S1c John Edward Smith

Unknown Sailor

S1c John Edward Smith

John Edward Smith was born June 5, 1921 in South Bend, Indiana. His father, Edward Oscar Smith, was a Navy aviation metalsmith and petty officer first class and his mother, Mildred Beulah Swygart Smith, was a homemaker.

The family moved to San Diego by 1923, where the father continued his Navy career. The son attended Memorial Junior High School in the city’s Logan Heights neighborhood near San Diego Bay.

The son enlisted in the Navy on Nov. 16, 1938. He was living in National City south of San Diego in June 1941 when he married Belle E. Cunradi in Yuma, Arizona. His ship, the U.S.S. Arizona, was in port at San Pedro, and many sailors and their fiancées traveled to Yuma because they could be married the same day with no waiting.

Less than six months later the new husband was a seaman first class on the Arizona when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941.

A younger brother was in the Navy.


Sources: the San Diego (California) Union; Navy muster roll; San Diego city directory; Indiana birth record. This profile was researched and written on behalf of the U.S.S. Arizona Mall Memorial at the University of Arizona.


NOTE: If you are a family member related to this crew member of the U.S.S. Arizona, or have additional information, pictures or documents to share about his life or service to our county please contact us through our FAMILY MEMBER SUBMISSION FORM