Quentin Roosevelt II

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Quentin Roosevelt II (November 4, 1919 – December 21, 1948) was the fourth child and youngest son of Theodore "Ted" Roosevelt III and Eleanor Butler Alexander. He was the namesake of his uncle Quentin Roosevelt, who was killed in action, in 1918 during World War I. His elder brothers were World War II veterans Theodore Roosevelt IV and Cornelius Van Schaack Roosevelt III.


Quentin II published a paper through the American Museum of Natural History in 1934, describing a new species of fossil pronghorn antelope that he and a boyhood friend, Joseph W. Burden, had found in a cave in southern Arizona.[1][2] He attended Harvard University, where he wrote his senior thesis on some Nakhi (Naxi) manuscripts he had collected while visiting Western China at the border of Tibet.[3][4] Life magazine published images from his journey, which he made at the age of 19.[5]

He graduated from Groton School followed by Harvard College in 1941 and soon after joined the Army. He was wounded at the Battle of Kasserine Pass in February 1943 and was a recipient of the Purple Heart, Croix de Guerre and Silver Star.[6] Captain Roosevelt was among the first wave of soldiers to land at Omaha Beach while his father landed with the first wave at Utah Beach on D-day.


While serving as the Director of the China National Aviation Corporation, he was killed in a plane crash in Hong Kong, on December 21, 1948. He was 29. His C-54 plane crashed on a mountain on Basalt Island in Sai Kung. All 35 on board were killed instantly.[7] There is no clear record of recovery or disposition of his remains but they are believed to have been left on Basalt Island.[8] A memorial gravestone for him is located at his wife's grave in Youngs Cemetery in Oyster Bay, New York.[9] [10]


On April 12, 1944, he married Frances Blanche Webb, (1917–1995)[11] an American Red Cross worker, at Blandford Forum. They had three daughters: Anna, Alexandra, and Susan. Anna C. Roosevelt, a noted archaeologist specializing in Amazonia, won a MacArthur Fellowship. Alexandra married Ronald W. Dworkin.[12] Susan Roosevelt Weld graduated from Harvard University with a JD and PhD, and was married to former Massachusetts Governor William Weld; they had five children: David Minot Weld, Ethel Derby Weld, Mary B. Weld, Quentin Roosevelt Weld, and Frances Wylie Weld.[13]



  1. ^ Roosevelt, Q.; Burden, J. W. (1934). "A new species of antilocaprine, Tetrameryx onusrosagris, from a Pleistocene cave deposit in southern Arizona". American Museum Novitates. AMNH. 754: 1–4. Retrieved 2015-11-21. 
  2. ^ "Burden's Pronghorn: an Arizona Story". Prehistoric Pronghorn. International Wildlife Museum. Retrieved 2015-11-21. 
  3. ^ "Naxi Manuscript Collection: Quentin Roosevelt II". loc.gov. 
  4. ^ "Naxi Manuscript Collection: Quentin Roosevelt II". loc.gov. 
  5. ^ "LIFE". google.com. 
  6. ^ "Quentin Roosevelt, Vice President and Director of CNAC". cnac.org. 
  7. ^ "Quentin Roosevelt Killed in Air Crash". New York Times, December 22, 1948
  8. ^ David Pickerell (19 November 2007). "Basalt Island Crash Investigation" (PDF). Retrieved 10 August 2015. 
  9. ^ "Circumstances of the Crash on Balsalt Island, Flight originated in Shanghai", Crash of Airplane carrying Quentin Roosevelt II on December 21, 1948, www.cnac.org, retrieved 2008-09-30 
  10. ^ "Maj Quentin Roosevelt, II (1919 - 1948) - Find A Grave Memorial". findagrave.com. 
  11. ^ "Frances Roosevelt, Portrait Artist, 78", The New York Times, September 13, 1995
  12. ^ "Alexandra Roosevelt Wed To Dr. Ronald W. Dworkin", The New York Times, March 6, 1988
  13. ^ "The Weld's of Harvard Yard", Harvard Magazine, Craig A. Lambert

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