Arthur R. Brown (1943/08/03)
A misstep and a splash from a gas can united to end the life of a marine cook.
Arthur Raymond Brown was born on August 29, 1923, in Santa Cruz to Raymond and Alice Brown. He had six sisters to watch over him during his formative years. He attended Mission Hill Junior High School and on February 2, 1939, entered Santa Cruz High School where he majored in carpentry.
In December 1941, Brown dropped out of school, entered the Merchant Marine Service and was trained to serve in the engineering department aboard transport and cargo ships.
Desiring more action, Arthur Brown left the Merchant Marines in February 1942, and in March joined the US Marine Corps. After completing training at Camp Pendleton, he was assigned to the 3rd Marine Division and served as a field cook. When he was promoted to chief cook, he became a non-commissioned officer.
While serving on an unidentified island in the South Pacific [probably in the Solomon Islands], he was carrying a can of gasoline past an open fire when some of the gasoline spilled into the blaze and exploded, engulfing him in flames. The attending medical officer noted in a letter to his parents that attempts to save him were unsuccessful. Sergeant Arthur R. Brown died on August 3, 1943.
His body was returned to Hawaii for burial in the National Cemetery at the "Punchbowl" on January 25, 1942.
(ABMC, SCHSC Pg. 6, SCR September 3, 1943 -2)