Veterans

October 31, 2013

Pearl Harbor survivor joins shipmates in final resting place

The family of Pearl Harbor survivor Coxswain Gale Mohlenbrink gathers at the USS Utah Memorial on Ford Island (right of photo)to scatter his ashes. Mohlenbrink’s remains joined the remains of more than 50 Sailors still aboard the USS Utah (BB 31) wreckage which was sunk during the 1941 attacks.

The ashes of Gale Mohlenbrink, a survivor of the Dec. 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, were scattered in the waters by his family near the USS Utah Memorial on Ford Island, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam during a ceremony Oct. 29.

He wished to be returned to Pearl Harbor, a place he always called paradise, to be reunited with his shipmates killed on that historic day.

“Today we return a shipmate back to his brothers in arms at this most hallowed spot,” said Capt. Lawrence Scruggs, deputy commander, Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility.

Among those in attendance were Mohlenbrink’s wife, Onah, and daughters Shiela and Corinne. Several Pearl Harbor Sailors were also on hand to pay respects to one of their own. Chaplain Lt. Rick Tiff, Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel, presided over the services.

Military honors included a gun salute and the presentation of the burial flag to the family by the Honors and Ceremonies, Joint Base Color Guard.

Following the speeches by Scruggs and Jim Taylor, Pearl Harbor survivor liaison, the family gathered on the walkway of the Utah Memorial where Mohlenbrink’s wife and daughter scattered his ashes into the water.

“It really gave me a sense of closure,” said Onah. “He didn’t really like to talk about what happened but he came back to visit many times. It was important to him and he always called this place paradise.”

“Gale Mohlenbrink was born in February of 1924 and joined the Navy at the tender age of 17. Needless to say, he witnessed the horrific attack at a very young age,” said Taylor.

Mohlenbrink was stationed to the heavy cruiser USS Northampton (CA 26), which was out to sea at the time of the attack. However, Mohlenbrink was assigned to work ashore on the Captain’s Gig and witnessed the attack unfold on Pearl Harbor.

“He had been assigned the highly impressive job of assisting in the overhaul and restoration of the Captains Gig,” said Scruggs. “A job entrusted to only the best Sailors, those who could be counted on to come to work early and stay late, the best of the best.”

After the attack Mohlenbrink worked to rescue his shipmates and went on patrol in the Hawaiian waters searching for the Japanese Battle Fleet. Heavily outnumbered after the attack, it was considered a potential suicide mission and yet he performed his duties with honor.

Mohlenbrink went on to serve his country with honor aboard USS Northampton in the Doolittle Raid, Battle of Midway and Battle of Guadalcanal earning six battle stars before the Northampton sunk in the battle of Tassafaronga. He survived her sinking, floating in shark infested waters until a Navy destroyer rescued him and fellow shipmates.

He later served combat duty on destroyer USS Edison (DD 439), fighting across the globe, before returning to Pearl Harbor in support of the final battles with Japan. He served throughout World War II in Pearl Harbor.

Gale Mohlenbrink passed away July 7th, 2013 of natural causes. With assistance from his family and the United States Navy, his final wish to return to the place he called paradise has come true.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines August 18, 2014

News: U.S. mission in Iraq could expand, Pentagon official says - The mission for U.S. troops in Iraq to help Kurdish and Iraqi security forces in their fight against Islamic militants remains limited for now, but may expand after Iraqi leaders form a new government, a Pentagon spokesman said Aug. 19.   Business: Fuel deals top...
 
 

News Briefs August 20, 2014

Trials complete on fourth Coast Guard cutter Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Miss., has completed acceptance sea trials for the company’s fourth U.S. Coast Guard national security cutter, Hamilton. Jim French, Ingalls’ NSC program manager, tells The Mississippi Press) the Hamilton is scheduled to be delivered next month and commissioned on Dec. 6 in Charleston, South...
 
 
Army photograph by Sgt. Thomas Duval

Air Force, Army Aviation come together to complete vital mission in Egypt

Army photograph by Sgt. Thomas Duval Soldiers and airmen load a UH-60 Black Hawk into an Air Force C17 Globemaster III Aug. 19, 2104, at an old Israeli airstrip in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt. The airstrip is now used by the M...
 

 
Air Force photograph by TSgt. Terri Praden

Joint effort validates ability to move Stryker vehicles via air

Air Force photograph by TSgt. Terri Praden An Army Stryker combat vehicle is guided into a C-17 Globemaster III during a 25th Infantry Division training exercise Aug. 13, 2014, at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. The Str...
 
 
NASA image

Ozone-depleting compound persists, NASA research shows

NASA image Satellites observed the largest ozone hole over Antarctica in 2006. Purple and blue represent areas of low ozone concentrations in the atmosphere; yellow and red are areas of higher concentrations. NASA research show...
 
 

F-16V completes major capability milestone

The newest configuration of the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the F-16V, has reached a major capability milestone with the integration of a new Active Electronically Scanned Array radar. Completing this milestone on schedule demonstrates our ability to meet program commitments, said Roderick McLean, vice president and general manager of the F-16/F-22 Integrated Fighter Group at Lockheed...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>