USS Akron Crash – Officers and Crew

A list of the officers, crew, and guests aboard USS Akron when the ship crashed at sea April 3-4, 1933.  Of the 76 men aboard Akron, only three survived the crash; their names appear in blue.

Six of the men killed in the wreck of the Akron had survived the crash of USS Shenandoah in 1925.

Akron Executive Officer Herbert V. Wiley was in command of USS Macon when the Macon crashed at sea north of San Francisco on February 12, 1935.


Rear Admiral William A. Moffett

Rear Admiral William A. Moffett

Cdr. Frank C. McCord, Commanding
Lt. Cdr. Herbert V. Wiley, Executive Officer
Lt. Cdr. Harold E. McClellan
Lt. George Calnan
Lt. Herbert M. Wescoat
Lt. Richard F. Cross, Jr.
Lt. (jg) Hammond J. Dugan
Lt. (jg) Charles F. Miller
Lt. (jg) Morgan Redfield
Lt. (jg) Wilfred Bushnell
Lt. (jg) Cyrus Clendening
Chief Machinist George C. Walsh


RAdm. William A. Moffett, Chief of the U.S. Navy Bureau of Aeronautics
Cdr. Fred T. Berry, CO NAS Lakehurst/CO Rigid Airship Training & Experimental Squadron
Cdr. Harry B. Cecil (Aide to Rear Admiral Moffett)
Lt. Joseph H. Severyns
Lt. (jg) Robert E. Sayre
Lt. (jg) Charles H. Calloway
Col. Alfred F. Masury, U.S. Army Reserve (V.P., Mack Truck Co.)

Uss Akron Survivors Moody Erwin (left), Herbert V. Wiley (center), Richard Deal (right)

USS Akron Survivors Moody Erwin (left), Herbert V. Wiley (center), Richard Deal (right)


Anderson, Victor C. (AMM3C | AVN. MACH. MATE 3D)
Angeles, Maximo (Matt1c | Mess Attend. 1st)
Arthur, Wellington K. (ACMM | Avn. Chf. Mach. Mate)
Austin, Wilton G. (BM2c | Boatswain’s Mate 2d)
Ballard, Henry A. (BM2c | Boatswain’s Mate 2d) [USS Shenandoah Survivor] Barnhart, Bennie, (Cox | Coxswain)
Baughman, Harold R. (F3c | Fireman 3d)
Boelsen, Peter (AMM2c | Avn. Mach. Mate 2d)
Boswell, Henry L. (CBM | Chief Boatswain’s Mate) [USS Shenandoah Survivor] Carlson, Arthur E. (CBM | Chief Boatswain’s Mate) [USS Shenandoah Survivor] Carr, Stewart S. (CEM | Chief Electricians Mate)
Cooper, Fred (AMM2c | Avn. Mach. Mate 2d)
Copeland, Robert W. (CRM | Chief Radioman)
Cridlin, Stanley L. (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d)
Deal, Richard E. (CBM | Chief Boatswain’s Mate)
Dean, Carl C. (CBM | Chief Boatswain’s Mate)
Duncan, Lester G. (F3c | Fireman 3d)
Engler, Ralph (Cox | Coxswain)
Erwin, Moody E. (AM2c | Aviation Metalsmith 2d)
Eschette, Horace P. (SC1c | Ships Cook 1st)
Fahey, Lawrence E. (AMM2c | Avn. Mach. Mate 2d)
Fennessy, Edward (ACOM | Aviation Chief Ordnanceman)
Fink, Elmer E. CTM
Graves, Hilbert N. (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d)
Hackett, Earl P. (CAerog | Chief Aerographer)
Hill, William T. (PhM1c | Pharmacist’s Mate 1st)
Hoover, Paul S. (SC3c | Ships Cook3d)
Hulting, Lewis O. (Cox | Coxswain)
Jandick, Paul A. (CBM | Chief Boatswain’s Mate)
Johnson, Rufus B. (BM2c | Boatswain’s Mate 2d)
Latham, W.R. (CBM | Chief Boatswain’s Mate)
Lamkin, H.R. (Sea1c | Seaman First Class)
Liles, Leon D. (CAerog | Chief Aerographer)
Lipke, Donald H. (AMM1c | Avn. Mach. Mate 1st);
Magnuson, Fridolf R. (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d)
McLellan, Benjamin C. (AMM2c | Avn. Mach. Mate 2d)
Molen, Herschel L RM1c; Oronez, Mario (Matt1c | Mess Attend. 1st)
Quernheim, August C. (ACMM | Avn. Chf. Mach. Mate) [USS Shenandoah Survivor] Rader, Leonard G. (Cox | Coxswain)
Russell, William A. (ACMM | Avn. Chf. Mach. Mate) [USS Shenandoah Survivor] Rutan, Lucius W. (ACMM | Avn. Chf. Mach. Mate)
Rytell, John (AMM1c | Avn. Mach. Mate 1st)
Shauger, Paul R. (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d);
Shevlowitz, Joseph (ACMM | Avn. Chf. Mach. Mate) [USS Shenandoah Survivor] Slayton, Douglas C. (RM3c | Radioman 3d)
Starr, Fred W. (Sea1c | Seaman First Class)
Stine, Ralph C. (QM1c | Quartermaster 1st)
Swidersky, Tony F. (Cox | Coxswain)
Thigpen, Benjamin J.,Jr. (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d)
Tomes, Gerald L. (F3c | Fireman 3d)
Ulrich, Oliver (BM2c | Boatswain’s Mate 2d)
Walck, Lewis T.(AMM2c | Avn. Mach. Mate 2d)
Weeks, John L (Sea2c | Seaman Second Class)
Wind, Nobart (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d)
Zanetti, Joseph (AMM3c | Avn. Mach. Mate 3d)
Zimkus, Joseph J. (BM1c | Boatswain’s Mate 1st).

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beverly hetzel
beverly hetzel

my uncle, leonard rader was not on your enlisted men list

Betty Haskins
Betty Haskins

He was on the enlisted list. My mother was married to him when the Akron went down.

John Walck
John Walck

My father’s brother was Lewis T. Walck (Walck, Lewis T.(AMM2c | Avn. Mach. Mate 2d)) who was aboard the night the Akron went down. My father told me that Lewis went in place of someone who’s wife was having a baby and was not supposed to be on the flight.… Read more »


my great, great uncle Mark Milligan was on the Akron crew but was not on this flight. his wife was pregnant at the time but did not give birth until months later. he went on to fly with the Macon but died of a heart attack before that crashed.

Cheryl Krause
Cheryl Krause

Does anyone have information about crew member Ralph C Stein? He was my grandfather and we have no information on him


My Grand Uncle was Peter Boelson, Avn. Mech. Mate 2c. I have 1 photo of him in his Navy uniform. Such a tragic loss of so many young lives.

Jill Rudnitski
Jill Rudnitski

My great-granduncle was AMM3 Hilbert Graves. My mom and I are very interested in genealogy, and we have followed stories about the USS Akron. We have no photos of Hilbert (unless he is in one of the group photos online.) i would love to see any of the scrapbooks or… Read more »

Michael Rutan Heningham
Michael Rutan Heningham

My great uncle, brother of my paternal grandfather was Avn.Chf.Mach.Mate Lucius Washburn Rutan. During WW1, he served on the U.S.S. Potapsco as Chief Electrician. According to accounts, he survived the crash of the Akron, and was with one of the survivors holding on to one of the large fuel containers… Read more »

Isabella bryant
Isabella bryant

hi it is Isabella he was my 4 times grand father and every one who emailed you are relited to me.

Kathy Chang
Kathy Chang

Hi, I’m writing about the John Lust story. My mother, née Anna Tarnawski, was married to Victor Carl Anderson, who died on the Akron. My mother had told us that he was not supposed to be on the ship that night and took the place of another shipmate. Does anyone… Read more »

Rick Zitarosa
Rick Zitarosa

Anderson needed one more flight to be fully qualified for duty as an Engineer and so he took the place of Aviation Machinist’s Mate Sidney Hooper. Hooper later survived the crash of the AKRON’s sister ship USS MACON (ZRS5) and ended finishing his career in Navy Lighter Than Air flying… Read more »

John Dugan
John Dugan

Red Dugan – or Hammond Dugan as listed was my grandfather. It is my understanding he was the navigator. From what Red’s brother (my great uncle) explained to me – Red was not averse to risk. The story I heard was that when he was first given command of the… Read more »


My gg Uncle (Mark Milligan) flew over his hometown near Princess Anne Maryland and waved to the townspeople below and it was reported in the local paper. I wonder if it was the same flight>