A short biography of William Lowndes Calhoun,
"Uncle Bill"

(13 July 1884 - 19 October 1963)
USNA (Fla.) 1906 (13/116)

Vice Admiral Calhoun was a good friend of Dad's during the war, ever since the incident with the Admiral's war room door. Calhoun held an important post in the Pacific war effort, so he must have been a competent officer or he'd have been replaced. But personally, he appears to have been more than a little eccentric! Senile, as Dad puts it. My reference says that Admiral Calhoun was "[t]he premier logistics commander of the war in the Pacific." When my father heard that description, his comment was "He must have had a cracker-jack staff!"

Since we're mainly interested in ADM Calhoun during WWII, I'll be brief on his career up to that time.

From the reference:
"Admiral Calhoun, after attending the advanced course at the Naval War college, in December 1939 became Commander Base Force, U.S. Fleet (changed to Base Force, Pacific Fleet, in February 1941), with additional duty from August 1941 as Commander Train Squadron Two. With the beginning of hostilities in the Pacific, he became Command Service Force Pacific Fleet in the rank of vice admiral and in which capacity he successfully directed, from Pearl Harbor, the entire logistics effort (except for aviation) in the war against Japan, including the revolutionary and crucial at-sea replenishment squadrons. In March 1945 Calhoun transferred to command the backwater south Pacific Area, the logistics of which he had personally established during the trying Guadalcanal campaign of late 1942. Relieved in October, he spent several months as Inspector General of the Navy and then General Inspector of the Western Sea Frontier, retiring in April 1946. He was advanced to full admiral in January 1954."

Oh, yes. Much later, about 1960, we found that our neighbor's brother (also an admiral) had known, or known of, Admiral Calhoun. ADM Beardall said that Calhoun also had the nickname of "Windy Bill." From Dad's descriptions, it fits!

Here's a mini-index to the Admiral Calhoun stories:

Famous American Admirals, by Clark G. Reynolds, Van Norstrand Reinhold Company, 1978. ISBN 0-442-26068-7
Hawaii Stories Index
Bill Innanen's Home Page
Bill Innanen's Guest Book