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The Tailhook Educational Foundation

2018 Scholarships

Jake Wilson

Jake Wilson


Sponsored by


Awarded To

Jake Wilson

Virginia Beach, Virginia

United States Naval Academy, Annapolis

Scholarship Description

This Searfus family memorial scholarship recognizes both Naval Aviation legacy heroes in the air and those on the ground who continuously and selflessly support our nation and Navy families everywhere.



 ‘Bold, brave, skilled, fearless, smart, inspirational, happy… a great combat warrior leader …’

 “The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the SILVER STAR, to COMMANDER William H. Searfus, USN, for CONSPICUOUS GALLANTRY and INTREPIDITY on 25 October 1967, as Commanding Officer of VA-155, embarked in USS CORAL SEA (CVA-43).  COMMANDER Searfus led .. [a] major air wing assault on the strongly defended Phuc Yen airfield in North Vietnam. Flying over heavily defended enemy terrain, COMMANDER Searfus unhesitatingly performed a devastating dive-bombing run on the assigned target, completely destroying it. During the recovery, he was engulfed by enemy anti-aircraft fire actually displacing his aircraft. COMMANDER Searfus’ Courage, dynamic leadership, and determination in the face of intense enemy opposition reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”  CDR Bill Searfus was also awarded 8 Distinguished Flying Crosses for leading air wing strikes on targets on Ninh Binh, Do Xa, Haiphong twice, Phuc Yen, and Hanoi three times.  Stanley A. Searfus was CDR Bill Searfus’ 3rd of 6 children.  Hailing from Coronado CA., Stan selflessly served his Coronado community and NAS North Island for 20 years as a Lifeguard and Ocean Rescue Instructor.  Stan saved dozens of lives and rescued scores of others from harm’s way in the water and ashore.  Stan was the President of the Coronado Surfing Association (CSA), a 501C(3) organization, whose mission is to promote a passion for surfing and the ocean environment.  Also, for 15 years Stan coached the Coronado middle school and high school surf teams. He approached his “surf coach” job with the zest of an evangelist, infectious energy and tireless commitment.  Stan Searfus died unexpectedly while surfing off of Point Loma at age 55 and is survived by 6 children and his wife Jan.  Stan was a gifted and giving waterman, a teacher, mentor, coach, a community servant, a true friend, and blessing to all who knew him.  

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