Gambier Bay &VC-10 Officers
USS Gambier Bay Commanding Officers
Hugh H. Goodwin:
(First Commanding Officer)
First Commanding Officer of the USS Gambier Bay (CVE-73) was Captain
Hugh H. Goodwin, USN. Although he had moved on to another assignment a few
months before the ship's last battle, "his strict training while we
were preparing for combat, his insistence that everyone aboard do every
job right every time, made us fight our ship at her best and also saved
many lives," according to Anthony Potochniak, an aviation technician
aboard ship. Captain Goodwin continued his Naval career to become Vice Admiral.
Walter V.R. Vieweg:
Commanding Officer of the Gambier Bay in her final action. After skillfully
handling his ship while under virtually constant bombardment from a Japanese
fleet for more than two hours, he had to order "Abandon Ship"
when his carrier was finally "in a sinking condition, surrounded by
three enemy cruisers firing at point blank range," as his official
ACTION REPORT stated. He retired from the Navy in 1954, as a Rear Admiral
and died of a heart attack in 1960.
Admiral Richard "Dick" Ballinger
Retired 1959 after 35 years of service.
Executive Officer USS Belleau Wood (CVL-16);
Director Naval Air Testing Center in Patuxent River;
Chief of Staff Patrol Wing FOUR in Seattle and Alaska;
Commanding Officer USS Kula Gulf (CVE-108);
Staff, Supreme Commander NATO;
Commanding Officer NAS Seattle.
Decorations: Silver Star; Presidential Citation (2 Ships)
Composite Squadron VC-10 Commanding Officers
of VC-10, the Gambier Bay’s composite squadron (fighter and dive
bomber planes), was Edward J. Huxtable Jr.
He was born in 1913 in Douglas, Ariz. His father
owned one of the town’s first drug stores and was active in civic
affairs, including aviation promotion.
Douglas had the first international airport in the
Americas. In 1933, it ranked as one of the 10 best airports in
the U.S. When Huxtable Sr. became the town’s postmaster, he helped
place Douglas on the first, regularly scheduled, federal airmail
Click here to read more of the article about Capt. Huxtable written by Cindy Hayostek of the Daily Dispatch in Douglas, Arizona
H. Burt Bassett:
Captain Henry Burt Bassett attended Davidson College and the University
of Florida where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree. Captain
Bassett entered Flight Class 158, Naval Air Station, Pensacola,
Florida on 15 October 1940 as an aviation cadet. After successful
completion of training, he was commissioned an Ensign on 1 July
1941. His first duty station was NAS, Corpus Christi, Texas as
a flight instructor and ground school instructor.
Click to read more to read more about Capt. Bassett
VC-10 insignia (Seahorse) shown
at the right
was designed by Ensign R.B. "Bob" "Tuffy" Barrows.
Mr. Barrows was a Torpedo Pilot in Composite Squadron VC-10.