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Turner, Richmond Kelly "Terrible Turner"

Date of birth:
May 27th, 1885 (Portland/Oregon, United States)
Date of death:
February 12th, 1961 (Monterey/California, United States)
Buried on:
Golden Gate National Cemetery
Service number:
0-6312
Nationality:
American (1776 - present, Republic)

Biography

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Rear Admiral
Unit:
Task Force Tare, U.S. Navy
Awarded on:
October 3rd, 1942
"For extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commander, Task Force TARE, during the Amphibious landings in the Solomon Islands on 7 August 1942. He, in spite of much enemy opposition and under repeated severe air attack, led his force with great courage and determination and was successful not only in carrying the initial attack through to complete victory but in landing supplies and equipment so that the objectives captured could be held and used in further operations against the enemy. His conduct throughout was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service."

Commander in Chief Pacific: Serial 022004
Navy Cross
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Rear Admiral
Unit:
Amphibious Force, South Pacific Force, Pacific Fleet, U.S. Navy
Awarded on:
February 25th, 1943
Distinguished Service Medal - Navy/USMC
"For exceptionally meritorious and distinguished service in a position of great responsibility to the Government of the United States, as Commander of the Amphibious Force of the South Pacific Force of the U.S. Pacific Fleet. During the period 7 August to 10 December 1942, he was in command of Task Forces employed in transporting, landing and supplying forces of occupation in the Solomon Islands. Forces under his command have been repeatedly subjected to enemy submarines, surface and air attacks. The continued success of American Arms against the enemy Japanese has been to a large degree due to his skillful organizing, dynamic leadership, executive ability and personal fearlessness. He has demonstrated professional skill of the highest order under the most difficult situations."

Commander in Chief Pacific: Serial 29
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Rear Admiral
Unit:
Assault Force, Central Pacific Force, U.S. Navy
Awarded on:
January 18th, 1944
Distinguished Service Medal - Navy/USMC
"For exceptionally meritorious and distinguished services to the Government of the United States, in a duty of great responsibility as Commander of a Task Force of the Central Pacific Force during the seizure and occupation of the Gilbert and Marshall Islands in November 1943. During this operation Rear Admiral Turner was in command of the Assault Force of the Central Pacific Force employed in the seizure of Tarawa, Makin, and Apamama Atolls, Gilbert Islands, and was in immediate command of the amphibious attack force which seized Makin Atoll. He guided the intricate preparations of the Assault Force with great wisdom, and exercised his command with vision and firmness, thus contributing substantially to the success of the operations."

Commander Central Pacific: Serial 39
--
Second DSM/N received as Gold Star
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Vice Admiral
Unit:
Northern Assault Force, U.S. Navy
Awarded on:
September 30th, 1944
Distinguished Service Medal - Navy/USMC
"For exceptionally meritorious and distinguished services to the Government of the United States, in a duty of great responsibility. As Commander Joint Expeditionary Force from 24 May 1944 to 12 August 1944, he was in overall command of the amphibious forces and attached support and naval defense forces which effected the assault and occupation of Saipan, Guam, and Tinian in the Marianas Islands. In addition he was in direct command of the Northern Assault Force which captured Saipan . His thorough planning, extensive experience, and tireless diligence in discharging the responsibilities of his command assured the success of these operations. His effective organization of anti-submarine and anti-aircraft defenses at Saipan and the degree of coordination attained between participating air, naval and ground forces were the product of his outstanding ability and broad experience. His personal courage, his skill in planning and operations, and his determination and outstanding leadership throughout were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service."

Commander 5th Fleet: Serial 0467
--
Third DSM/N received as Gold Star
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Admiral
Unit:
Joint Expeditionary Force, 5th Fleet, U.S. Navy
Awarded on:
June 9th, 1945
Distinguished Service Medal - Navy/USMC
"For exceptionally meritorious and distinguished service in a position of great responsibility to the Government of the United States, as Commander of the Joint Expeditionary Force of the FIFTH Fleet from November 1944 to May 1945. He prepared the intricate plans for and commanded at the objectives the amphibious operations which resulted in the capture and occupation of Iwo Jima and of positions in the Okinawa Gunto between February and May 1945. His mastery of the problems of coordination of the operations of the thousands of naval, air, and amphibious units under his command into a fighting team which accomplished its mission decisively against desperate enemy resistance ashore, and despite frequent air attacks during operations off Okinawa, was of the highest order. Forces under his command inflicted great damage on the enemy and advanced United States control of the sera and air from the Marianas well toward the shores of Japan. His outstanding personal example was an inspiration to the officers and men of his Command and combined with the skillful and aggressive leadership assured the success of the operations. His conduct throughout was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service."

Commander 5th Fleet: Serial 553
--
Fourth DSM/N received as Gold Star
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Admiral
Unit:
U.S. Navy
Awarded on:
October 17th, 1946
Distinguished Service Medal - Army (DSM)
"For exceptionally meritorious and distinguished service in a position of great responsibility to the Government of the United States from August to November 1944."

War Department, General Orders No. 121
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)

With 1 bronze service star and 2 silver service stars
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal
National Defense Service Medal (NDSM)

Sources