Here’s a December 7th salute to Admiral Chester Nimitz.
After the disaster of Pearl Harbor in 1941 (disaster for American forces, that is), Nimitz was the man appointed by President Franklin Roosevelt to take over the U.S. Navy’s Pacific Fleet and clean up the mess.
Six months later he was beating the Japanese in the major naval battles of Coral Sea and Midway, turning the tide (as it were) of the Pacific Ocean war. As we note in our profile, in 1944 “Nimitz was promoted to the newly-created rank of fleet admiral and became the naval equivalent to the Army’s General Dwight D. Eisenhower.”
When the Japanese surrendered in Tokyo Bay on 2 September 1945, almost four years after Pearl Harbor, it was on Chester Nimitz’s flagship, the U.S.S. Missouri. He got the job done.
(Photo of Chester Nimitz in 1939 from the Harris & Ewing collection in the U.S. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division. LC-DIG-hec-26876.)