Ventie B. Stewart, Jr.
WWII US Military
Radioman on Battleship USS Tennessee

He survived Pearl Harbor, and then served on two oceans during the conflict. Ventie was aboard the USS Tennessee (BB-43) when the Japanese attacked, and was serving as a third class petty officer. As senior man on the bridge that morning, he ordered everyone off the bridge, perhaps saving all their lives. The Tennessee was hit by bombs and on fire. This son of a druggist was born in Castor, Louisiana. Bryan went to a business college and served in the Civilian Conservation Corps. He volunteered for the U.S. Navy on August 9, 1940. After Pearl Harbor, he also saw action in the Battle of the Coral Sea and the Battle of Midway. Bryan was transferred to a small aircraft carrier, USS Card (CV-11), which was tasked to hunt German submarines around Alaska and in the Atlantic. He was next transferred as a radarman to the USS Sandpiper (AVP-9), a seaplane tender. Bryan was discharged in August of 1946 in New Orleans, and then decided to pursue the rest of his education. He says if not for the GI Bill he would have stayed in the Navy. Thirsting for an education, Vinte earned his undergraduate degree in literature and history from Louisiana State University, and his masters from East Tennessee State University. He worked for East Baton Rouge Parish supervising student teachers, and also taught junior high and high school literature, history, and civics. He retired in the early 1980s.