Thomas Ashton, Jr.

(July 23, 1943) -- Petty Officer Thomas Edward Ashton Jr., electrician’s mate 3/c, on submarine duty was reported missing in action April 22, 1943.

The young sailor was known by his parents,  Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Ashton Sr., who formerly lived on Cathedral Avenue, to have been aboard the submarine Triton, which was reported by the Navy on July 22 as having been sunk in the Pacific with 11 Jap ships to its credit.

He attended St. Mary's elementary school. He was an assistant scout master of troop 12 at St. Mary's Church.

Tom has been engaged to Miss Olive Shaefer for the past year. He has three sisters, Alice and Melina who live in Nutley, and Mrs. Eileen Rudowsky.

(April 30, 1943) -- The parents of Thomas Edward Ashton Jr., were notified Thursday that their son, an electrician's mate 3c, on submarine duty was missing at sea. Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Ashton Sr., who formerly lived on Cathedral avenue, have recently moved to E. Glen Avenue in Ridgewood.
Tom Ashton enlisted in the Navy in February 1942. After two and a half months of preliminary training at New London, he was sent to the Navy Electrical Engineering School.

His military education included Submarine; Battery & Gyro; Electrical Theory; Electrical Laboratory; Mathematics; tool instruction; General Instruction; Wiring Shop.

His assignments and geographical locations included: N.R.S., N.Y.; NavTraSta - Newport, R.I.; US Nav Tra Sch - Detroit, Mich.; Submarine Sch - New London, Conn.; USS Guardfish (Flag CSD 82); USS Triton.

Upon completion of his training he was assigned to a submarine as an electrician's mate.

Tom was working for the plant department of the New Jersey Bell Telephone Company at the time of his enlistment in the Navy. He attended St. Mary's elementary school, and St. Peter's and St. Mary's Rutherford high schools, where he played football and basketball.

A fine athlete, Tom also played golf, went bowling, and belonged to the Nutley Chess Club. He was an assistant scout master of troop 12 at St. Mary's Church.
Tom has been engaged to Miss Olive Shaefer for the past year. He has three sisters, Alice and Melina who live in Nutley, and Mrs. Eileen Ruowsky.


Carlyle Hayden Malmstrom

(April 23, 1943) -- Mrs. Hilda Malmstrom, a war bride, was notified by the War Department Wednesday morning that her husband Staff Sgt. Carlyle Hayden Malmstrom had been killed in action in North Africa on April 6. The Malmstroms were married in July 1941, at Florence, S.C.

His parents, Mr. and Mrs. C. P. Malmstrom, of Cathedral avenue, are of the opinion he was killed in reconnaissance work.

His wife, a Nutley girl, is the former Miss Hilda Fillipone.

He attended Rutgers University for two years, where he studied business administration.

The Malmstroms have another son, George, 17, who is a student at Clifton High school. 

More information.

From The Nutley Sun
April 23, 1943: Reconnaissance Man Killed
In Action In North Africa


Dominic Anthony Cassera

(April 30, 1943) -- A solemn mass of requiem will be held tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock at the Holy Family Church for Dominic Anthony Cassera who was killed in an airplane crash last Tuesday (April 20) near Benton, Missouri. An aviation cadet also died in the crash.

Dominic, the son of Anthony Cassera of Glendale street, was a civilian instructor of army aviators at Harris Field, Mo. He had been promised a job as an airline pilot at the end of the war.

Aviation had always been Dominic's avocation. He had flown many planes of his own, most of which he had bought as wrecks and converted into workable mechanisms. His family said that he had never been in an accident before.

Dominic, who was 20 years old, had had 700 hours in the air up to the time of his death. He was the youngest instructor at Harris Field where he had been stationed for the past four months. He had previously taken a refresher course in New York.

Prior to entering army employ, he had been a mechanic at Lincoln Airport. He attended Nutley High school and Essex County Vocational where he first took up the study of aviation. As a boy he constructed many types of model planes.

From The Nutley Sun
April 30, 1943
Local Youth Was Civilian Flying
Instructor At Army Air Base


Pervis Robison Jr.

Nutley resident Pervis Robison Jr. was one of 129 servicemen killed on April 10, 1963, when U.S.S. Thresher, a new class of submarine sank during sea trials about 200 miles off the coast of Cape Cod, Mass.

Robison, who had attended Nutley schools all his life, had been a track star at Nutley High School where he was graduated in 1960.

 He is survived by his parents, Margaret and Pervis Robison, of Passaic Avenue.


40th Anniversary Memorial Service 

 By Anthony Buccino 

 NUTLEY, N.J. -- A memorial service on the 40th anniversary of the loss of U.S.S. Thresher and Seaman Pervis Robison was held at the Robison/Thresher monument, in front of Town Hall, at 1 p.m. on April 10, 2003.

 Mayor Peter C. Scarpelli, who knew and worked with ''our hometown son'' Pervis, conducted the memorial.

 When asked later about nicknames, Robison family friend Adrian Malloy said that Pervis' father was known as 'big duck' and the sailor was called 'little duck' by his father's friends.

 And 'duck' by his friends, added Mayor Scarpelli.

 Commander Robert W. Archer, executive officer Naval Weapons Station, Earle, Colts Neck, represented the U.S. Navy, along with a Naval Honor Guard.

Pervis Robison, Jr. memorial, Nutley, N.J.
 Archer, who joined the Navy several years after the Thresher accident has served on seven subs in his 35-year career. He said that many of the improvements on later subs were the result of the sacrifice made by the seamen aboard the Thresher.

 ''When I was a young seaman, I wore the same uniform and I did the very same things that Seaman Pervis Robison did. I entered the submarine service in 1968 -- five years after the tragic loss of the Thresher, I was a seaman, I was young, I was indestructible -- much like I imagine Seaman Pervis Robison was,'' Archer said.

 ''To this day, I remember the excitement and the adventure that the submarine force provided me, and the intense pride I felt knowing I was a member of an exclusive group of people that had passed many tests and were found fit for duty below the sea -- supporting and defending the liberties and freedoms that the people of our great nation enjoy.

 ''We were the ones walking softly and silently and carrying the big sticks that deterred those that might want to threaten our way of life and our very freedoms.

 ''Only a few men are ever selected to become submariners. It takes a rare breed to ride that steel tube out to sea and challenge Mother Nature herself by submerging below the ocean.

 ''I can assure you that for every time a submariner goes down, the elements resist you coming back up, it's like you become one with the ocean itself, that it wants to keep you there.

 ''In the case of Thresher, the ocean won its way, and those braves souls of Thresher are part of the ocean forever.

 ''I honor his memory. I honor his bravery and his spirit of adventure. And I thank him for his service because had it not been for the tragic loss of the Thresher, many of the improvements seen in the modern day submarines would not have come about...

 ''My fellow submariners and I have lived the benefit of the sacrifice of seaman Pervis' life. His life was ... lived to mark lasting improvements for all time for all submariners.

 ''Seaman Robison, on behalf all submariners who followed behind you, I salute you. You are our shipmate, our brother, our friend.''

 Reverend Robert C. Cole, pastor of First Baptist Church of Nutley, gave the invocation, and, later, the benediction.

 A wreath was placed at the Robison/Thresher monument by township commissioners Joanne Cocchiola-Oliver and Mauro Tucci.

 Taps was played by Dennis McPartland, assistant band director at Nutley high school.

 On hand for the memorial were about 100 Nutley residents and veterans. Also present was Mary Ann Fitton, spouse of Nutley son Lt. Frank Jannarone, who was killed in a bomber crash on June 12, 1958.

More information. 


George Stanford

George J. Stanford died of a heart attack on April 1, 1943, while on a short leave at home. He was the athletic director at the Nutley High School for 23 years before entering the army as a 2nd lieutenant. A memorial plaque in his honor is located at the Park Oval beneath the flag stand.

More information.