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On Eternal Patrol - Discrepancies in Medals Awarded to Lost Submariners as Listed on the ABMC Website

This page attempts to help bring differing data into line, and serve as a reliable source of information for the families of lost submariners as well as for submarine veterans' organizations.

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ABMC Seal The American Battle Monuments Commission

ABMC honors the service, achievements, and sacrifice of U.S. Armed Forces. The AMBC website (www.abmc.gov) has personal memorial pages for each of its honorees, much as this site does. ABMC maintains files for the nearly 225,000 American war dead who are buried at their cemeteries or commemorated on their Tablets of the Missing. Search their listings at https://www.abmc.gov/database-search. Unfortunately, the "Unit" function, although it includes some surface ships, does not include any submarines other than USS Bass.

In order to assist them in their effort, we at On Eternal Patrol have offered them the results of our extensive research into the medals, particularly the Purple Heart, received by men who were lost while serving the U.S. Submarine Force. The Purple Heart is correctly listed on the ABMC website for approximately 97% of lost submarine men who were eligible for the award. However, for the eighty families of the men whose Purple Heart is unlisted, that is no consolation.

On July 27, 2011, we sent a message to ABMC offices along with a copy to Navy Casualty, detailing omissions and errors (Table A) in their online listings of Purple Heart recipients. We included not only evidence that the men in question were entitled to the Purple Heart, but that they were, in fact, awarded the medal. As of this writing, none of the omissions have been corrected in the ABMC website.


Table A

All 45 of the men listed in Table A below are in National Archives' State Summary of War Casualties from World War II for Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard Personnel, accessable at https://www.archives.gov/research/military/ww2/navy-casualties.

All have Purple Heart Cards in the National Archives II (College Park, Maryland). Here is an example:

Purple Heart Card for Jasa, R L

Purple Heart Card of Robert Lee Jasa of USS Wahoo (SS-238), photographed at National Archives II in College Park, Maryland, on April 22, 2019.

Note that Purple Heart Cards in NARA are scheduled to be digitalized, probably late in 2019, and made available to the public online. Unfortunately, not all men who received the Purple Heart (or who were eligible to receive the award) have Purple Heart Cards in the National Archives.

All men listed in Table A served aboard American submarines that were lost in action in World War II, with the exception of Samuel Howard Hunter (see Note 3 below).

Except for the men listed below in Table A and Table B, all other men who were lost when these submarines were sunk have the Purple Heart shown on their respective ABMC pages.

Three men, including a son of ADM Husband E. Kimmel, were the Commanding Officers of their vessels. At least seven of the men received other major awards, ranging from the Prisoner of War Medal to the Navy Cross.

All have individual pages on both ABMC's World War II Honor Roll and its equivalent page on the website of the National World War II Memorial. None is listed on ABMC's pages as having received the Purple Heart.

Name Rank/Rate Submarine Purple Heart Note
Andrews, Harold Doyle CTM USS Lagarto (SS-371) unlisted in ABMC  
Archer, Howard Warren EM2 USS Growler (SS-215) "  
Bell, Frederick Richard TM2 USS Grayback (SS-208) "  
Bloodsworth, Ralph QM3 USS Grayback (SS-208) "  
Boland, John Joseph CPhM USS Trout (SS-202) "  
Brabham, Charles Edward CRM USS Escolar (SS-294) "  
Brockman, Robert John CTM USS Trout (SS-202) " Note 1
Childs, Frederick Herbert, Jr. TM1 USS Albacore (SS-218) "  
Deane, Lawrence William TM3 USS Scorpion (SS-278) "  
Duncan, Greer Assheton, Jr. LCDR USS Tullibee (SS-284) (XO) " Note 2
Gillen, Frederick Earl, Jr. S2 USS S-44 (SS-155) "  
Hill, William Murray Orlo F1 USS Amberjack (SS-219) "  
Holzmann, Frederick Charles, Jr. TM2 USS Grayback (SS-208) "  
Hunter, Samuel Howard, Jr. LTJG USS Seadragon (SS-194) " Note 3
Jasa, Robert Lee MM3 USS Wahoo (SS-238) "  
Kaylor, Frederick Graybill PhM1 USS Argonaut (SS-166) "  
Kimmel, Manning Marius CDR USS Robalo (SS-273) (CO) " Note 4
Kraut, Richard Paul* EM2 USS Kete (SS-369) "  
LaRouche, Roger Joseph* Cox USS Cisco (SS-290) "  
Leaf, Leslie Harold MoMM3 USS Grayback (SS-208) "  
Logan, Samuel Moore LT USS Harder (SS-257) " Note 5
Maddox, John Hobert TM1 USS Growler (SS-215) "  
McCormack, Patrick Henry EM3 USS Pickerel (SS-177) "  
Nichols, Clyde William Bkr1 USS Grayling (SS-209) "  
Nichols, Harvey Edward F1 USS Robalo (SS-273) "  
Parks, William Jona GM1 USS Bullhead (SS-332) "  
Raguet, Conde Le Roy LCDR USS Barbel (SS-316) (CO) " Note 6
Raminski, William Edward MM1 USS Capelin (SS-289) "  
Rhodes, John Edgar, Jr. CMoMM USS Capelin (SS-289) "  
Robison, Eugene Thomas* BM1 USS Lagarto (SS-371) "  
Rooney, Roderick Shanahan CDR USS Corvina (SS-226) (CO) " Note 7
Schenavar, Maxium Daniels* MoMM2 USS Kete (SS-369) " Note 8
Schmidt, Charles Augustus* F1 USS Herring (SS-233) "  
Schulz, Kurt George Y2 USS Growler (SS-215) "  
Simon, Donald John RM3 USS Harder (SS-257) "  
Simon, Harry GM1 USS Capelin (SS-289) "  
Simonetti, Alfred Russell SM2 USS Wahoo (SS-238) "  
Smolenski, Edward John S1 USS Capelin (SS-289) "  
Thompson, Roland Morris TM2 USS Golet (SS-361) "  
Thurman, Irby Hinson MM3 USS Amberjack (SS-219) "  
Traynor, Charles Edward* LTJG USS Albacore (SS-218) " Note 9
Vaughn, Paul Benton, Jr.* Cox USS Tang (SS-306) "  
White, Duane Joseph MoMM2 USS Sculpin (SS-191) " Note 10
Willinsky, Joseph Francis* S1 USS Runner (SS-275) "  
Worthington, Wesley Willard, Jr. EM2 USS Gudgeon (SS-211) "  

*Men who are correctly listed in the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor (https://www.thepurpleheart.com/)

We have copies of the Purple Heart Cards from the National Archives for the men listed in bold (all 45 of the men listed above).

Table A - Notes

Note 1 - Robert also received the Army Silver Star and the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 2 - Greer was the Executive Officer of USS Tullibee (SS-284).

Note 3 - Samuel was killed by a bomb that hit USS Sealion (SS-195), moored alongside his submarine.

Note 4 - Manning was the Commanding Officer of USS Robalo (SS-273). He received the Silver Star and the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart. He was a son of ADM Husband E. Kimmel.

Note 5 - Samuel received the Navy Cross, the Silver Star, and the Legion of Merit, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 6 - Conde was the Commanding Officer of USS Barbel (SS-316). He received the Bronze Star and the Navy Commendation Medal, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 7 - Roderick was the Commanding Officer of USS Corvina (SS-226). He received the Silver Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 8 - Some sources mistakenly spell his first name as "Maximum."

Note 9 - Charles began his career in the Navy as an enlisted man, and was later given a Commission. He received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 10 - Duane survived the sinking of his vessel, but later died as a Prisoner of War. He received the Bronze Star and the Prisoner of War Medal, as well as the Purple Heart.


None of the men listed in Table B below were included in our letter to ABMC in 2011. We have since found that ABMC has failed to list the Purple Heart for these men, as well.

Table B

All 35 of the men listed in Table B below are in NARA's State Summary of War Casualties from World War II for Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard Personnel.

In the future we will attempt to locate Purple Heart Cards in the National Archives for these men.

All served aboard American submarines that were lost in action in World War II, with the exceptions of John Churchill MacMahon and Sergi Andreevitch Mahailoff (see Notes below).

Except for the men listed in Table A above and in Table B below, all other men who were lost when these submarines were sunk have the Purple Heart shown on their respective ABMC pages.

Name Rank/Rate Submarine Purple Heart Note
Baumer, Kenneth Ripley GM2 USS Albacore (SS-218) unlisted in ABMC Note 1
Beley, Michael, Jr. S2 USS Grampus (SS-207) "  
Boucher, Ralph Irving SC1 USS Barbel (SS-316) "  
Bragg, Perry Carr QM3 USS Capelin (SS-289) "  
Burress, Maurice Thurman CEM USS Barbel (SS-316) " Note 2
Campbell, John Stephenson ENS USS Wahoo (SS-238) " Note 3
Crutchfield, Charles Randolph, Jr. LTJG USS Kete (SS-369) "  
Haynes, Jack Edwin TM3 USS Swordfish (SS-193) "  
Holland, Erwin Raymond MoMM1 USS Sculpin (SS-191) "  
Jennings, George Alfred* MoMM2 USS Pompano (SS-181) "  
Johnson, Albert William TM2 USS Trout (SS-202) "  
Johnson, Carl Monroe* F2 USS Runner (SS-275) "  
Johnson, Samuel Loy, Jr.* RM3 USS Herring (SS-233) "  
Johnson, Stanley Ford* EM3 USS Pompano (SS-181) "  
Kanagy, John Theodore* EM1 USS Tang (SS-306) " Note 4
Lange, Salvatore Joseph TM3 USS Barbel (SS-316) " Note 5
MacIntyre, James Clyde* F1 USS Shark (SS-314) "  
MacMahon, John Churchill Specialist 1 USS Burrfish (SS-312) " Note 6
Maghan, Allan George F1 USS Bonefish (SS-223) "  
Manganello, Lawrence Anthony CCS USS Scorpion (SS-278) "  
Mihailoff, Sergi Andreevitch CPhoM Soviet Submarine L-16 " Note 7
Niclas, John Richard MoMM2 USS Robalo (SS-273) "  
Reichelt, Robert Charles* MoMM1 USS Golet (SS-361) "  
Reichert, Raymond Edward* F1 USS Lagarto (SS-371) "  
Reinhardt, Ernest* F1 USS Tang (SS-306) "  
Rolland, Harold Lomani CGM USS Argonaut (SS-166) "  
Smith, Bryant Thomas F1 USS Escolar (SS-294) "  
St. John, Francis Tyler Y1 USS Amberjack (SS-219) " Note 8
Wiegenstein, Michael Paul* CMoMM USS Seawolf (SS-197) "  
Williams, Davie Lee StM1 USS Robalo (SS-273) "  
Williams, Roy Edgar* EM1 USS Golet (SS-361) " Note 9
Witting, Roy Leonard MM3 USS Wahoo (SS-238) "  
Wyatt, John Clinton GM1 USS Grayback (SS-208) "  
Zea, Calvin Kenneth TM3 USS Robalo (SS-273) "  
Zimmermann, Karl RM1 USS Scorpion (SS-278) " Note 10

*Men who are correctly listed in the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor (https://www.thepurpleheart.com/)

Table B - Notes

Note 1 - Kenneth received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 2 - Maurice received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 3 - John received the Silver Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 4 - John received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 5 - Salvatore received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 6 - John received the Silver Star and the Prisoner of War Medal, as well as the Purple Heart. He was taken prisoner while on reconnaissance mission and executed in captivity. None of his awards are listed in ABMC.

Note 7 - Sergi was aboard the Soviet Submarine L-16 as a liaison officer and interpreter when the boat was sunk.

Note 8 - Francis received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 9 - Roy received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

Note 10 - Karl received the Bronze Star, as well as the Purple Heart.

 


Sources of Our Information 
For a general listing of research sources, see our Sources page.

Primary Sources

The information presented above represents thousands of hours of original research into the records of more than 4,000 individual submariners.  Our findings are not a result of copying group listings from secondary sources. The evidence on which we base our information, in nearly every case of submariner fatality during World War II, is found by accessing individual personnel files in the National Archives' National Personnel Records Center, St. Louis.  This research was done almost entirely by World War II submarine veteran Paul W. Wittmer, with input by Charles R. Hinman.

We are also in touch with the families of hundreds of the men we seek to honor, many of whom have donated photos, documents, and information. 

For all of the men in Table A, Purple Heart Cards in hard copy have been accessed in National Archives II, College Park, Maryland. Note that not all men who received the Purple Heart (or who were eligible to receive the award) have Purple Heart Cards on file in NARA.

National Purple Heart Hall of Honor lists only a small percentage of the men honored on this site, but it does confirm that at least nine men from Table A and eleven men from Table B received the Purple Heart.

U. S. Navy Casualty Lists, Book 11, pp. #2042 - #2152, Submarine War Patrols, Pacific - 7 December 1941 to 2 September 1945. This listing was provided to us by Michael W. Pocock of the Maritime Quest website. A recently completed man-by-man comparison of our World War II lost submariner listings with those shown in Navy Casualt confirms complete agreement between our two sets of applicable data.

Secondary Sources

U.S. Submarine Losses - World War II, which was first published in 1946, then republished with some corrections (and a few mistakes of its own) in 1949, and finally republished in 1963 (unfortunately reinserting many of the errors in the 1946 edition).  See www.history.navy.mil/research/library/online-reading-room/title-list-alphabetically/u/united-states-submarine-losses.html on the website of the Naval History & Heritage Command for the online version of the 1963 edition. The online version on the NHHC website has recently been updated, and is now entirely consistent with On Eternal Patrol research. We have a seperate page detailing the now corrected Discrepancies in Submarine Losses that were found on the NHHC website.

State Summary of War Casualties from World War II for Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard Personnel. Immediately after the War, the Navy Department published their State SummariesThey are available online on the website of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) at http://www.archives.gov/research/military/ww2/navy-casualties/). Within this are also lists of POWs who were released from prison camps.

U. S. Rosters of World War II Dead, 1939-1945, available online on the Ancestry.com website (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=1102).

The Register of the Commissioned Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps is available online on the late Patrick Clancey's HyperWar website at http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/AMH/USN/Naval_Registers/.


An additional note for the ABMC website on the page for Thomas Boychulk (https://www.abmc.gov/node/459625):

"A 19 year old American man from Pennsylvania serving on active duty as a Seaman Second Class aboard the submarine "USS Bass" (SS-164) during World War II with seven months service. On August 17, 1942 while submerged, a fire started in the after battery room and spread to the torpedo room killing 25 [should be 26] crew members from asphyxiation by poisonous gas. He was buried at Corozal American Cemetery."

The same error appears on John Axton Robson's page (https://www.abmc.gov/node/459609). See our page on USS Bass for a complete list of men lost in the fire aboard the boat.


Discrepancies in Numbers of Lost Submariners

NHHC - Corrected Discrepancies in Submarine Losses

DPAA - Discrepancies in Submarine Losses

Lost Submarines by Month

Submarine Losses - Chronological

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