Loyce Edward Deen
Aviation Machinist Mate 2nd Class, USNR
Dean was a gunner on a TBM Avenger.
"Burial at sea"
On November 5, 1944, Deen's squadron participated in a raid on Manila where his plane was hit multiple times by anti-aircraft fire while attacking a Japanese cruiser. Deen was killed.
The Avenger's pilot, Lt Robert Cosgrove, managed to return to his carrier, the *USS Essex*.
The pilot Lt Robert Cosgrove is giving a thumbs down to shipmates rushing to assist him. It was decided the aircraft was too badly damaged to repair. AMM2c Deen was in his coffin. His personal affects were recovered from his body. His fingerprints were taken. Funeral detail was called for all available hands to muster on the fantail of the flight deck. A shroud was wrapped around Deen. The ships captain said a few words and the coffin with Deen at his duty station is rolled off the deck as a bugler played taps.
Both Deen and the plane had been shot up so badly that it was decided to leave him in it. It is the only time in U.S. Navy history (and probably U.S. military history) that an aviator was buried in his aircraft after being killed in action.
In the picture above and around the fifty second mark of the video is Lt Cosgrove in flight suit, zipper open mid way with his hands behind his back. Lieutenant Cosgrove received the Navy Cross, three Distinguished Flying Crosses and eight Air Medals. He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery in 2005.
Remember them as we bear witness to the courage of all those who face danger to maintain our freedom.