S1c Carroll Gale Greenfield,

Unknown Sailor

S1c Carroll Gale Greenfield

As did most families during the Great Depression, the Greenfields of Silverton, Oregon 40 miles south of Portland, hustled to earn a living.

Carroll Gale “Ted, then 21, drove a truck for a creamery in 1939. An older brother, Clarence, was a service station attendant. Their father, Hansford “Harry”, labored for a Works Progress Administration construction project. The WPA was a federal jobs program. The three men earned a combined $1,508 in 1939 — equivalent to about $27,000 in 2018.

Ted, who had graduated from high school, enlisted in the Navy in October 1940 — a path for many young men in search of a steady paycheck.

He was a seaman first class when he was killed on the U.S.S. Arizona in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941. He had just returned to the ship and was headed to the mess hall when the attack began.

His father, by then variously described in news stories as a constable or a special policeman, died of a heart attack the next February while standing on a street talking to fellow officers.

Two other sons served in World War II and survived. 

Ted Greenfield was born Dec. 25, 1919 in Nebraska, probably at or near Turkey Creek near the Kansas border and almost half way across the state. As of 1920 the father was a farmer at Turkey Creek. The family  moved to Oregon after April 1, 1935.


Sources: the Statesman Journal of Salem, Oregon; Census; Navy muster roll; Department of Veterans Affairs. This profile was researched and written on behalf of the U.S.S. Arizona Mall Memorial at the University of Arizona.

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