ISAAC WESLEY KEELS, JR. 146105
Born 9 October 1921 at Ebenezer, South Carolina. Entered primary school at the age of five at Woodlawn, N. C. Attended several other grammar schools including Pineville, Prospect and Waxhaw. Graduated from Waxhaw High School, Waxhaw, North Carolina in the year 1938.
He was a member of the Presbyterian church and was active in young peoples work. He also attended Bible school in the summers and participated in the activities.
Entered Brevard College in the fall of 1938 where he worked part time to help pay his way through. He was active in sports such as tennis and football when time permitted. He had a yellow T-Model which he used to transport the teachers from their dormitories to school when the snow was too deep for other cars to travel. He was a very fast driver and became known around campus as "Red Lightening". He graduated from college in 1940.
After graduation he started to work at the Eucasta Paper Corporation in the laboratory testing cigarette paper. While working there he took Civil Air Patrol at Hendersonville, North Carolina and received his pilot license.
He has four brothers and three sisters. James A. Keels employed with the Signal corps in Arlington, Virginia, Elizabeth who is married and lives in Boston, Mass., Nannies Keels employed with the Department of the Army in Washington, D. C., Patterson Keels of the Brown Equipment Company, Charlotte, N. C., Lillie Earle Keels employed with the Veterans Administration in Washington, D. C., and Orean and Charles Keels of the home in Monroe, N. C. with their parents.
Wesley enlisted in the U. S. Naval Reserve on 9 February 1942. Upon termination of enlistment on 13 May 1942 he accepted an appointment as Aviation Cadet and reported to Navel Air Station, Jacksonville, Florida for training. Was promoted to tank of Ensign 2 January 1943 and reported for temporary active duty involving flying under instruction from a carrier. On 4 April 1943 was assigned to Carrier Qualification Training Unit, Norfolk, Virginia for temporary duty involving carrier training. Was then ordered to Air Force, Atlantic Fleet, Cape May, New Jersey for active duty connected with the fitting out of Composite Squadron 30. Transferred to Fleet Air, West Coast on 5 October 1943 and assigned to Fighting Squadron 36. Promoted to Lieutenant Junior Grade 1 March 1944 and assigned to Fighting Squadron 18. Was reported missing in action 12 October 1944 when the plane in which he was flying, a unnit of Fighting Squadron 18, was lost during an aerial engagement with the enemy planes over Formosa. Presumed dead after one year as no further information was received. No memorial service has been held.
Decorations received were American Area Campaign Medal, World War 11 Victory Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Area Campaign Medal - One (1) Bronze Star and the Purple Heart.
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