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 Matthew John Wagner

Matthew John Wagner

Baltimore, Baltimore City, Maryland, USA
Death 9 May 2004 (aged 84)
Mesa, Maricopa County, Arizona, USA
Burial Unknown, Specifically: Baltimore City, Maryland
Memorial ID 8880329 · View Source
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Matthew enlisted in the U.S. Navy in January 1942. He served three years as a gunners mate aboard the battleship USS New Mexico, steaming more than 180,000 nautical miles and paticipating in every major naval engagement from Guadalcanal to Okinawa.

While Matt was aboard the USS New Mexico he survived even when the ship itself endured bombs, torpedoes, shore battery, suicide boat attacks and kamikaze attacks. Matt, her crew, and the USS New Mexico proved time and time again that they could not only dish it out but they could take it too.

On May 12, 1945, while softening Luzon for an invasion, Japanese suicide planes attacked their ship fiercely, one of the planes carrying a 500-pound bomb crashed into the stack (an area near the middle of the ship) and rammed through two decks before it blew up in the ammunitions room. Flames shot higher than the 70' flagpole. Fifty-eight men lost their lives and 119 others were wounded but Matt and the ship survived.

There were many other battles Matt loved to tell you about but the one he liked the best was steaming into Sagami Bay in August 1945 to make history as the first United States Fleet to enter a Japanese harbor since Commodore Perry took his fleet to Yedo Bay in 1854.

And when it was anchored in Tokyo Bay for the Japanese surrender September 2, 1945.

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  • Created by: Layla
  • Added: 6 Jun 2004
  • Find A Grave Memorial 8880329
  • Layla
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Matthew John Wagner (2 Sep 1919–9 May 2004), Find A Grave Memorial no. 8880329, ; Maintained by Layla (contributor 46519181) Unknown, who reports a Baltimore City, Maryland.