in North Carolina’s judicial system. He was the  1st black lawyer to be appointed assistant prosecutor in NC /  1st black judge to sit on the NC Court of Appeals / & the 1st black judge to attain the position of senior associate judge on the NC Court of Appeals  

Clif was once featured in Ebony magazine, and thanks to Google’s digitization efforts, I was able to quickly find the issue he was in after my mother told me that he was in it and the approximate time frame.  He was included in an article in the March 1971 issue on black judges in the South. I am next going to try and figure out how to order a back issue so we can have it in physical print.

When I was in the 6th grade, we lived about 1 mile from Clif and his family, and his daughter and I were in the same classroom.   I did not know him before that year, and only saw him once since that year (1986-1987).  However, in June of 2007 I did have an opportunity to speak with him briefly about the family history as I was working on it then.  He was a very nice man and my thoughts are with his family. 

When I called Cousin Clif, I’d called specifically to inquire if he was aware of a person whom at the time suspected was part of our family tree, Dred Wimberly.  I’d hypothesized that Dred was the brother of our shared ancestor, Mariah Wimberly McNair.  Dred too was in law, having served on the NC General Assembly and the NC Senate.  Dred was a former slave of Kemp Plummer Battle (see my recent post) and I only had circumstantial evidence to connect him to my tree, though strong evidence.   When I’d found a picture of Dred and showed it to my mother, her reaction was “He looks just like Cousin Clif! Just like him!”

Well, now that I have a few pictures of Clif, I have to say that I agree and I believe this solidifies my theory that Dred was part of our family.  Dred would be Clif’s 2nd great-uncle, but I find the resemblance striking.  Here is Dred juxtaposed with two different pictures of Clifton.

On another interesting note, Clif swore in my stepmother’s uncle, Henry E. Frye, when Henry became Chief Justice of the NC Supreme Court.  Tonight my thoughts are with Clif’s family. May you rest in peace Cousin Clif with our ancestors.

Relevant news items:

True Inspiration!

A couple of days ago, I discovered a new genealogy blog – Robyn’s blog, Reclaiming Kin.  I found her through Randy’s “Best Of the Genea-Blogs” post from Sunday.  Well, yesterday she posted on using court records for research and her experience of looking at records in Edgecomebe County, NC inspired my Tombstone Tuesday post of the gravesite of Kemp Plummer Battle, a resident of Edgecombe County whom owned some of my ancestors.

Well, last night Robyn emailed me stating that she had information to share regarding Kemp.  We spoke on the phone last night and it turned out that she had a great discovery!  The name Kemp P. Battle sounded familiar to her, so she went through some of her files and sent me a wonderful document.

Last year, while visiting the North Carolina State Archives, she’d transcribed some labor contract records from the Freedmen’s Bureau (M1909, Roll #56) which included some records of former slaves of Kemp’s.  The labor contracts were for work in the two years following the Civil War and Robyn explained that some were very formal, others were very casual.  In some cases, family clusters were maintained.

Among the transcription was my 4th great-grandfather, Allen Wimberly! Here is the list she provided:

Joe Battle, Henderson Dorsey, Jason Spicer, Jim Lawrence, York Lawrence, Jim McNear, Allan Wimberly, Alfred Wimberly, Joe Wimberly, Haywood Battle, Lewis Battle, Redding Battle, Norfolk Battle, Isabella Battle, Hardy Battle, Orph Battle, Jason Battle, Sarah Battle, Jerry Battle, Norfleet Dancy, & Illiad Dancey.

In addition to my own Allen Wimberly, some of these names I have seen previously in census records and county cohabitation records. I am not sure how they may connect with my own family, but I certainly need to continue to put these pieces together.  I also note the name “Jim McNear” which may be a variant of my McNair surname — Allen’s daughter Mariah married Rufus McNair; and Rufus I suspect to be a slave of Dr. Augustus Harvey McNair.

I am very excited about this and during the course of our conversation, Robyn stressed the need to take advantage of local Family History Centers for access to records. While I’ve known I need to do this, I have not managed to follow-through with actually ordering any records.  There are two locations in my county and they both are about 45 minutes away from me, but I’m going to have to just go!  So, one of them is open the 3rd Saturday of each month, so I hereby resolve to take a field trip this Saturday to go and place an order for at least two films.

Here is my 1st list of film to work through.  It may take me several months since I will probably order only two at a time, but at least I have some identified right?

Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Original wills Ausley, Joseph – Bryan, Thoma Film #1548856
Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Original wills Killibrew, John I. – Middleton, S. O. Film #1571217
Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Estate records 1748-1917 Barnes, Archelaus – Battle, Joe Film #2069673
Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County):  Estate records 1748-1917 Battle, John – Bell, Bythel Film #2069674
Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Estate records 1748-1917 Law, William – Mayberry, Charles Film #2070395
Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County):  Estate records 1748-1917 Williams, Henry – Winstead, Richard Film #2070963
Will records and index, 1760-1964, with a few marriages (Jones County, NC): Index to wills 1779-1964 Film #386902
Will records and index, 1760-1964, with a few marriages (Jones County, NC): Wills 1760-1842 Film #19228
Will records and index, 1760-1964, with a few marriages (Jones County, NC): Wills 1778-1868 Film #19238 Items 1-3
Pre-1914 cemetery inscription survey, Columbus Co. (NC) Film #882937 Item 11
Pre-1914 cemetery inscription survey, Martin Co. (NC) Film #882938 Item 25
Civil actions concerning slaves and free persons of color (Craven County, North Carolina), 1775-1885 No Film # in record
Craven County, North Carolina, pre-Civil War slave related papers, including petitions for freedom, 1775-1861 Film 2299351 Item 2

This will be quite intersting. Thank you Robyn for an exciting discovery and for inspiration!

Saturday Night Fun This Week

I’m feeling all inspired again with my genealogy blogging! I’ve gotten some great thoughts from reading others’ blogs. For this post, I’m taking Randy up on his last Saturday Night Fun quest, Where Were They in 1909?

The task was as follows:

1) Which of your ancestors were alive in 1909?

2) Tell us where your ancestral families were living in 1909. What country, state, county, city/town, etc. Who was in the family at the time? Use the 1910 census as “close enough.”

3) Have you found each of these families in the 1910 census?

Here is a brief synopsis of my ancesestral families and what they were up to in1909. To keep it simple, I’m going to go three generations back to my great-grandparents.

Barfield & Josephine (Holloway) Koonce – my father’s paternal grandparents were both alive and living in Craven County, North Carolina.  The family was from this area.  In 1909 they had been married for about six years and had two children, son Hampton and daughter Minnie.  The third child that appears in their 1910 census record would not be born until early in 1910.

William Lawhorn Jr. – In 1909, my father’s maternal grandfather was not yet born! He was born August of 1910, so his parents, Sam & Cora (Cox) Lawhorn were close to his arrival as their 3rd child.  His parents were also living in Craven County, NC and I have located them in the 1910 census. His future wife, Pearlie Kilpatrick, was not born until 1912.  I’ve found her too in 1910.

Lewis “Christopher Columbus” Robinson & Lucinda (Lennon) Robinson – my mother’s paternal grandparents have thus far eluded me in the 1910 census.  I periodically search for them, but I’m not sure where to look for them! They were both from the Columbus County area of North Carolina, but by 1920 they’d moved to New York.  I do not know for certain when they were married, but their oldest child, Ethel,  was born in 1908 in Wilmington, New Hanover County, North Carolina.   Their next child was not born for another 5 years. I have located a man that fits his description (age, race, state of birth) in the 1910 census living in Trenton, NY as a hired man, but I’m not sure if this is really him or not.  If it is him, I suspect perhaps Lucinda may have been living with family with their young daughter? In any case, I’ve still got some searching to do.

Abraham Lincoln McNair– In 1909, my mother’s maternal grandfather was a 13 year-old boy living  in Plymouth, Washington County, North Carolina with his father and five siblings.  His mom, Gracy (Bullock) McNair seems to have passed by 1909 and soon after, his father would remarry.  His future wife, Martha Jane Walker, was 12 years old, living in the same town, with her own parents, Anthony Walker and Martha Jane Baker and 4 other siblings.  I have located both of them in the 1910 census.

So, of my 8 great-grandparents, only two were not yet born in 1909.  I obviously have work to do tracking Lewis & Lucinda down in 1910.  Very interesting to reflect on this.  Thanks Randy!

My Visit to Pearl Harbor

From Hawaii 2009

I’ve just returned home from a 4 day visit to the beautiful island of Oahu, Hawaii. I was there for a business trip, the annual gathering of the Medical Library Association. It has been busy and interesting and on Monday I had a chance to do something I had been looking forward to for months – I visited Pearl Harbor.

My desire to visit Pearl Harbor is very emotionally driven.  Though I did not have anyone in my family perish that day, my great-uncle, Lorenza McNair, served in the US Navy during this time and was at Pearl Harbor just days before the attack and would serve on ships fighting in the Pacific Campaign for many months to follow.  I’ve blogged some before about his military time, but this visit was a chance for me to revisit what I know about his service and I’ve decided to do a more timeline based approach so I can visualize his experience better.

On December 7, 1941, when Pearl Harbor was attacked, my uncle was two days away on the USS Portland, which had left Pearl Harbor as part of a carrier fleet en route to Midway Islands.  During our visit, we watched a short documentary before going over to the Arizona memorial and at one point the narrator refers to the USS Portland having been out en route to Midway and I nearly started crying when they said that because it was such a clear reference to where Lorenza was at the time.

Following the attack, Lorenza would stay on the USS Portland, eventually transferring to the USS Neosho. The USS Neosho was one of the ships docked in the line of ships when the USS Arizona was sunken; Neosho was about 5 or 6 ships away from the USS Arizona.  Neosho sustained damage, but was repaired and sent back out.   Both the USS Portland & the USS Neosho were near each other in the waters at the time, and Lorenzo was transferred to Neosho.  He transferred on May 6th, 1942.   On May 7, 1942 the Neosho was attached and lost 80% of the crew.  My uncle was one of 123 men rescued afterwards.

After the attack, I noted in Lorenza’s records a gap of a few months and I’d wondered where he had been.  Then, in re-reading my earlier blog post about his military experience, I realized that in the newspaper article about him that my grandmother had a copy of, it mentions that he was home on furlough after the attack, so that explains the gap in his service records.  After his furlough, Lorezna was stationed at NAS San Diego and stayed there for 2 months before going to the USS Enterprise.

Lorenza was on the USS Enterprise from October 8, 1942–  until at least September 30, 1943.  The USS Enterprise saw a lot of activity during the war and is the most decorated ship of WWII.  While on this ship, Lorenza participated in the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands, the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal, and the Battle of Rennell Island.

For it’s service, on May 27, 1943, Lorenza and the rest of the USS Enterprise crew received the Presidential Unit Citation, a citation given for heroic action during Japanese crew in the Pacific.  Lorenza’s ship sunk or damaged 35 Japanese vessels and shot down 185 Japanese aircraft.

In November of 1943 Lorenza moved to the USS Hornet where he would stay for the next 13 months.  The USS Hornet left Pearl Harbor in March of 1944; Lorenzo was on it then, and during the time period he was on the ship, his records show 27 carrier strikes in which the ship participated.  After leaving the ship in December of ’44, Lorenzo was transferred to NAS San Diego again and eventually moved to Shoemaker, CA where he separated from the Navy in December of 1945.

From Hawaii 2009

Thoughts of Lorenza were very much with me as I toured the USS Arizona Memorial. I wonder if Lorenza knew any of the people that perished during the Pearl Harbor attack?  I am glad that I had the opportunity to visit and be on the same ground that Lorenza had been.   I’ve blogged more specifically about my time at the memorial and other info about my trip on my main blog.