THE RARE BREED
Recognizing Area Veterans Of World War II
Nathan Linton In 10 Battles
Aboard Heavy Cruiser Chester
By EDITH LINTON
Nathan and Edith Linton, at 404 Lucas Avenue, Palacios, in February 1942
I am writing this for my husband, Nathan, about his World War II years, as he is very, very ill. I am his wife, Edith, and I know all about the war years, as we married on May 31, 1939 when he came home on leave to Palacios.
Nathan "D" Linton was born on June 23, 1918 at LaWard to Willie and Addie Joines Linton. His parents moved to Palacios in 1937. His mother died in 1973 and his father lived there, on Lucas Avenue, until his death in 1986. Nathan always considered Palacios his hometown during the war years. He graduated from Palacios High School in May 1935 and joined the U. S. Navy on July 9, 1936 at Houston.
Nathan spent over 20 years on active duty in the Navy. He retired on Jan. 21, 1957 and then was in the inactive reserve until Aug. 1, 1966, having completed 30 years and 21 days.
He was attending school in Washington, D.C. when the war broke out on Dec. 7, 1941. After finishing school the next February, he went back to his ship, the USS. Chester, a heavy cruiser, and spent all of the war years on the ship.
The USS. Chester received 11 battle stars for World War II service. Nathan participated in 10 of those battles. Some of them were: Coral Sea, Capture and Defense of Guadalcanal, Gilbert Islands Operation, Iwo Jima Operation, Okinawa, and the Third Fleet Operation of Japan.
Nathan did not get to come home on leave to Palacios until January 1946 as the ship was assigned to the task force anchored in the harbor of Ominato, KO, Japan, the site of a major Japanese naval base.
For his service during the war, Nathan received the following awards: American Campaign Medal, American Defense Medal with fleet clasp, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with two Silver Stars and one Bronze Star, Navy Occupation Medal, Navy Unit Commendation Ribbon, United Nations Service Medal, World War II Victory Medal, Philippine Liberation Ribbon with one Star, and a Philippine Presidential Unit Citation.
For his service to our country when he retired, he was also awarded the Navy Good Conduct Medal with four Bronze Stars.
During the Korean War, Nathan served aboard the U.S.S. Princeton. When he was discharged from active duty in 1957 at the rank of FTGC, he was an instructor at the U. S. Navy Receiving Station in Washington, D.C.
In 1959, we moved back to Palacios. Nathan taught math at Palacios High School and later taught math at Palacios Junior High School. He retired from teaching in May 1983.
We have three children: Gerald, a retired coach, teacher, principal and now a rancher at Axtell, Tx.; Ronald, a professional truck driver and a rancher at Axtell; and Sandra Linton Dulling, an advanced math teacher at a Garland, Tx. high school. We have six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
We now own a small ranch and raise registered Hereford cattle in the little community of Elk, near Axtell, which is near Waco. We moved here in August 1983, but Palacios still seems like home. We get the Palacios Beacon and we read it from page to page.
P.S.: Nathan had an older brother, Warrant Officer (ret.) K. C. Linton. He graduated from Palacios High School in May 1928. He and Nathan served aboard the U.S.S. Chester at the same time during the war years. He, too, retired from the Navy after serving 20 years. He passed away in May 1961.
Mr. Linton died in March 2005 at the age of 86.
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