Woodbury County

Comdr. Marvin P. Evenson




Former Sioux Cityan Wins Award for Rescuing Airmen from Ocean

Listed among the heroes of the south Pacific is the name of Comdr. Marvin P. Evenson, former Sioux City resident. Responsible for saving the lives of three men when the Liberator was forced down after the rest of the crew had bailed out while returning from a raid on Robaul November 11, Comdr. Evenson was awarded the sir medal by Maj. Gen. Nathan Twining, commander of aircraft in the Solomons.

He received the message that the men were afloat while in the control tower at the Munda field and immediately set out in a duck (German amphibian) to locate them. After about two hours, some 125 miles from his base, he spotted the men, landed his plane, and taxied up to the half collapsed craft.

One man had already side, and the other three were seriously wounded. The raft could no longer carry the weight of three men, and one was in the water while the other two held him fast to the raft. With some difficulty Comdr. Evenson managed to get the wounded men into the plane ordinarily built to carry only two men.

An unusually calm sea made it difficult to get the plane in the air again, but after taxing a half mile he managed to “bounce off a big wave” and returned safely to Munda.

A son of George N. Evenson, former vice president of Knapp and Spencer Company, Comdr. Evenson is a graduate of Central High School and lived here until 1922, when he received an appointment to Annapolis, graduating in 1926 with honors. After graduation he participated in the Nicaraguan campaign and the bandit uprisings in Shanghai and then returned to Pensacola, Fla. in 1929 where he received his wings.

George N. Evenson passed through Sioux City Monday en-route to the west coast where he will spend the Christmas holidays with his daughter-in-law and grandchildren.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, November 30, 1943