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Paul D. Stroop
Vice Admiral Paul D. Stroop on Okinawa in 1957
Born 1904
Died 17 May 1995 (aged 90–91)
Place of birth Zanesville, Ohio
Place of death Coronado, California
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Navy
Years of service 1926–1965
Rank US-O9 insignia.svg Vice Admiral
Commands held USS Mackinac (AVP-13)
USS Croatan (CVE-25)
USS Princeton (CV-37)
USS Essex (CV-9)
Naval Ordnance Test Station, China Lake
Taiwan Patrol Force
Bureau of Naval Weapons
Naval Air Force, Pacific Fleet
Battles/wars World War II
Korean War
Awards Legion of Merit (2)

Vice Admiral Paul D. Stroop (1904 – 17 May 1995) was an officer of the United States Navy and a Naval Aviator. He held numerous high-ranking staff positions in aviation from the 1930s onward, including World War II service on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations. During the late 1940s and early 1950s, he held various sea commands. From 1959 to 1962, he oversaw the development of the Navy's aerial weapons, including early guided missiles, as Chief of the Bureau of Naval Weapons. During the later 1960s, he commanded Naval air forces in the Pacific.


Early life and career

Stroop was born in Zanesville, Ohio, but grew up in Mobile, Alabama.[1] He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1926, then spent the next two years on board the battleship Arkansas (BB-33). In 1928, he served as a member of U.S. gymnastic team at the Olympic Games in Amsterdam.

Naval aviation assignments

From 1928 to 1929, Stroop received flight training at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida, and in 1929 received his wings as a Naval Aviator. His first aviation assignment was with Torpedo Squadron 9, based at NAS Norfolk, Virginia. In 1932 he was transferred to Patrol Squadron 10, also based at Norfolk.

From 1932 to 1934, he undertook postgraduate work at the Naval Academy. After completing his studies, he returned to Fleet assignments. He served from 1934 to 1936 with Bombing Squadron 5, aboard the carrier Ranger (CV-4). From 1936 to 1937, he was Senior Aviator aboard the cruiser Portland (CA-33). In 1937, Stroop gained his first experience in the Naval Aviation material establishment when he was assigned to the Navy's Bureau of Aeronautics (BuAer). He left BuAer in 1940 to join the staff of Admiral Aubrey Fitch, commander of Patrol Wing 2, based at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In 1940, Stroop became Flag Officer and Tactical Officer of Carrier Division 1 at San Diego.

World War II

After the United States entry into World War II, Stroop was transferred to Pearl Harbor. In 1942, he joined the staff of the Carrier Task Force, aboard Lexington (CV-2) at Pearl Harbor. From 1942 to 1943, he served as Planning Officer to the Senior Naval Commander, Air Force, South Pacific.

He next gained his own command, serving from 1943 to 1944 as Commanding Officer of the seaplane tender USS Mackinac (AVP-13). Stroop spent the last months of the war in Washington, D.C., serving from 1944 to 1945 in the Navy Department as Aviation Plans Officer on the Staff of Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, the Chief of Naval Operations and Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet. In this capacity, Stroop attended the Yalta, Quebec, and Potsdam Conferences, later making a trip around the world to inform commands of outcome of the Yalta Conference.

Post-war activities

In 1945, Stroop left the Navy Department to become Commanding Officer of the escort carrier Croatan (CVE-25). He served as Fleet Aviation Officer (later Chief of Staff, Operations), in the Fifth Fleet, based at Yokosuka, Japan, from 1945 to 1946, and then as Aviation Officer (later Assistant Chief of Staff) Operations to the Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT), at Pearl Harbor, in 1946–1948.

From 1948 to 1950, Stroop served as Executive Officer at the Navy's General Line School in Monterey, California, then again took up his own studies as a student at the National War College at Washington, D.C., in 1950–1951.

In 1951, Stroop became Commanding Officer of the carrier Princeton (CV-37) in the Sea of Japan during the Korean War.[1] Then, in 1952, he assumed command of the Essex (CV-9), and was promoted to rear admiral.[1] In 1953, he left the Essex to become Commanding Officer of the Naval Ordnance Test Station, China Lake, California.

From 1953 to 1955, he was Senior Member of the Weapons Systems Evaluation Group, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Navy Department, Washington. From 1955 to 1957, he served as Deputy Chief at the Bureau of Ordnance (BuOrd).

From 1957 to 1958, he was Commanding Officer of the Taiwan Patrol Force based at Okinawa, Japan. From 1959 to 1962 he was Chief of the Bureau of Naval Weapons.

Stroop served from 1962 to 1965 as Commanding Officer of the Naval Air Force, Pacific Fleet (COMNAVAIRPAC), and as Commanding Officer, First Fleet, Air PAC, with the rank of vice admiral.[1]

He retired in 1965. After his retirement to the San Diego area, he was a consultant to Ryan Aeronautical and Teledyne Ryan of San Diego until 1992.[1]

Stroop died on at the Coronado Hospital in Coronado, California, on 17 May 1995, aged 90.[1]

Personal life

Stroop was married to Esther Holscher Stroop from 1926 until her death in 1982. He was survived by his second wife, Kay Roeder Stroop; his two sons, two daughters, three stepdaughters, a stepson, 13 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>J. Michael Elliott (May 21, 1995). "Paul Stroop, Commander of Navy's Pacific Air Force, Dead at 90". The New York Times. Retrieved 11 November 2010.

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Naval History & Heritage Command. It also contains public-domain information collected from the Naval War College, an institution of the United States government.

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