MM1c Orville Lester Rusher

Unknown Sailor

MM1c Orville Lester Rusher

Orville Lester Rusher was a machinist’s mate and petty officer first class on the U.S.S. Arizona when he died in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941.

His step-brother, Tony Dorrell, also a machinist’s mate first class, died less than three months later on the U.S.S. Houston when it was sunk in the Battle of the Sundra Strait near Java.

Both men were honored at a memorial service in April 1942 at the High Hill Church west of New Cambria, Missouri about 120 miles northeast of Kansas City. The local newspaper described the large crowd, four ministers, Navy men from Kansas City, and family that attended. Tombstones to the two men were dedicated on Dec. 10, 1989 at the cemetery near the church.

Orville Lester Rusher was born Aug. 13, 1920. His father, Otto, a farmer, died in 1924 and his mother, Eva, remarried Henry Dorrell, whose first wife, Gertie, had died in 1923.

Orville enlisted on Dec. 14, 1937.

Sources: Macon (Missouri) Chronicle-Herald; Navy muster rolls; Marceline (Missouri) News; US Census; Facebook page for High Hill Church and 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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