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South Weymouth in Norfolk County, Massachusetts — The American Northeast (New England)
 

History of NAS South Weymouth

Shea Field Memorial Grove

 
 
History of NAS South Weymouth Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Don Morfe, May 26, 2013
1. History of NAS South Weymouth Marker
Inscription.  Naval Air Station South Weymouth was a U.S. Navy installation from 1942 to 1997. It was established as a blimp base during the Second World War. Later, during the post-war era, NAS South Weymouth hosted a changing variety of regular Navy, Navy Reserve and Marine Corps Reserve units.

Originally, NAS South Weymouth had two enormous blimp hangers, one steel-framed and the other almost entirely made of wool. These hangers were among the largest structures in the world at that time.

On June 30th, 1949 NAS South Weymouth was closed and re-designated an auxiliary landing facility. The wooden blimp hanger was torn down and three paved runways were built between 1951 and 1953 so the base could take over the Navy and Marine Corps Reserve operations from nearby NAS Squantum, located in Quincy. NAS South Weymouth was reopened as part of the Naval Air Reserve Training Command on December 4th, 1953. All the Navy and Marine Corps reserve units that had been based at NAS Squantum were transferred to NAS South Weymouth. On October 14th, 1954 the name “Shea Field” was transferred from former NAS Squantum to the airfield at NAS
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South Weymouth to perpetuate the memory of Navy Commander John J. Shea, a local naval officer who was killed in action when the aircraft carrier USS Wasp was sunk off the Solomon Islands by a Japanese submarine on September 15th, 1942. NAS “SOWEY” was primarily a reserve training base after it was reopened, from December 1953 through September 1997. The Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC) of 1993 directed NAS South Weymouth to be closed. The airfield was closed on September 30th, 1996. The Base itself was vacated by the Navy on September 30th, 1997.

Grove and A-4 maintained by members of the Association of Naval Aviation Patriot Squadron
 
Erected by Association of Naval Aviation Patriot Squadron.
 
Topics. This memorial is listed in this topic list: War, World II. A significant historical month for this entry is June 1861.
 
Location. 42° 9.87′ N, 70° 56.76′ W. Marker is in South Weymouth, Massachusetts, in Norfolk County. Memorial is at the intersection of Shea Memorial Drive and Memorial Grove Avenue on Shea Memorial Drive. This marker is on the base of the aircraft. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: South Weymouth MA 02190, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A4D-2 (A-4B) Skyhawk (here, next to this marker); Shea Field Memorial Grove (within shouting distance of this
History of NAS South Weymouth Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Don Morfe, May 26, 2013
2. History of NAS South Weymouth Marker
marker); War Memorial (approx. 3 miles away); Braintree (approx. 4.2 miles away); First School House in Weymouth (approx. 4˝ miles away); The First Church in Weymouth (approx. 4˝ miles away); Abigail Adams Birthplace (approx. 4.7 miles away); Abigail Adams Cairn (approx. 5˝ miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in South Weymouth.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 19, 2018. It was originally submitted on June 27, 2013, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 911 times since then and 86 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on June 27, 2013, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 23, 2024