James Johnson (SA Navy)
|James 'Flam' Johnson|
10 February 1918|
|Died||2 October 1990(aged 72)|
|Service/branch||South African Navy|
|Years of service||1946–1977|
|Commands held||South African Navy
SAS President Pretorius
|Battles/wars||World War II|
Vice-Admiral James 'Johnny' Johnson SSA SM DSC, South African Navy (Retired) is a former Chief of the South African Navy (1 April 1972 to 30 September 1977). He was nicknamed "Flam" after his wartime red beard - "Vlambaard" in Afrikaans.
He was commissioned in 1938 and joined HMS York in 1939. After his ship was sunk in Suda Bay, Crete, he joined HMS Jed, which took part in the Battle of the Atlantic from 1942 to 1943. During this time he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for Gallantry. He also served as Commanding Officer of HMS Verbena and HMS Rosebay
After the war he transferred to the South African Navy in 1946 as a Lieutenant Commander. He held various commands, including SAS Bloemfontein, SAS Transvaal, SAS Good Hope and the Navy Gymnasium. He commanded the Rothesay class frigate SAS President Pretorious when she was delivered from Britain in 1964, in the rank of Captain.
1969 he was promoted to Flag Rank and appointed Chief of Naval Staff.
Awards and decorations
Distinguished Service Cross
The citation in the London Gazette reads:
For outstanding courage, enterprise and devotion to duty in action with enemy submarines while serving in H.M.S. Jed
Lieutenant James Johnson, R.N.R. (Brekpan (sic), Transvaal).
|Chief of the South African Navy
J Charl Walters
- Uys, Ian (1992). South African Military Who's Who 1452–1992. Fortress Publishers. p. 115. ISBN 0-9583173-3-X.
- South African Defence Force Information website
- Old Salts History J0695
- HMS Verbena (K 85) of the Royal Navy - British Corvette of the Flower class - Allied Warships of WWII - uboat.net
- C.J. Nöthling, E.M. Meyers (1982). "Leaders through the years (1912–1982)". Scientaria Militaria 12 (2): 9e.
- Fact file: Chiefs of the South African Navy | DefenceWeb
- London Gazette Issue 36400