Floyd Matthews Passes, Was Oldest Living Submariner
Back in 2006, I wrote about Floyd Matthews, who at the time was said to be the 2nd oldest living submariner. He passed away this week in Alabama, aged 105; his memorial service is today. I'm happy to see that the Patriot Guard will be there, and at his internment tomorrow at the Pensacola National Cemetary.
From the announcement of his passing on the U.S. Submarine Veterans, Inc. website:
Drum Base & SVWWII member Floyd Matthews of Florence AL departed on Eternal Patrol Sunday, February 24th 2008.Sailor, Rest Your Oar...
Floyd qualified on the USS S-44 (SS-155) in 1925. He was the oldest member of USSVI and celebrated his 105th birthday on February 3rd.
Arrangements are being made for Floyd to be buried at Barrancas National Cemetery, NAS Pensacola, in the coming week.
Although Floyd joined the Navy in WWI to fight the Hun, he was too late to get to Germany before Armistice Day. Floyd later volunteered for the Submarine Service, serving in boats without names, identified by Letter & Number only; i.e. O-6, S-12, S-4, R-13, O-4, R-14, S-43, & S-46.
Although eligible for retirement prior to the out break of hostilities in Europe in WWII, Floyd remained in the Navy and subsequently accepted a commission.
During WWII, among other assignments, he served as Commanding Officer of USS Chickasaw ATF-83 and USS Diver ARS-5. Floyd attained the rank of Lieutenant Commander prior to his retirement in 1949.
Floyd is preceded in death by two wives and is survived, among others, by his son John and Daughter Priscilla.
Bill Matthews asked me to "thank all your fellow submariners for all they've done for "Skipper" over the past many years. The family will never forget their kindness."
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in rememberance of 'Skipper' to the US Submarine Veterans Charitable Foundation, PO Box 3870, Silverdale WA 98383 or via the internet...
I'm assuming that LCDR Matthews was the oldest living submariner by the time he passed, and not just the oldest USVVI member. Does anyone know who takes the mantle from Floyd as the oldest living submariner?