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William Adrian Bias Davenport

West Virginia
Veterans Memorial


William Adrian Bias Davenport

William Adrian Bias Davenport was born on August 8, 1915, in East Bank, West Virginia, to William E. and Belva Bias Davenport. He attended Thomas Jefferson Junior High School, where he was a member of the Dramatic Club, and Charleston High School, from which he graduated in 1933.
William Davenport
William Davenport, high school picture, 1933.

Before enlisting in the Navy, he was a buyer and department store manager for Thomas, Field and Company in Charleston. After enlistment in June 1942, William received pre-flight instruction at Anacostia, DC, and in January 1943 was commissioned a pilot in Corpus Christi, Texas. On January 27, 1944, while stationed in Rhode Island, William married Elizabeth Simms Wentz in the Quonset Point Navy Chapel.

Telegram on death of William Davenport.
On May 20, 1944, Ensign William Davenport, the pilot of a Navy torpedo bomber, was on convoy duty in the Atlantic when he was killed in an airplane crash. Ensign Davenport was buried at sea with full military honors and is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing located at the East Coast Memorial at New York City. In August 1944 a memorial service for Ensign Davenport was held at the Randolph Street Baptist Church in Charleston, during which an organ was presented to the church by his parents in his honor.


West Virginia Archives and History welcomes any additional information that can be provided about these veterans, including photographs, family names, letters and other relevant personal history.

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