Ekstam, Dwight Dale, 2ndLt

Fallen
 
 Service Photo 
 Service Details
193 kb
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Last Rank
Second Lieutenant
Last Primary MOS
7598-Basic Fixed-Wing Pilot
Last MOSGroup
Pilots/Naval Flight Officers
Primary Unit
1943-1944, 7598, VMB-423
Service Years
1942 - 1944
Official/Unofficial USMC Certificates
Golden Dragon Certificate
Shellback Certificate

Second Lieutenant

 
 

 Last Photo 
 Personal Details 

203 kb

Home State
Illinois
Illinois
Year of Birth
1922
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by MGySgt Scott Welch-Deceased to remember Marine 2ndLt Dwight Dale Ekstam.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Moline, Illinois
Last Address
Moline, Illinois

Casualty Date
Apr 21, 1944
 
Cause
Non Hostile- Died Other Causes
Reason
Air Loss, Crash - Land
Location
Vanuatu
Conflict
World War II
Location of Interment
Rock Island Confederate Cemetery - Rock Island, Illinois
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Plot: Section MA Site 59

 Official Badges 


 Unofficial Badges 

Order of the Golden Dragon Shellback


 Military Association Memberships
World War II Fallen
  1944, World War II Fallen [Verified]

 Photo Album   (More...


 Ribbon Bar

Pilot Wings
Rifle Sharpshooter (Pre 1959)USMC Basic Qualification Badge

 
 Unit Assignments
MATSG-22, NAS Corpus Christi, TXVMB-423
  1942-1942, 7599, MATSG-22, NAS Corpus Christi, TX
  1943-1944, 7598, VMB-423
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1943-1944 Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Northern Solomon Islands Campaign (1943-44)
 Colleges Attended
Augustana College, Rock Island Illinois
  1940-1942, Augustana College, Rock Island Illinois
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Dwight Ekstam was born and raised in Illinois; he was a track star and notable swimmer at Moline High School when he graduated (a year ahead) in 1940. Ekstam attended Augustana College for two years before joining the Navy as an ensign. He qualified as a naval aviator at Corpus Christi, but was destined to wear the forest green Marine uniform. He flew side by side with Lally Lallathin as co-pilot. Ekstam's younger brother, Dean Ekstam, was among the first to make serious attempts to locate the crash site, even making two trips to Vanatu. He died in 2007, knowing the wreck was accessible, but before witnessing the return of his brother's remains. The Ekstam family became involved in the recovery of the crew; Dean's DNA sample was used to confirm Dwight Ekstam's remains. Dale Ekstam is memorialized with the crew at Arlington National Cemetery, and individually at Rock Island National Cemetery.

   
Comments/Citation
This PBJ1-D in the collection of the National Naval Aviation Museum is painted in the livery of BuNo 35087 - Laverne Lallathin's aircraft. Photo source.
This PBJ1-D in the collection of the National Naval Aviation Museum is painted in the livery of BuNo 35087 Laverne Lallathin's aircraft.

Crew Members:
1st Lt. Laverne A. Lallathin;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on May 7, 2012
2nd Lt. Dwight D. Ekstam;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on March 28, 2012
2nd Lt. Walter B. Vincent, Jr.;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on March 6, 2012
Tech. Sgt. James A. Sisney;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on May 9, 2012
Cpl. Wayne R. Erickson;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on March 7, 2012
Cpl. John D. Yeager;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on March 14, 2012
Pfc. John A. Donovan;
            Lost April 22, 1944 ~ Accounted for on March 16, 2012

 
Location of crash:  Espiritu Santo is the largest island in the nation of Vanuatu, with an area of 1,527.2 sq mi. It belongs to the archipelago of the New Hebrides in the Pacific region of Melanesia. It is in the Sanma Province of Vanuatu.  Vanuatu's highest peak is the 6165 foot Mount Tabwemasana in west-central Espiritu Santo.
   
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