Comrade Carlos Gonsalves
TOMB OF UNKNOWN SAILOR
Although a highly decorated Army retiree, one of our newest members, Carlos Gonsalves, had a big impact on the Navy. While working as a police officer in Bremerton, he spent some of his spare time checking out the local cemetery. He was fascinated by it and found the grave of a medal of honor winner. He also found a large area with graves with no identification.
He did some research and found that the graves were filled with Navy men from World War II. They had been crewmembers of the aircraft carrier Saratoga. The ship had been heavily damaged in the battle of Coral Sea and towed back to Bremerton. As it was being repaired, a number of bodies were found in one compartment. The bodies were never identified.
As it was wartime, they were simply buried and forgotten until Carlos did his research. He and another Army buddy then started a campaign to get proper recognition for the sailors. It took awhile but ultimately, there was a major ceremony involving the Secretary of the Navy. According to Carlos, that burial site in Bremerton is now the only national Tomb of Unknown Sailors in this country. The event received national media attention.