PEOPLE--UNITED STATES

Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, USN, (1885-1973)

Frank Jack Fletcher was born in Marshalltown, Iowa, on 29 April 1885. Graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1906, he served in many ships over the next three decades, commanding five destroyers, a battleship and three other ships. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for distinguished conduct during the Vera Cruz intervention in 1914. Fletcher also held several staff positions and shore billets. Promoted to Rear Admiral in the later 1930s, he continued to receive important assignments. In December 1941, during the first weeks of the Pacific War, he commanded the abortive Wake Island relief expedition.

In early January 1942, Rear Admiral Fletcher was given command of a carrier task force with USS Yorktown (CV-5) as his flagship. After supporting the reinforcement of strategically vital South Pacific islands, his task force raided Japanese positions in the Central Pacific, New Guinea and the Solomons. In May and June 1942, he was senior officer present during the battles of Coral Sea and Midway, in which the Japanese fleet was decisively repulsed. As the U.S. took the offensive in August 1942, Vice Admiral Fletcher commanded the invasion of Guadalcanal and Tulagi, and fought the carrier Battle of the Eastern Solomons later in the month.

In November 1942, he became Commander, Thirteenth Naval District and Commander, Northwestern Sea Frontier. A year later, he was placed in charge of the Northern Pacific area, holding that position until after the end of World War II, when his forces occupied northern Japan. Vice Admiral Fletcher's final duty was as Chairman of the General Board, and he was advanced to the rank of Admiral upon retirement in May 1947. Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher died on 25 April 1973.

USS Fletcher (DD-992) was named in honor of Admiral Fletcher.

This page features a selection of photographs of Frank Jack Fletcher.

Click the photograph to prompt a larger view.

Photo #: NH 49563

Lieutenant Frank Jack Fletcher, USN


Photographed in civilian clothes in 1914, while he was serving in USS Florida (BB-30).

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 90KB; 625 x 765 pixels

 
Photo #: 80-G-14193

Vice Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, USN


Photographed on board ship, 17 September 1942.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, U.S. National Archives collection

Online Image: 74KB; 590 x 765 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: NH 91213

Vice Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, USN


Lighting his pipe, circa 1942-45.

Donation of George Fletcher, 1976.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 75KB; 590 x 765 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 94186

Admiral Montgomery M. Taylor, USN,
Commander-in-Chief, Asiatic Fleet (left);
Captain Frank Jack Fletcher, USN, Chief of Staff to CinC, Asiatic Fleet (center) and
Captain R.A. Dawes, USN, Commanding Officer, USS Houston (CA-30)

Ashore in the Far East, circa 1931-33.
Note mourning bands worn on their left sleeves.

Collection of Lieutenant Oscar W. Levy, USN(SC).

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 93KB; 740 x 605 pixels

 
Photo #: 80-G-32350

Battle of Midway, June 1942


Rear Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, Commander Task Force 17, alongside USS Astoria (CA-34) in the cruiser's Number Two Motor Whaleboat, at about 1300 hrs, 4 June 1942. Fletcher was transferring his flag from the bombed and immobilized USS Yorktown (CV-5).
Captain Spencer S. Lewis, CTF-17 Chief of Staff, is just starting up the ladder to board Astoria. Fletcher is behind him, just to the right of the boat's centerline, wearing binoculars with white straps. Commander Chauncey Crutcher, Astoria's Executive Officer, is watching in the upper left.
Note letters "AST" on the boat's bow.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, U.S. National Archives collection

Online Image: 122KB; 740 x 640 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: 80-G-10403

Pacific Fleet Flag Officers


At a shipboard awards ceremony, held at Pearl Harbor on 17 June 1942.
The officers are (left to right):
Vice Admiral William L. Calhoun, Commander, Service Force Pacific Fleet;
Rear Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, Commander, Task Force 17;
Rear Admiral Thomas C. Kinkaid, Commander, Cruiser Division 6;
Rear Admiral William Ward Smith, Commander, Task Group 17.2;
Rear Admiral Marc A. Mitscher;
Rear Admiral Robert H. English, Commmander, Submarines Pacific Fleet.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, U.S. National Archives collection

Online Image: 101KB; 740 x 605 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: 80-G-208653

Naval Air Station, Adak, Alaska


Rear Admiral Francis E.M. Whiting, Vice Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher and U.S. Representative Warren G. Magnuson (of Washington) at the airfield, upon the return of RAdm. Whiting to Adak, 29 January 1944.
Wing and engine of a Douglas R5D transport plane is in the left background,.
Official U.S. Navy Photograph, U.S. National Archives collection

Online Image: 73KB; 740 x 630 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: NH 62679

Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, USN
, Commander-in-Chief, Pacific

With other flag and general officers, at CinCPac Headquarters, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, circa 1944.
Those present are (left to right):
Admiral Nimitz;
Lieutenant General Delos C. Emmons, U.S. Army;
Vice Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, USN;
Admiral Raymond A. Spruance, USN and
Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner, U.S. Army.

Collection of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 120KB; 740 x 615 pixels

 


For higher resolution images see: Obtaining Photographic Reproductions

To the best of our knowledge, the pictures referenced here are all in the Public Domain, and can therefore be freely downloaded and used for any purpose.



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