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Home Town Downey, CA
Last Address Not Specified
Casualty Date Feb 04, 1945
Cause Hostile, Died while Missing
Reason Lost At Sea-Unrecovered
Location Pacific Ocean
Conflict Submarine War Patrols
Location of Interment Manila American Cemetery - Taguig City, Philippines
Wall/Plot Coordinates Tablets of the Missing (cenotaph)
Last Known Activity On 3 February BARBEL sent a message to GABILAN, USS TUNA (SS-203), and USS BLACKFIN (SS-322) stating that she had been bombed by enemy aircraft three times that day and would transmit again the following night with more information. But no transmission came. On 6 February, TUNA indicated that she had been unable to raise BARBEL for 48 hours and requested a rendezvous with her sister sub on the following day. BARBEL didn’t show. The navy declared her overdue and presumed lost on 16 February, the day on which she was scheduled to leave her patrol area.
Japanese records examined after the war state that on 4 February a plane dropped two bombs on a surfaced sub, scoring one hit near the bridge. The crew of the aircraft watched the sub, on fire, plunge beneath the waves. It did not return to the surface. It is almost certain that the sub was BARBEL.
Eighty-one men were lost with their boat, the recipient of three battle stars for her World War II service.
Barbel arrived at Pearl Harbor on 21 June 1944 and commenced preparation for her first war patrol. From 15 July 1944-4 February 1945, she carried out four war patrols and is officially credited with sinking six Japanese ships totaling 15,263 tons.
Barbel was never heard from again. Japanese aviators reported an attack on a submarine off southwest Palawan on 4 February. Two bombs were dropped and one landed on the submarine near the bridge. The sub plunged, under a cloud of fire and spray. This was very likely the last engagement of Barbel. She was officially reported lost on 16 February 1945.