Isaac entered the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland, USA in 1902, graduating with the class of 1906 in February of that year, and was commissioned an Ensign in 1908. Kidd participated in the 1907-09 "Great White Fleet" cruise around the world while serving on the USS New Jersey (BB-16). Following service on the USS North Dakota (BB-29) and the USS Pennsylvania (ACR-4), he became Aide and Flag Secretary to the Commander in Chief, Pacific Fleet, the first of his many flag staff assignments. He was an instructor at the Naval Academy in 1916-17.
During and after the First World War, Kidd was stationed on the USS New Mexico (BB-40), then had further staff and Naval Academy service. He was executive officer of the USS Utah (BB-31) in 1925-26, then commanded the USS Vega (AK-17) until becoming Captain of the Port at Chrisobal, Panama Canal Zone in 1927-30. Promoted to the rank of Captain, he was Chief of Staff to Commander, Base Force, U.S. Fleet in 1930-32. After three years at the Bureau of Navigation in Washington, D.C., he was Commander Destroyer Squadron ONE, Scouting Force, in 1935-36.
Captain Kidd next attended the Naval War College and served on the college staff. He was Commanding Officer of USS Arizona (BB-39) from September 1938 until February 1940, when he was promoted to Rear Admiral and assigned as Commander Battleship Division ONE and Chief of Staff to Commander, Battleships, Battle Force.
RADM Isaac Kidd USN was Killed in Action at Pearl Harbor aboard the USS Arizona during World War II.
On 7 December 1941, RADM Isaac Kidd was killed in action on board the USS Arizona during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. He was the first Navy flag officer ever killed in enemy action, and the first American flag officer killed in World War II. Rear Admiral Isaac C. Kidd was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Pearl Harbor attack. His body was never recovered.
Three U.S. Navy destroyers have been named in honor of Rear Admiral Kidd: USS Kidd (DD-661), 1943-1974 (still afloat as a memorial at Baton Rouge, Louisiana), USS Kidd (DD-993), 1979-1998 (sold to Taiwan), and USS Kidd (DDG-100), 2005 and still in service as of 2014.
The Medal of Honor citation of Rear Admiral Isaac C. Kidd (as printed in his official Navy Office of Information Biography, June 1974):
"For conspicuous devotion to duty, extraordinary courage, and complete disregard of his own life, during the attack on the Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, by Japanese Forces on December 7, 1941. He immediately went to the bridge and as Commander Battleship Division ONE, courageously discharged his duties as Senior Officer Present Afloat until the USS ARIZONA, his Flagship, blew up from magazine explosions and a direct bomb hit on the bridge, which resulted in the loss of his life."
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↑ 7.07.1 "Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XZRD-7S8 : 25 September 2017), Isaac C. Kidd and Inez N. Gillmore, 29 Apr 1911; citing Cuyahoga, Ohio, United States, reference P 70 CN 73280; county courthouses, Ohio; FHL microfilm 886,225.
↑ "United States Census, 1910," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MRSG-87B : accessed 4 December 2017), Isaac C Kidd, USS North Dakota, US Navy, Military and Naval Forces, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 75, sheet 1A, family , NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 1784; FHL microfilm 1,375,797. Age 26, single, officer aboard USS North Dakota.
↑ Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Year: 1910; Census Place: USS New Jersey, Hampton Roads, Virginia, Military and Naval Forces; Roll: T624_1784; Page: 1A; Enumeration District: 0070; FHL microfilm: 1375797
↑ Ancestry.com. U.S., Navy and Marine Corps Registries, 1814-1992 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2017. Navy Department Library - Naval History and Heritage Command; Washington, D.C.; Navy Register: Officers of the U.S. Navy and Marine; Year: 1938 (v.1)
"United States Census, 1920," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:SP8R-FMD : accessed 4 December 2017), Isaac ? Kidd, , , Military and Naval Forces, United States; citing USS Pennsylvania, sheet 13A, line , family , NARA microfilm publication T625 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1992), roll 2040; FHL microfilm 1,822,040.
Naval History and Heritage Command, Gives biography information, citation and pictures of Isaac Campbell Kidd.
USS Kidd DDG-100 Facebook page. Gives picture of USS Kidd.
Thank you to Robert Keniston for creating Kidd-1247 on 21 Nov 13. Click the Changes tab for the details on contributions by Robert and others.