EM3c Lloyd Harold Tussey

Unknown Sailor

EM3c Lloyd Harold Tussey

Lloyd Harold Tussey was born Feb. 25, 1916 in Davidson County, North Carolina southwest of Greensboro. He was the oldest of nine children of Lona Temple Tussey, a homemaker, and Arthur D. Tussey, a farmer.

By 1920 the family lived in Lexington, population 5,234, the seat of Davidson County. Their home didn’t have electricity, but the boy experimented by using wires of the family car, sometimes attaching them to a metal tub of water and giving his siblings a shock by letting them touch the water.

Harold, as he was known, enlisted in the Navy on June 14, 1938. He was an electrician’s mate and petty officer third class on the U.S.S. Arizona when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941.

One of his last letters home, written Oct. 14, 1941, was donated in 2009 to the Davidson County Historical Museum. Written to a cousin, Bob Shoaf, Mr. Tussey described his work — “mostly repairing and checking circuits. It is a pretty complicated job on a Battleship, but I like it alright.”

“I’d like to go hunting with you, for the game is very scarce on these Islands,” he wrote. “But I guess it will be a good while before I’ll get back home.”

His name was emblazoned on the windshield for a NASCAR race on Memorial Day weekend in 2017. The tribute was arranged by a great-nephew, Troy Tussey, a mechanic for the Richard Childress Racing group. Both Troy and his son were given the middle name Harold in honor of sailor Harold.

In March 1942 he was honored at a memorial service at the Beulah Reformed Church (now the United Church of Christ) in Lexington. There is a cenotaph for him in the church cemetery, where his parents are buried.

At least two brothers also served in the military — Charles in the Army from February 1943 to 1946 and John in the Army during the Korean War.


Sources: the Greensboro (North Carolina) Daily News; the North State Journal of Raleigh, North Carolina; The-Dispatch.com of Davidson County, North Carolina; Richard Childress Racing web site; Census; Navy muster roll; North Carolina birth index; Beulah church cemetery. 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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