F1c John Junior Fess,

Unknown Sailor

F1c John Junior Fess

John Fess Jr. joined the Navy to learn diesel engineering. He achieved his goal, studying in a Navy program in San Diego in 1941.

He visited his family in Torrance, California that October and then headed to Hawaii and the U.S.S. Arizona, where he was a fireman first class. He was killed on Dec. 7, 1941 in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

Mr. Fess was born in Torrance on Sept. 14, 1920 to John Fess, a Canadian immigrant who worked for the fire department and later in parks maintenance, and Persia Fess, a practical nurse. He had one older brother.

Mr. Fess graduated in 1939 from Torrance High, where he played varsity basketball and tennis. He also played the piano. He attended a trade school in Los Angeles and worked as a linotyper at the Burbank Post. He enlisted on June 13, 1939.

Sources: the Torrance Herald; Navy muster rolls; Census; Veterans Administration; 1937 Torrance High yearbook. 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