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Photo # NH 48987:  LtJG Carlton B. Hutchins, USN, Sept. 1934

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Lieutenant Carlton B. Hutchins, USN, (1904-1938)

Carlton Barmore Hutchins was born on 12 September 1904 in Albany, New York. He was appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy from that state and graduated in June 1926. As a newly commissioned Ensign, Hutchins served on board the battleship Pennsylvania, then attended aviation courses at the Naval Academy and flight training at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. After receiving his aviator designation in February 1929 Ensign Hutchins was assigned to the aircraft carrier Saratoga, serving with Bombing Squadron Two-B and Fighting Squadron Six-B. In June 1929, he was promoted to Lieutenant (Junior Grade). In the Summer of 1931, he returned to Pensacola as an instructor. The following year, Hutchins began study at the Naval Postgraduate School and continued his higher education at the California Institute of Technology at Pasadena, from which he received a Master of Science degree.

In the Summer of 1934, Lt(JG) Hutchins reported to Scouting Squadron Five-B on board the light cruiser Memphis and transferred a year later to Scouting Squadron Six-B on the light cruiser Concord. In June 1936, he was promoted to Lieutenant and assigned to Naval Air Station, Anacostia in Washington, D.C. Hutchins next served with Patrol Squadron Seventeen, operating with the seaplane tender Thrush. In November 1937, he transferred to Patrol Squadron Eleven, based on the tender Langley. On 2 February 1938, while piloting a PBY-2 in a tactical exercise off the southern Californian coast, he collided with another VP-11 PBY-2. Exhibiting courage and coolness, Lt. Hutchins remained at his badly damaged plane's controls, allowing members of his crew to parachute to safety, but was killed in the plane's subsequent crash. For his "extraordinary heroism" on this occasion, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. Carlton B. Hutchin's remains were not recovered.

USS Hutchins (DD-476), 1942-1948, was named in honor of Lieutenant Hutchins.

This page features the only image we have concerning Carlton B. Hutchins.

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Photo #: NH 48987

Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Carlton B. Hutchins, USN

Photograph taken on 15 September 1934 when he was assigned to USS Memphis (CL-13).
He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for "extraordinary heroism" on 2 February 1938 when, as pilot of a PBY-2 patrol bomber, he remained at the controls of his badly damaged aircraft after it collided with another PBY-2 off the California coast, thus affording an opportunity for other crew members to parachute to safety. Lieutenant Hutchins was killed in the plane's subsequent crash, .

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 54KB; 560 x 765 pixels


Medal of Honor citation of Lieutenant Carlton Barmore Hutchins, USN (as given in a brief biography of Lt. Hutchins issued by the Navy Office of Information on 21 September 1967):

"For extraordinary heroism as the pilot of the United States Navy Seaplane PBY-2 No. 0463 (11-P-4) on the occasion of a collision with U.S. Navy Seaplane PBY-2, No. 0462 (11-P-3) while engaged in tactical exercises with the U.S. Fleet on February 2, 1938. Although his plane was badly damaged, Lieutenant Hutchins remained at the controls endeavoring to bring the damaged plane to a safe landing and to afford an opportunity for his crew to escape by parachutes. His cool, calculated conduct contributed principally to the saving of the lives of all who survived. His conduct on this occasion was above and beyond the call of duty."

If you want higher resolution reproductions than the "Online Library's" digital images, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

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Page made 30 January 2008