A Beaver's Tale

Annapolis man who came up from the ranks--that's Lt., (jg) A.H. Kerr, Jr., battalion commander of the senior class.

Scene: It's last fall and on a battle wagon in the South Pacific Jaygee Kerr's eyes are going bad on him, at least bad enough to keep him out of the line. But the Navy is his career, and with his exemplary record it's a simple matter to transfer over to Supply, where the physical requirements are not quite so rigid.

Scene: Spring of 1939 on the U. S. S. Bushnell off the coast of Colombia. Yeoman striker Kerr interrupts his daily routine long enough to read a dispatch confirming his appointment to the Academy. It was a happy day in Seaman 2/c Kerr's life, for the dispatch was the fulfillment of his motive for joining the Navy.

Algernon Hubbard Kerr (pronounced Carr), Jr. was born some years ago in Kerr (pronounced Carr), North Carolina, but contrary to popular opinion his first words were not "Re-co-verrrr booookks!" In March, several years later, 1938 to be precise, Civilian Kerr appears at a Navy Recruiting Station and commences his naval career. After 13 months as a seaman, he doffs his bell-bottoms for good and takes the oath as midshipman at the Naval Academy. Three years later, due to the acceleration of the course, he becomes an ensign USN and leaves immediately for a SoPac BB.

Lt. (jg) Kerr's battle experience in the South Seas was climaxed last fall as his ship participated in the Gilberts' operations, laying down a barrage of big shells in the face of enemy opposition. Then it wasn't long 'til he left the combat--and those pleasant days in the Fijis and the not-quite-so-pleasant days in the New Hebrides to return to the States for immediate duty at NSCS.

He has his heart set on supply ship billet, but the ship has to be "definitely in the Pacific!" By the time he reports following graduation, he should have his two full stripes, for the last ALNAV just missed him. Those four ribbons he wears are for expert rifleman, American theater, Asiatic-Pacific theater, and pre-Pearl Harbor.

With his line experience as assistant to the exec and assistant damage control officer coupled with his supply training, Lt. (jg) Kerr is the ideal Supply Corps officer.