Low, Francis Stuart, ADM

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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
112X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Submarine Warfare
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1953-1956, Commander, Western Sea Frontier
Service Years
1915 - 1956

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Home State
New York
New York
Year of Birth
Not Specified
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Kent Weekly (SS/DSV) (DBF), EMCS to remember Low, Francis Stuart (Frog), ADM USN(Ret).

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Date of Passing
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DOOLITTLE RAID: Admiral Low was the person who concieved the idea of this raid.

The first piece of the puzzle fell into place in the second week of January 1942. Captain Francis Low, attached to the Admiral King's staff in Washington, paid a visit to Norfolk, Virginia, to inspect the new carrier USS Hornet CV-8. There, on a nearby airfield, was painted the outline of a carrier, inspiring Lowe to pursue the possibility of launching ground-based bombers - large planes, with far greater range than carrier-based bombers - from the deck of an aircraft carrier. 
By January 16, Low's air operations officer, Captain Donald Duncan, had developed a proposal. North American B-25 medium bombers, with capacity for a ton of bombs and capable of flying 2000 miles with additional fuel tanks, could take off in the short distance of a carrier deck, attack Japanese cities, and continue on to land on friendly airfields in mainland China.

Other Comments:

Admiral Low was the defacto head of the TENTH FLEET during WWII. This was the Fleet with no ships. They were tasked with the eradication of the U-boat threat in the Atlantic.

An excellent book on the 10th fleet is:  "The Tenth Fleet", by Ladislas Farago

It was an inspired and fortunate decision that Admiral King chose to wear a third hat as Commander, Tenth Fleet, in addition to those he wore as Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet, and as Chief of Naval Operations. Although he seldom exercised personally the functions of this command, his name lent it the authority it needed. Rear Admiral Low, as Chief of Staff in the new organization, in fact ran the show and imbued the Tenth Fleet with his own high standards of performance and conduct.

Tenth Fleet was a unique organization within the United States Navy; never before or since WW II did an organization like Tenth Fleet exist. Under the personal command of the Navy's top sailor, Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, this fleet, created expressly to fight the U-boats, never put to sea (it had no ships) and never had more than about 50 people in its organization, all of whom fought the U-boats with remarkable results from their desks in the old Navy Department building on Constitution Ave. in Washington DC. Tenth Fleet did not exist at the start of the war between Germany and the United States, and had its origins largely in the Allied disaster which took place off the east coast of the United States in 1942. In May of 1943, Tenth Fleet had control over all aspects of the US Navy's battle against the U-boats in the Atlantic but by the end of June 1945 no longer existed. 

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 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
US Naval Academy Annapolis (Faculty Staff)US NavyCOMSUBRON 5, COMSUBPACCOMTENTHFLT
COMSEVENTHFLTCommander in Chief Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT)/Commander Pacific Fleet (COMPACFLT)COMSERVPACBureau of Naval Personnel (BUPERS)
  1911-1915, US Naval Academy Annapolis (Faculty Staff)
  1917-1919, USS D-3 (SS-19)
  1935-1937, USS Paul Jones (DD-230)
  1937-1938, Submarine Division 13
  1940-1942, Commander in Chief, United States Fleet (CINCUS)
  1942-1943, USS Wichita (CA-45)
  1943-1945, COMTENTHFLT
  1945-1945, Commander, Cruiser Division 16
  1945-1945, Commander, UN Blockading and Escort Force (CTF 95), COMSEVENTHFLT
  1945-1946, Commander, Destroyers, Pacific Fleet
  1947-1948, COMSERVPAC
  1950-1953, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Logistics) OP-04, DCNO (M,P,T&E)
  1953-1956, Commander, Western Sea Frontier
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1942-1942 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Guadalcanal Campaign (1942-42)
  1942-1942 Algeria-French Morocco Campaign (1942)/Operation Torch
  1943-1943 Guadalcanal Campaign (1942-42)/Battle of Rennel Island
  1945-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Okinawa Gunto Operation
 Colleges Attended 
United States Naval Academy
  1911-1915, United States Naval Academy
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