Skip to Content

Donald Stratton, Pearl Harbor survivor and USS Arizona crew member, dies at 97

Pearl Harbor death
Kent Nishimura/Getty Images via CNN
USS Arizona survivor, Donald Stratton, stands in front of the remembrance wall at the USS Arizona Memorial in 2014.

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii — Donald Stratton, a survivor of the USS Arizona, died February 15, according to a statement from the Pearl Harbor National Memorial.

He was 97, a tweet from USS Arizona said.

Stratton joined the Navy in 1940 after growing up in Nebraska. The USS Arizona was the first ship he joined, the statement from the National Memorial said.

He was a Seaman First Class when he was one of 334 crew members to survive the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by the Japanese, according to the USS Arizona tweet. The attack drew the country into World War II.

During the attack on Pearl Harbor, Stratton was with five other sailors in the burning forward mast when he was saved by a sailor from the USS Vestal who threw the group a line, according to the statement.

Stratton suffered burns to over 70% of his body while escaping and received a medical discharge in September 1942.

Ever determined to serve his country, the statement said, Stratton reenlisted in 1944, served out the war and was discharged, once again, in December of 1946 at the rank of Gunners Mate Second Class.

The flag over the USS Arizona Memorial will be flown at half staff in honor of his life and service, the statement said.

Article Topic Follows: US & World

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo



KVIA ABC 7 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content