A Dawn Like Thunder
Tornado Squadron EightA Dawn Like ThunderRobert J. MrazekWorld War II Navy PilotsBattle of Midway

Ensign James Hill Cook (191?-1942)

KIA, August 22, 1942, USS Saratoga

James Hill Cook was born and raised in tiny Grand Cane, Louisiana.  His father was a successful cotton farmer.  James Hill’s mother, Jimmie Lee Talbert Cook, was very popular with the local children, often providing them with a summer concoction of “purple cows,” a drink made from grapes, milk, and sugar. 


After graduating from Grand Cane High School in 1935, James Hill attended Louisiana Poly Tech in Rustin.  Shortly before entering the Navy as a pilot trainee, he met his future wife Marjorie.  They were married in 1942, two months before Torpedo Squadron Eight left for the Pacific.  According to his roommate and best friend, Corwin “Smiley” Morgan, Cook cherished her more than anything in his life.


James Hill Cook was killed on August 22, 1942, while taking off on a combat mission from the deck of the USS Saratoga

A young James pictured here with his two sisters.


entire site copyright Robert J. Mrazek 2008