David, Albert Leroy, LT

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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
144X-Engineering Duty Officer - Ship Engineering Specialist
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1944-1945, 144X, NAVSTA Norfolk, VA
Service Years
1919 - 1945

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by PO1 Jeff Frey (Ace) to remember David, Albert Leroy (MOH), LT.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Last Address
Norfolk, Virginia

Date of Passing
Sep 17, 1945
Location of Interment
Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery - San Diego, California
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

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 Unofficial Badges 

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
  • Lead an eight man Boarding Team in successful boarding and capture of the German Submarine U-505, the first capture of a enemy man-o-war on the high seas since 1815.
  • Directed the initial salvage operations of U-505.
  • USS Albert David (DE-1050) named in his honor.
  • U-505┬áis currently on display at the Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago.
David was recalled to active duty on September 27, 1939, less than a month after World War II broke out in Europe with Nazi Germany's invasion of Poland.

Appointed machinist on May 13, 1942, David was assigned to the Submarine Repair Unit, San Diego on May 28, and served in that unit for five months. While there, he received his promotion to ensign on June 15. Reporting thence to the Naval Training School for diesel engineers at the Madison campus of the University of Wisconsin, for instruction, David ultimately reported for duty at the Naval Training Station, Naval Operating Base, Norfolk, before he traveled to Orange, Texas, to assist in fitting out the destroyer escort USS Pillsbury (DE-133), which was commissioned at the Consolidated Steel Corporation yard on June 7, 1943.

Promoted to lieutenant (jg.) while Pillsbury was fitting out, David served in that ship as she operated in the Atlantic, escorting convoys into Casablanca and Gibraltar, and serving with a "hunter-killer" unit formed around USS Guadalcanal (CVE-60). He was serving as Pillsbury's assistant engineering and electrical officer when Guadalcanal's task group located a German submarine off Cape Blanco, French West Africa, on June 4, 1944, and forced it to the surface.

Pillsbury lowered a boat and sent a party of nine men, led by David, to board the U-boat, soon identified as U-505, which was still underway and running in a circle on the surface. Although he "had every reason to believe" that Germans were still below decks setting demolition charges and scuttling the ship, David led Pillsbury's men on board and down the conning tower hatch, and took possession of the ship. Although he found the sea flooding into the U-boat, David remained below directing the initial salvage operations´┐Ż??aware that at any moment the submersible could blow up or sink. Men from Guadalcanal arrived soon thereafter to aid in the battle to keep U-505 afloat, and David remained on board directing the salvage operations. As a result of his vigorous and heroic efforts, the valuable prize was eventually taken to Bermuda.
Other Comments:

His Medal of Honor citation reads:

"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while attached to the U.S.S. Pillsbury during the capture of an enemy German submarine off French West Africa, June 4, 1944. Taking a vigorous part in the skillfully coordinated attack on the U-505 at the end of a prolonged search by the Task Group, Lt. (then Lt. j.g.) David boldly led a party from the Pillsbury in boarding the hostile submarine as it circled erratically at 5 or 6 knots on the surface. Fully aware that the U-boat might at any moment sink or be blown up by exploding demolition and scuttling charges, he braved the added danger of enemy gunfire to plunge through the conning tower hatch and, with his small party, exerted every effort to keep the ship afloat and to assist the succeeding and more fully equipped salvage parties in making the U-505 seaworthy for the long tow across the Atlantic to a U.S. port. By his valiant service during the first successful boarding and capture of an enemy man-of-war on the high seas by the United States Navy since 1815, Lt. David contributed materially to the effectiveness of the Battle of the Atlantic and upheld the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service."

Promoted to lieutenant soon thereafter, David received the Medal of Honor for his part in the "first successful boarding and capture of an enemy man-of-war on the high seas by the United States Navy since 1815." His was the only Medal of Honor awarded to a member of the Navy in the Atlantic theater of World War II.

He died of a heart attack at Norfolk, Virginia, however, before the medal could be presented to him; it was presented by President Harry S. Truman to David's widow, Lynda Mae David, on October 5, 1945, in a ceremony at the White House.
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  1944-1945, 144X, NAVSTA Norfolk, VA


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NAVSTA Norfolk, VA Unit Page


144X-Engineering Duty Officer - Ship Engineering Specialist

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 NAVSTA Norfolk, VA Details

NAVSTA Norfolk, VA

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Last Updated: Mar 11, 2019
My Photos For This Unit
Tomb Stone
38 Members Also There at Same Time
NAVSTA Norfolk, VA

Acker, George Bernard, LTJG, (1942-1945) OFF 00X Ensign
Hobbs, Delbert Dellis, CPO, (1931-1953) SC SC-0000 Chief Petty Officer
Robison, Mary Elizabeth, PO1, (1943-1945) YN YN-0000 Petty Officer First Class
Haskins, Albert Ray, PO1, (1937-1949) SM SM-0000 Signalman 2nd Class
Garner, Willie Carson, PO2, (1939-1945) WT WT-0000 Petty Officer Second Class
Mannas, Oscar Victor, PO2, (1942-1945) TM TM-0000 Petty Officer Second Class
Weichenmaier, Sylvester Carl, PO2, (1942-1945) SF SF-0000 Petty Officer Second Class
Albright, Henry, PO2, (1941-1945) RD RD-0000 Petty Officer Third Class
Arthurs, William Robert, PO3, (1944-1946) MM MM-0000 Petty Officer Third Class
Goodrich, Vincent Newberry, CDR, (1943-1978) SO SO-0000 Petty Officer Third Class
Lombardo, Frank M, PO2, (1942-1946) SO SO-0000 Petty Officer Third Class
O'Campo, George Peter, PO1, (1942-1946) SC SC-0000 Petty Officer Third Class
White, William Birmingham, PO2, (1943-1946) PhM PhM-0000 Petty Officer Third Class
Gaggioli, Evo, Cox, (1942-1945) COX COX-0000 Coxswain
George, Lawrence Kellis, Cox, (1942-1945) BM Cox-0000 Coxswain
Seidlich, Benjamin Franklin, Cox, (1937-1945) COX COX-0000 Coxswain
Giovinco, Joseph John, S1c, (1942-1945) S1c S1c-0000 Seaman First Class
Osbourn, Merridith Sherman, S1c, (1944-1946) S1c S1c-0000 Seaman First Class
Rizzuto, Philip Francis, S1c, (1943-1945) S1c S1c-0000 Seaman First Class
Willey, Walter, CPO, (1944-1986) SN SN-0000 Seaman
Bard, Francis Paul, PO3, (1943-1944) F1c F1c-0000 Fireman First Class
Garner, Willie Carson, PO2, (1939-1945) BT BT-0000 Fireman First Class
Gorchyca, Michael Harry, F1c, (1943-1944) EM EM-0000 Fireman First Class
Laird, Charles Lawser, PO3, (1943-1945) F1c F1c-0000 Fireman First Class
Bray, George Edward, S1c, (1943-1946) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Crowley, Art Smith, PO2, (1944-1946) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Ford, Armon, S1c, (1943-1947) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Goldstein, Leonard Stanley, S2c, (1943-1944) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Grater, George Washington, S1c, (1943-1944) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Toczek, Walter Edward, S1c, (1943-1944) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Zanetti, Alfred Charles, S2c, (1943-1944) S2c S2c-0000 Seaman Second Class
Green, Lee Roy, F1c, (1944-1946) F2c F2c-0000 Fireman Second Class
Lease, Earl Henry, F1c, (1942-1944) F2c F2c-0000 Fireman Second Class
Dickie, Joseph F., PO1, (1943-1946) Petty Officer Second Class
Ennis, Floyd, S1c, (1942-1945) Seaman First Class
Lentz, Eugene Clinton, ENS, (1943-1945) Ensign
Atlantic Fleet Boat Pool

Clemente, William, LCDR, (1943-1973) QM QM-0000 Petty Officer Second Class
Naval Receiving Station, Norfolk, VA

Shappell, Robert, S1c, (1944-1946) 00 Seaman Second Class
Shore Intermediate Maintenance Activity (SIMA)

Ohara, Joesph, LT, (1983-2007) GS GSE-0000 Chief Petty Officer

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