Ballou, William Edward, EMC

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Chief Petty Officer
Last Primary NEC
EM-0000-Electrician's Mate
Last Rating/NEC Group
Electrician's Mate
Primary Unit
1940-1943, EM-0000, USS Triton (SS-201)
Service Years
1929 - 1943
EM-Electrician's Mate
Three Hash Marks

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

355 kb

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Nicole Summers, MMFN to remember Ballou, William Edward, EMC.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Roanoke, VA
Last Address
509 11th St, SW,
Roanoke, VA
(Parents~Mr&Mrs Charles Edward Ballou)

Casualty Date
Apr 08, 1943
Hostile, Died while Missing
Lost At Sea-Unrecovered
Solomon Islands
World War II
Location of Interment
Fairview Cemetery - Roanoke, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Section 14, Lot 143S (Cenotaph)

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
World War II FallenUnited States Navy Memorial The National Gold Star Family RegistryWW II Memorial National Registry
  2016, World War II Fallen
  2016, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2016, The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2016, WW II Memorial National Registry

 Ribbon Bar
Submarine Enlisted Badge
Submarine Combat Patrol Badge - 5 Patrols

 Duty Stations/ Advancement Schools
USS Narwhal (SS-167)USS Triton (SS-201)
  1937-1940, EM-0000, USS Narwhal (SS-167)
  1940-1943, EM-0000, USS Triton (SS-201)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1945 Submarine War Patrols
  1943-1943 USS Triton (SS-201)
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Service Number
  Mar 15, 2016, General Photos2
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

From USS Nautlis Organization:

On 16 February 1943, USS TRITON (SS-201) departed Brisbane, Australia, on her sixth war patrol. Her assigned area: the waters around Papua New Guinea.

On 6 March, after sinking the Japanese cargo vessel Kiriha Maru, the boat was forced deep when one of her torpedoes made a circular run. For the next nine days she contended with a variety of enemy ships and believed that at least five of the eight torpedoes she expended hit their mark. On 15 March, USS TRIGGER (SS-237), which was operating in an area near TRITON, reported that she had experienced heavy depth charging after attacking a convoy. The attacks continued in the distance for an hour after they stopped in TRIGGER’s vicinity.

Several weeks later a welcoming committee—complete with a band, fresh fruit, and ice cream—gathered on the pier and waited for TRITON to appear as scheduled. She never did. She was reported overdue and presumed lost on 10 April. The cause of her sinking has been in dispute ever since. Japanese records examined after the war’s end indicate that three Japanese destroyers attacked a sub in TRITON’s general area on 15 March. Sailors aboard the ships subsequently observed an oil slick and debris with words in English. Although this sub could have been TRITON, others argue that she may have been lost to a second circular-running torpedo like the one she dealt with on 6 March; two other American submarines, USS TULLIBEE (SS-284) and USS TANG (SS-306) suffered that fate in 1944.

Regardless of what happened, TRITON, the recipient of five battle stars for her wartime service, took 74 men to the bottom with her.


Name of Award
Silver Star
Year Awarded
Details behind Award:
Awarded posthumously for actions during the World War II

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Chief Engineman William Edward Ballou (NSN: 2655554), United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action against the enemy during four successive War Patrols of the U.S.S. TRITON (SS-201). Because of his courage and skill his boat was able to maintain the highest standard of effectiveness and inflict serious damage to the enemy. One time, while an approach was being made on an enemy periscope during August 1942, in close proximity to an enemy controlled coast, his quick thinking directly assisted the diving officer in avoiding damage to the TRITON when the sound operator reported a torpedo fired at his vessel. His conduct throughout was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

Action Date: August 1942
Service: Navy
Rank: Chief Engineman
Vessel: U.S.S. Triton (SS-201)
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