Adm. Husband E. Kimmel, Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Fleet when Pearl Harbor was attacked on Dec. 7, 1941, has ties to Cape Girardeau County. His father, Manning M. Kimmel, was born in Apple Creek, Mo. (near modern-day Old Appleton in Perry County) in 1832. He received an appointment to the United States Military Academy, graduating with the Class of 1857.
2nd Lt. Kimmel served with the 2nd Cavalry during the Comanche Wars before the Civil War. He fought during the First Battle of Bull Run and was recognized for gallant conduct, but afterwards resigned his commission. Commissioned a major in the Confederate Army, Kimmel served on the staffs of generals Benjamin McCulloch, Earl Van Dorn, and John B. Magruder, as well as a brief tenure as the Confederacy's adjutant general in Missouri. Manning, one of only four West Point graduates to fight for both sides during the Civil War, lived in Cape Girardeau after the war, but moved to Kentucky when his son Husband was born.
Husband Kimmel (U.S. Naval Academy, Class of 1904) sailed with the Great White Fleet and was wounded during the Occupation of Veracruz before serving as a gunnery officer during the First World War. He also served as an aide to Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Franklin D. Roosevelt.
President Roosevelt appointed Adm. Chester W. Nimitz to replace Kimmel, who retires in 1942.
Image from Southeast Missourian Dec. 18, 1941 edition