Joseph H. Heatwole (1943/05/19)
A plane crash in Santa Ana prevented Joe from doing the job for which he had trained.
Joseph Hunter Heatwole was born in Fresno County, California, on March 17, 1918, to Joseph and Harriet Heatwole.
In 1920 the Heatwole family was living in Fresno, California, where Joseph Sr. worked as a carpenter. The family later moved to the Green Valley sector of the Pajaro Valley and Joseph Jr. enrolled in Watsonville High School. In high school he distinguished himself in football, basketball, track and tennis and was graduated in 1936. Following his graduation, he enrolled in San Jose State College where he played on the basketball team.
Heatwole may have received his commission as an ensign in the US Navy prior to January 1942. The Watsonville Register-Pajaronian indicated that he had served at Pearl Harbor and Maui in the Hawaiian Islands from January to November 1942. in December 1942 following his Hawaiian assignment, Heatwole married Jean Salmon of San Jose. The couple left immediately for Santa Ana, where he was assigned to a naval aviation unit.
On May 19, 1943, Lieutenant Joseph Hunter Heatwole was killed in a plane crash in the Santa Ana area. His remains were returned to San Jose and following a funeral at the Amos O. Williams chapel, were interred in the Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno, California on May 24, 1943.
(CBR; WRP May 20, 1943 1:2; Williams Funeral Home Book 1943 Pg. 159; USDVA; Photo-WHS)