JOHN C. BREWTON
USS BREWTON (DE-1086) is named for Lieutenant John Cooke BREWTON, U.S. Navy. LT BREWTON, one of twin boys, was born in Mobile, Alabama to Henry E. and Carol Cooke BREWTON on 5 September 1943.
John BREWTON attended elementary and Junior High School in Mobile, entering Murphy High School in 1958. Before graduation in 1961 he had served as President of his Fraternity, Phi Sigma Chi, had written for the school newspaper, and was a Letter winner in track and cross country.
Now eighteen, he entered the University of Alabama in 1961. While there he continued his active pursuit of extracurricular activities. He joined the Debate Club, Delta Tau Delta Fraternity, and the Young Republican Club; John was a member of the Cross Country Track Team, and, for four years he was a Cheer Leader for the Crimson Tide Football Team. He graduated with the class of 1966.
John enlisted in the Naval Reserve in 1966. He was accepted as an Officer Candidate, receiving his commission as an Ensign in the U.S. Navy in April of 1967. John had been an avid skin diver in college, and this interest led him to volunteer for UDT and later for SEAL Team Training. In late 1969, following arduous training and a promotion, Lieutenant junior grade BREWTON was serving as Platoon Officer of a SEAL team, in combat against Communist forces in South Vietnam. On 24 November 1969 Lieutenant (jg) BREWTON led his platoon in fierce action against a numerically superior enemy force. Despite suffering painful arm and back wounds, he directed the disposition of his forces, and refused medical treatment for himself until all of his men had been tended. After receiving an additional wound, he continued to direct helicopter attacks against the enemy position from a forward vantage point.
After the action, Lieutenant (jg) BREWTON was evacuated to a Saigon field hospital for treatment. Despite a courageous fight for life, he succumbed to his wounds on 11 January 1970.
As a result of the action which led to his death, Lieutenant (jg) BREWTON was posthumously promoted to Lieutenant and awarded the Silver Star for "valiant leadership and courageous fighting spirit in the face of grave enemy opposition and serious personal injuries." He also earned the Bronze Star with one gold star and Combat "V"; the Purple Heart with one gold star; the Combat Action Ribbon; the Vietnam Service Ribbon with three bronze stars, and; the National Defense Service Medal. In addition, Lieutenant BREWTON was awarded the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.