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Sellstrom, Edward Robert

Date of birth:
July 19th, 1916 (Gowrie/Iowa, United States)
Date of death:
June 21st, 1942
American (1776 - present, Republic)


Edward Robert Sellstrom was born in Gowrie, Iowa, on 19 July 1916, and graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnisota, in 1939. He enlisted in the Naval Reserve as Seaman second class at Minneapolis on 14 January 1941 and was appointed Aviation Cadet at Pensacola, Florida, on 20 March 1941. On 15 September 1941, he was commissioned Ensign, US Navy Reserves (USNR). After duty in the Advanced Carrier Training Group, Pacific Fleet, he was assigned to Fighter Squadron 3, on board carrier U.S.S. Lexington. Ensign Sellstrom was killed in an airplane crash on 21 June 1942.

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Second World War (1939-1945)
Fighter Squadron 3 (VF-3), U.S.S. Lexington, U.S. Navy Reserves
On 20 February 1942, Ensign Sellstrom intercepted an enemy four-engined bomber, determinedly pursued it through clouds and rain, and assisted in shooting it down despite heavy machine gun and cannon fire. Later that day, he intercepted and shot down another aircraft during an attack directed at his carrier by nine enemy bombers. As a result of his "skillful marksmanship and courage," he was awarded the Navy Cross.
Navy Cross


  • Photo 1: Gustavus Adolphus College Alumni Association
  • Photo: Gustavus Adolphus College Alumni Association
  • - Sterner C.D., Recipients of The Navy Cross, 1916 - Present
    - Department of the Navy- Naval Historical Center 805 Kidder Breeze SE -- Washington Navy Yard Washington DC 20374-5060