S2c William Anthony Woods

Unknown Sailor

S2c William Anthony Woods

William Anthony Woods was born March 17, 1923 in Queens, New York. His mother, Mary Riggins Woods, was a homemaker and his father, Robert E. Woods, a bakery employee.

The son attended William Cullen Bryant High School. The spring 1940 Census said he was no longer in school and was seeking work. He enlisted in the Navy on Nov. 22.

The next spring he sent a Mother’s Day telegram that said “Everything I am or ever will be I owe to you.”

Mr. Woods was a seaman second class on the U.S.S. Arizona when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941.

For years the family honored his memory with a Mass early every December at Queen of Angels Church in the Sunnyside district in central Queens.

His brothers, both older, also served in the military — Albert in the Army from April 1941 to October 1945, and Robert in the Army from February 1943 to February 1946.


Sources: The North Shore Daily Journal of New York; the Tampa (Florida) Tribune; Census; Navy muster roll; U.S. Department of Veterans Affair death files; New York birth index. 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