Cerro Gordo County

Lt. (j.g.) Harper S. Joslyn

 

 

Harper Joslyn, who has enlisted in naval aviation, left Friday for Minneapolis, Minn., to report for duty at the Chamberlain-Wold airport.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, February 13, 1942

Cadet Harper Joslyn Begins Solo Work

CLEAR LAKE—Cadet Harper Joslyn who is stationed at the U. S. naval reserve base, Wold-Chamberlain Field, Minneapolis, Minn., recently completed his ground school work with the highest marks in the class, it was learned Tuesday. Cadet Joslyn has already done some solo work and will complete the required number of hours before leaving April 14 for further training at New Orleans, La. He reported in at Wold-Chamberlain Feb. 14.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, April 7, 1942

AWARDED PURPLE HEART—Dr. and Mrs. A. A. Joslyn, Clear Lake, have had word from their son, Ensign Harper S. Joslyn, that he has been awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received in action. Ensign Joslyn, serving as a naval aviator pilot, was struck on the right side of the head above the temple by a machine gun bullet while on duty somewhere in the South Pacific. At the time of writing he had been released from the hospital and was ready for active duty again.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, November 11, 1943

Lt. (j. g.) Harper S. Joslyn Is Reported Missing in Flight
Naval Aviation Pilot Has Been Overseas Since January, 1943


Clear Lake—Dr. and Mrs. A. A. Joslyn, 515 E. Main street, received a message Thursday afternoon from Washington, D.C., stating that their son, Lt. (j.g.) Harper S. Joslyn, is missing. The full text of the message follows:

“The Navy department deeply regrets to inform you that your son, Lt. (j.g.) Harper Smyth Joslyn, U. S. N. R., is missing in plane flight while in the performance of duty and in the service of his country. The department appreciates your great anxiety but details are not now available and delay in receipt thereof must necessarily be expected. To prevent possible aid to our enemies, please do not divulge the name of his ship or station. Vice Admiral Randall Jacobs, chief of naval personnel.”

Lieutenant Joslyn enlisted in the Navy early in 1942 and began training at Wold-Chamberlain field, Minneapolis, Feb. 14, 1942. From there he was sent to New Orleans, La., and then to Pensacola, Fla. In December of the same year he was graduated from the naval air base at Corpus Christi, Texas, with the rank of ensign and received his wings, having credit for 310 flying hours. He then was assigned overseas duty.

Last June he was in San Francisco, Cal., for a short time but was unable to get leave to come home. In November his parents had word that he had been wounded in action, being struck on the right side of the head by a machine gun bullet while in the South Pacific. For this he was awarded the Purple Heart. After a period of hospitalization he returned to duty. A letter written Jan. 20 stated he had been given a short vacation and had been promoted from the rank of ensign to that of lieutenant, junior grade. His work was that of a naval aviation pilot.

Just a few weeks ago Dr. and Mrs. Joslyn received word from their son advising them not to send him any more mail. They have since been expecting him to arrive home any day. Lieutenant Joslyn was born and reared in Clear Lake and graduated from the local high school. He attended the University of Iowa, Iowa City, a year and then was employed by the Sears Construction company for some time before entering the service.

Lieutenant Joslyn has 2 sisters, Mrs. Ray Gambell, Murfreesboro, Tenn., and Miss Alberta Joslyn, student at the University of Iowa, and a brother, Tom, at home.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, March 24, 1944 (photo included)

35 Cerro Gordo Men Killed in Action in 2 ½ Years of War

Memorial Day this year marks almost 2 ½ years since the United States entered World War II. Of the more than 11 million men serving with the U.S. armed forces at home and overseas, it is estimated that Cerro Gordo county has contributed 4,100 men.

Missing in action:
Lt. (j.g.) Harper S. Joslyn, in plane flight in Pacific, announced by Navy, March, 1944.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, May 30, 1944

LIEUT. H. JOSLYN RECEIVES UNIT CITATION

Dr. and Mrs. A. A. Joslyn of Clear Lake have received a copy of the Presidential Unit Citation presented by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to Bombing Squadron 104 of which their son Lt. (j. g.) Harper Joslyn, reported missing in plane flight, April 24, 1944, was a member.

Lt. Joslyn enlisted in the navy in early 1942 and was graduated in December from the naval air base at Corpus Christi, Texas, with the rank of ensign and received his wings. He soon had an overseas assignment as naval aviation pilot and continued in active duty from then on. In November 1943, he was wounded on the head by a machine gun bullet and for this received the Purple Heart decoration.

His mother is the former Adelaide Wheeler of Laurens.

Source: Laurens Sun, January 25, 1945

Lt. (j. g.) Harper S. Joslyn Is Officially Declared Dead
Dr. and Mrs. A. A. Joslyn Receive Notice From Secretary Forrestal


Clear Lake—Dr. and Mrs. A. A. Joslyn, 400 S. 2nd street, have received a letter from James Forrestal, secretary of the navy, stating that their son, Lt. (j. g.) Harper S. Joslyn, who has been carried on official records of the navy department as missing in action since March 7, 1944, is now regarded as dead. For legal purposes the death is presumed to have occurred Jan. 16, 1946. The plane in which Lt. Joslyn was flying, a unit of bombing squadron 104, failed to return to its base from a routine search mission at sea.

Secretary Forrestal said, “In view of the additional length of time that has now elapsed since your son was reported missing in action, because of the strong possibility that he lost his life when the plane in which he was flying failed to return to its base from a routine search mission at sea and in view of the fact that his name has not appeared on any lists or reports of personnel liberated from Japanese prisoner of war camps, I am reluctantly forced to the conclusion that he is deceased.

“I know what little solace the format and written word can be to help meet the burden of your loss but, in spite of that knowledge, I can not refrain from saying, very simply, that I am sorry. It is hoped that you may find comfort in the thought that your son gave his life for his country, upholding the highest traditions of the Navy.”

Lt. Joslyn enlisted as an aviation cadet Jan. 2, 1942; entered the service at Wold-Chamberlain Field, Minneapolis, Feb. 14, reported at New Orleans, La., April 14, and completed his course at Corpus Christi, Tex., in December, receiving his silver wings and a commission as ensign in the U. S. naval reserves.

He spent a 15 day leave at home and then reported at San Diego, Cal., and was sent to Hawaii. In October, 1943, he was wounded in action and later awarded the Purple Heart decoration. The next February he advanced to the rank of lieutenant, junior grade, and in March was reported missing. Bombing squadron 104, of which Lt. Joslyn was a member, received the presidential unit citation from President Franklin D. Roosevelt in December, 1944, for “outstanding performance in forward areas of Japanese controlled territory in the South Pacific from Aug. 14, 1943 to March 1944.

The bomber command, Aircraft Solomen Islands, of which Lt. Joslyn was a member, was commended by Maj. Gen. N. F. Twining, U.S.A.; Col. William A. Matheny, air corps; and Comdr. H. E. Sears, U.S.A. for special air operations carried out Sept. 14-16, 1943, against the enemy in the Solomon Islands. Lt. Joslyn was entitled to wear the American Theater ribbon with Arabic numeral 1 and the Asiatic-Pacific ribbon with Arabic numeral 3, with a bronze star and a silver star.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, March 8, 1946 (photo included)


FATHER RECEIVES SON’S AWARDS
—Dr. A. A. Joslyn, 400 S. 2nd street, Clear Lake, received a group of awards made posthumously to his son, Lt. (j.g.) Harper Smyth Joslyn, USNR, in ceremonies at the All Veterans Social Center, Clear Lake, Wednesday evening, by Comdr. Richard T. Paynter of the 9th naval district. In the picture Dr. Joslyn left, is shown receiving the Distinguished Flying Cross from Comdr. Paynter who represented Secretary of the Navy James Forrestal, for the President.

Lt. Joslyn earned the awards taking part in serial operations against the Japanese forces in the Solomon, Gilbert and Caroline Islands and Bismarck Archipelago areas. For security reasons citation during the war were temporary or incomplete. These are now made permanent.

The text of the full citation for the D.F.C. is as follows:

“For heroism and extraordinary achievement in aerial flight as co-pilot of a Liberator attached to Bombing Squadron 104 in action against enemy Japanese forces in the Solomon, Gilbert and Caroline Islands and Bismarck Archipelago area from Jan. 15 to March 7, 1944. Participating in 5 flights carried out through day and night operations during hazardous weather, Lt. (j.g.) Joslyn engaged in combat and search missions at long range from base over enemy territory and secured information vital to our forces in their sustained drive against the enemy forces in these areas. His devotion to duty, perseverance and initiative contributed materially to the success of Bombing Squadron 104 and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

The full citation for the Gold Star in lieu of his 2nd air medal is the same as above excepting that it covers the period between Sept. 30 and Nov. 18, 1943. The citation for the Gold Star in lieu of a 3rd air medal is also the same excepting that the dates are from Nov. 19, 1943, to Jan. 14, 1944. The permanent citation for the air medal is likewise the same excepting that the dates are from Aug. 26 to Sept. 29, 1943.

Lt. Joslyn enlisted in the navy in January, 1942, and was commissioned an ensign at Corpus Christi, Texas, Dec. 15, 1942. He was soon assigned to overseas duty as naval aviation pilot and was on active duty from then on. In October, 1943, he received a head wound and was later awarded the Purple Heart decoration. He was missing in action March 7, 1944, his plane failing to return to its base. No further information being discovered, in 1946 the navy department officially declared him dead.

Also attending the ceremony Wednesday evening were Mrs. Joslyn, daughter, Mrs. Reeves Hall, Independence, and son, Tom Joslyn; a large number of members of Stafford Post No. 222, American Legion, and many friends of Lt. Joslyn.

Source: Mason City Globe-Gazette, January 23, 1947 (photo included)