Date of Award

Spring 5-2016

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Dr. Allan R. Millett

Second Advisor

Dr. Guenter Bischof

Third Advisor

Dr. Robert Dupont


This study reveals how the Pacific war changed at Coral Sea and Midway due to a little known but important cadre of sailors on USS Yorktown (CV5). Those US victories resulted from not only clever code breakers and courageous airmen but equally from the determined Damage Control (DC) crews aboard Yorktown. DC crews were the ship’s first responders. They fought fires, kept power and propulsion operable, controlled the ship’s stability, and patched her flight deck to keep aircraft flying. DC teams saved Yorktown multiple times, and their story is memorable for their contributions at Coral Sea and Midway. Without DC efforts, CV5 would not have participated in the battle of Midway. Without Yorktown, the commitment of only two American carriers (with one being virtually inexperienced) against four Japanese carriers with their skilled airmen would have yielded disaster for the United States at Midway instead of victory.


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