Victor J. Melito, Huntington, N.Y.


Victor J. Melito, U.S. Navy and WWII veteran

South Ozone Park, NY

My grandfather, Victor, enlisted as a volunteer in the U.S. Navy in March 1942. As a plasterer by trade, he was exactly what the Navy was looking for when they stood up the newly formed Naval Construction Battalions, or Seabees. He first shipped out for Boot Camp at Great Lakes, Ill. After which, he was assigned to the Davisville Seabee base in the state of Rhode Island. He would be stationed here until 1945. During this time he married my grandmother, Margaret. She would come to live in off-base housing with him during his time at Davisville. Eventually his time at the base would come to an end when he received orders for overseas duty. My grandmother would go home to Queens, N.Y., to stay with family and give birth to my dad Kenneth in 1945. Kenneth would later serve as a sailor in the Vietnam War aboard USS Hancock CVA-19. Victor's orders would take him to duty in the Pacific Theater. He was shipped to Marpi Point on the island of Saipan. While on the island, he was assigned to Construction Battalion Maintenance Unit 616. He and his unit were serving there when hostilities ended in 1945. He would later be discharged in December 1945 at PSC Lido Beach, N.Y., and returned home to start his life with his wife Margaret and Kenneth, who he had only seen once, briefly, before shipping out to the Pacific. My grandfather passed away as a proud WWII veteran on 09 July 1968.

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